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About mkaresh

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  • Lexus Model
    2000 GS 400
  1. Found comparison at GMInsideNews, which got it from, which got it from Scans from GCZ placed more prominently at GMI: Essentially, they slammed the Lexus for steering, handling, and fun-to-drive. These areas alone totally account for the car's distance behind the second-place Audi, itself a point behind the Mercedes. Your tastes and priorities may vary from C&D's, which is the point of my take on comparison tests.
  2. I conduct vehicle reliability research, and have been surprised how often cars get damaged while in the dealer's care. As a result, when I revised the survey form recently ( ) I included "Damaged by shop during a repair trip" among the choices for a question about the source of the problem. I also ask who paid for the repair, with one choice being "Dealer or shop (usually because they caused the problem)." In all of the cases I've heard about so far the dealer readily accepted responsibility and covered the cost of the repair, but they were all obviously the dealer's fault. Sounds like the dealer in your case is making full use of plausible deniability.
  3. Briefly drove the new G35 today. It feels like a 40/60 mix between the old G35 and the larger M. Smoother and more refined, with an upgraded interior, but also larger (though the actual dimensions haven't changed much). In comparison, the IS has a sportier driving position and feels smaller. Which will be good or bad depending on personal priorities. The interior in the IS felt more special to me, perhaps because its more like that of a sports car. I intend to take a more extended drive in a six-speed G35 sport when one arrives. That plus more sleep will enable a more thorough and coherent evaluation.
  4. You're probably talking about the first-generation G35. A new one with a much improved interior was introduced a few days ago. Also, I haven't checked, but was the IS more than a 330i (much less the new 335i) when the two are comparably equipped?
  5. Not complaining, just an observation. When I first saw it, I figured I'd typed the title wrong, and regretted this as you cannot edit the title. I suppose old members are used to seeing "IS" as "Is." I'd be more than happy to refer visitors to my site back to this forum if an admin wants to contact me and set something up. I have such an arrangement with a number of forums.
  6. I just entered pricing for the 2007 G35 into the database of my price comparison site. Data for the 2007 IS, TL, 3-Series, C-Class, A4, etc. were already in there. So it's now possible to easily see how these compare, before and after adjustments for features. Page for the IS, with quick links to the most common comparisons: I thought the price for the heavily revised G35 would increase, but it did not. VERY competitive pricing. One word of caution: I cannot begin to understand Lexus' scheme for offering different combinations of options at different times in different parts of the country. So it's quite possible that my site will configure an IS that is not actually available. I don't have this trouble with any manufacturer but Toyota/Lexus. Edit: I now see that this forum's software automatically "corrects" for a double-capped word. Not very useful on a Lexus forum.
  7. Depends almost entirely on how much room you want/need. If you need a lot, then...LS.
  8. I thought I remembered that some panel had to be removed for an oil change, thanks. The price definitely sounds much better if a loaner is included. I wonder if this is what separates the cheaper dealers from the pricier ones. My father did have them inspect a few things, found nothing wrong. But that might be why he got a loaner. I don't know if his dealer (in Va. Beach VA) would include a loaner for just an oil change.
  9. One factor might be ease of access. When my father had a 2000 LS 400, they might have had to remove an access panel or two just to get to the oil fill--the engine was enshrouded in plastic. Or maybe not, it's been a while. Are the drain plug and oil fill tube readily accessible in these cars? If so, oil is oil and an oil change is an oil change. Drain it out the bottom and fill it again from the top. I guess there might be something special about the Lexus filter. Might also take more than five quarts. But at a couple bucks a quart that shouldn't be a killer. BUT if they give you a loaner, like they did my father when he had the oil in his GS changed the other day, then that's your difference. A one-day rental of a midsize luxury sedan like the Lexus ES (what they gave him) would easily run $40. Do all of these prices INCLUDE A LOANER? Around here Jiffy Lube and other such quick change chains are far from the least expensive, usually about $25. But independent shops often run specials for as little as $13, and under $20 is easy to find. I never thought an oil change for $47.50 would seem like a bargain.
  10. I see you live in Alabama, where this isn't an issue. Up around Detroit, I rarely notice people running cheap aftermarket rims in the winter. The only exception tends to be snow tires on performance cars, where some people step down to a smaller diameter. But the average consumer doesn't give it a thought and would think it a severe inconvenience to change rims twice a year. I have winter tires, and they work great. Everyone in a place like Detroit should use them, but few people do. Every once in a while someone emails me asking which AWD would be good in the snow, because they don't feel secure in their current car. I often often them to just put proper winter tires on their current car. But for some reason many people think that the car has a much larger role than the tires in winter traction. Probably all of the TV adds that push the benefits of 4WD in the snow. The ad budgets for winter tires are miniscule in comparison. See lots of OEM chrome rims in the winter, and I don't think I've ever seen something like a Chrysler Pacifica or Lexus ES with a "winter" rim. No idea if the problem Lexus rims where OEM or not, and doubt the tire shop would know, either. So it's quite possible that they're aftermarket. When entering data on my pricing site, I have noticed that Lexus chrome rims are marked up about 100%, which is highly unusual and makes the MSRP very high.
  11. Are there cars with unidirectional tires that have full-size spares? Doesn't sound like a good combo.
  12. Good idea on the second set of rims, especially if the originals are chrome (probably not with the IS of course). Also, this way you don't have to pay a local shop to mount them--I checked into this option once, and it was pricey. I've written about rim corrosion here: A tire shop told me they see the problem most with chrome rims on Chrysler and Lexus models. I am a bit disturbed that manufacturers never advise against using the rims they sold you in the winter. At least I've never seen a note to this effect in a brochure alongside the "These are performance tires and might only last X miles..." note. My Michelin winter tires came from CostCo. They often have a $60 rebate on four, making them considerably cheaper than TireRack.
  13. I can't see anyone actually doing this, but then it probably happens. As for the dealer, they just aren't thinking. No doubt they send the same list of services out for every model. I'm surprised there's nothing there about changing the transfer case fluid.
  14. Thanks for the comment. Toyota/Lexus is the ONLY manufacturer where this is a significant issue. The available package combinations change from place to place and time to time, and I don't have the time or energy to track this all down. Even large sites like Edmunds don't deal with this BS system, they just present Toyota/Lexus option packages the same way I do. The only exception might be a site that actually offers cars for sale like Carsdirect, but I haven't checked. With no one but Toyota/Lexus can you go to the manufacturer site and see packages you simply cannot get. Sure, with others there might be late availability options or limited production options, but with Toyota there are often many packages that will simply never be available where you live. That said, I should include a note to this effect. What people should do with Toyota/Lexus if they're interested in the actual sticker prices is learn which packages are available, and then use the "user selected" mode to select the features they want accordingly. Far from ideal, but I honestly don't know what else to do. I'm hoping Toyota will come to its senses and stop playing shell games with its packages. And THAT said, if you're mostly interested in a feature-adjusted price comparison, to get a sense of how large the price difference is for the basic car, then it doesn't matter so much how this shakes out. The final price might not reflect what you'll actually have to pay, but the feature differences will largely come out in the "wash" of the feature adjustments. The prices will be lower, but the cars will also include fewer features. The MSRP tops out just under $91,000, and this is with the insanely overpriced "Executive Class Seating Package." I suppose taxes might add $7,000 or so. But what's the other three? Dealer accessories or market adjustment? Is your mom's friend planning to ride in back, with a chauffeur? Otherwise I'm not seeing the value of the Exec package except for those people who simply must have every feature, even ones they'll never have a use for. Thanks. And dude, your car looks just like the 1990 my father used to own, except for the wheels. He's had a GS in recent years, but has always missed the smoother, quieter ride of the LS.