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Hi I am new to the board. I just bought a 98 gs400 loaded ( no Nav or Phone). It is lowered w/ chrome 17" lexus wheels. That is the only upgrade. I was wondering what the top 5 upgrades were for the gs 400? I am looking for performance and good ride.

Thanks

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Top 5 for me when I have to start with something new..

1st. is to upgrade the suspension, which you already have done..

2nd. is to get some nice rims...

3rd. Bodykit

4th, 5th, 6th..... Upgrade brakes, performance mods, Audio/video...

As long as you lower your car and put some decent rims on, then you'll be okay.. The rest of the mods will fall into place when the time comes..

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Hi I am new to the board. I just bought a 98 gs400 loaded ( no Nav or Phone). It is lowered w/ chrome 17" lexus wheels. That is the only upgrade. I was wondering what the top 5 upgrades were for the gs 400? I am looking for performance and good ride.

Thanks

This really should depend on your priority. The only two things you called out are performance and good ride. Let's break it down.

Performance - What kind? Power? If so, how much power. Handling? Since you are already lowered? How much lowered? Is that a good height? You want more? less?

Good ride - Again. Good handling? Or good ride quality? You should look at handling and ride quality as the two ends of a guage. As you move towards one, you move away from the other. How much handling do you want and how much ride quality do you want to sacrifice? Another contribution to these are the wheels. Are you happy with the 17s? Planning to go bigger? How is the handling and ride quality of your current setup? What do you like and dislike about it?

And just as important. How much are you willing to spend?

Sorry to answer your question with more questions. The nice thing about the GS is that there are quite a number of quality mods for it. It is just a matter of getting what you want. As you elaborate on your needs, the guys here (me included if I can help) will give your questions a more qualified answer.

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NEO,

I am not sure how low it is. It was lowered when I bought it. I was looking to upgrade the suspension a little however I have heard mixed reviews on sway bars, camber kits, tower bars, L-tuned steering ECU, ect. I am looking to get a little more performance in my handleing w/o too much sacrafice for the nice ride of a Lexus. I understand that there is a compromise when tweeking the suspension. I guess I am looking for a slight increase. I don't want it to ride like a stiff 5.0. I live in NH and we have sucky roads filled w/ pot holes, speed bumps, and grooves.

Power: Looking for a little more. I bought a Akimoto cold air intake on ebay for $60. However I read that it is pointless unless you upgrade the computer. It currently has a stock air box w/ K&N filter I would like to up the HP a little. I can not afford a turbo or supercharger.

Looks: New rims I like the look of the 17" chrome Lexus wheels however someone left the brake dust cleaner spray on them too long now they are spotted (spotted when I bought it). I am not looking to go 20" as I do not want any rubbing or harsh ride due to the low profile tires. maybe staggared 18" set up after my 17" tires get used up (they are brand new).

Thanks

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don't know what you heard about sway-bars, Strut-bars, lower chassis braces but IMO they're all essential upgrades that are needed if you want your GS to have superb handling, and they don't kill the ride quality.. They are all affordable and they do what they're supposed to.. But out of them you'll feel the most difference with the sway-bars.. Those will lessen the body-roll around turns.. I have every suspension upgrade except the Do-Luck floor-brace and my GS and it corners like it is on tracks.. I've even had some people tell me it handles like a exotic car..

Now for power, I think the best bang for your buck would to be to go with the SRT intake with their piggy-back ecu.. Exhaust really doesn't do much in regard to power increase, you'll get couple of horsies but nothing to dance over.. So if you want you can get an exhaust too..

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Thinking out loud here.....

I find that exhaust info really puzzling. Usually, on almost any factory car, you can get noticeable increase from exhaust upgrades. Better Cat. Convertors, bigger pipe size, lower restriction muffliers, even to the better bends of a mandrel bent pipe vs whatever the stock setup is.

That's not even discussing headers, which must be an obvious improvement if you can find a quality set.

I was wanting to upgrade my exhaust based upon all of that, but now you've got me second-guessing!! :cries:

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Sorry about that.. I'm talking about about mufflers.. Also, with all of that free following air coming out it really doesn't do anything.. Now with Forced Induction that's a different story, but on a NA motor you'd have to really tune it to see nice gains.. Don't get me wrong, with less restrictive headers, cats, and exhaust you'll feel something but you'll need more air coming into the engine and you'll need more fuel mixed with that air.. That's where you'll need to get something to tune it with. Something along the line of a ApexI S-AFC.. But without FI IMO you're really wasting your time and money trying to scrounge up a few extra rwhp.. And for the money you'll spend I don't know if it's really worth it..

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NEO,

I am not sure how low it is.  It was lowered when I bought it.  I was looking to upgrade the suspension a little however I have heard mixed reviews on sway bars, camber kits, tower bars, L-tuned steering ECU, ect.  I am looking to get a little more performance in my handleing w/o too much sacrafice for the nice ride of a Lexus.  I understand that there is a compromise when tweeking the suspension.  I guess I am looking for a slight increase.  I don't want it to ride like a stiff 5.0.  I live in NH and we have sucky roads filled w/ pot holes, speed bumps, and grooves.

Power: Looking for  a little more.  I bought a Akimoto cold air intake on ebay for $60.  However I read that it is pointless unless you upgrade the computer. It currently has a stock air box w/ K&N filter  I would like to up the HP a little.  I can not afford a turbo or supercharger. 

Looks:  New rims  I like the look of the 17" chrome Lexus wheels however someone left the brake dust cleaner spray on them too long now they are spotted (spotted when I bought it).  I am not looking to go 20" as I do not want any rubbing or harsh ride due to the low profile tires.  maybe staggared 18" set up after my 17" tires get used up (they are brand new). 

Thanks

So let's assume you will be riding on 18s. The ride quality degrades a bit from 16s to 17s but not much from 17s to 18s. The must have mod then would be to get front and rear sway bars. Since you are not looking for the absolute handling sways (TRD Racing blue), I would highly recommend the Daizen Sport Tuning sways. I have run both. The Daizens are maybe 95% of the TRDs in terms of handling crispness but the ride quality does not really change with the Daizens while you will be tossed around a bit with the TRDs. Try this to see if it is enough for you. Also, handling and ride quality is also determined by the shocks and springs you have. Do you know what shocks and springs are on your car right now?

There are no camber kits for the GS. You can wait on the STB until you see if the sways are good enough. The steering ECU helps tighten the steering at highway speed but not much at all at low speeds. The feel is somewhat subtle though. It is not night and day so YMMV.

Do you want more power or for the car to respond better? For daily driving, the GS400 has ample power. You can get a better response off the line by adding a high stall Torque Converter and a Limited Slip Differential. With these, you will not get more power, just more efficient power and take off at the line.

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  • 8 months later...
Thanks NEO,

I do not know what the owner before me put in the car for shocks & springs.  I'll ask him the next time I see him.

Thanks again for your response

Good morning from Indiana. I was doing a google search on information for sways bars and found this thread. I have an '03 IS300 SportDesign 5sp. I am running 19"s on my stock suspension and I want to lower the car and add sways. I only have 9500 miles on my car and I'm not an aggressive driver. I was looking for recommendations based on my set up. I have looked into the Daizen, Hotchkis and Ltuned sways and also the Tein HTech and Hotchkis springs. I do not want to sacrifice my stock ride quality though I do expect it to change slightly. Your advice is very much appreciated. BTW, I am also going to add a body kit: Kaminari front, Vizage rear but have not decided on side skirts yet. I have attached a few pictures of my car:

http://www.tunedparts.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=2197

Mayo

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l-tuned parts is a very good site to consider what mods to put on. I personally would go with:

- Strut tower brace

- Upgraded brake package

- tint

- HID's (if not already equipped)

- perhaps some sort of classy interior mod.

Let us know & good luck! B)

:cheers:

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  • 4 months later...
Sorry about that..  I'm talking about about mufflers..  Also, with all of that free following air coming out  it really doesn't do anything..  Now with Forced Induction that's a different story, but on a NA motor you'd have to really tune it to see nice gains..  Don't get me wrong, with less restrictive headers, cats, and exhaust you'll feel something but you'll need more air coming into the engine and you'll need more fuel mixed with that air..  That's where you'll need to get something to tune it with.  Something along the line of a ApexI S-AFC..  But without FI IMO you're really wasting your time and money trying to scrounge up a few extra rwhp..  And for the money you'll spend I don't know if it's really worth it..

I disagree...

more air going into the engine is restricted by the rate at which the engine can expell the exhaust (not directly of course). Remember, an engine is a vacuum and a pump. It sucks in air, through the intake system, and it pumps out exhaust gases through the exhaust system. Reducing whatever that hinders these flows make it easier for the piston/rod/cranks to move the gases into and outof the engine, which allows it to make more power. Now of course, bringing air into the engine is more important, so I would say work on the induction before the exhaust, but it's still important to work on the exhaust. And yes, tuning is most important. That's why you buy Japanese manuf exhaust for japanese cars. HKS, Trust, Apexi makes great exhaust systems, that'll add 5-15 hp in the mid-high rpm range. Now, some might say that's not worth $500-$800 bucks, but you also get a nice sound and aggressive styling in the rear end from it as well. So if that's worth it to you, go for it, if not, spend that money elsewhere (trip to Vegas)...

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