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Why Do You Buy Lexus?


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Just curious guys - especially for you new car buyers but how come you picked Lexus over BMW/Mercedes/Audi. For me, I buy second hand and reliability has top priority but if you buy new there would still be warranties on all the cars so it's a different story. Admittedly every time a E92 325i BMW drives past I ask myself if I made the right choice with the IS250.

I do like the equipment levels and quality of materials used but still to some people Lexus = Toyota ;)

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Yes and that is a great thing being owned or part of Toyota

Toyota score higher in JD Powers quality tests than BMW

And Lexus score higher again.

All Lexus in Australia are made in Japan all having the same level of fantastic build quality.

BMW are not all made in Germany, many made in South Africa or worse the USA.

So much for German build quality.

You made the right choice so just smile next time a South African taxi cruises past wearing its 325i badge :)

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I bought Lexus for a heap of reasons.

For a start, I love Japanese precision. Lexus standards and tolerances throughout the manufacturing process are a lot better than their rivals to me.

I love Japanese reliability. I've never had any major issues with any vehicle I've had that was made in Japan. Yet, I've got family members who love to tell others they drive a Benz or a BMW, but fail to tell them it's a knock-off, made in South Africa or Mexico, and that half the stuff in them doesn't work as it should. My Aunt for example - Mercedes ML, just out of warranty, in outback Australia. Battery failed, leaked battery acid and killed ECU (all located under the driver seat). MB couldn't if cared less and she was swamped with a bill for thousands and thousands if dollars to replace everything, plus have the car towed 800kms to a dealer.

I love Lexus after sales care and support. The dealer I've dealt with for my 2 purchases couldn't do enough to help me and made sure that every dealing with them was nothing short of first class - be it purchasing, questioning, servicing, warranty claims etc. The local BMW dealer wouldn't even ring my mother a taxi when she dropped her 3 series in for a service, let alone lend her a car or drop her to work. Very poor form.

You can't beat the value for your money, the tech you get for your money and the bang you get for you buck when you compare any Lexus model to their nearest European rivals. Another aunt of mine with a C180 Benz paid thousands of dollars for individual extras to bring an entry level C Class up to the same price as my 2011 IS350 F Sport, yet still never got leather (MB vinyl FTL), heated or cooled seats, electric seats, electric steering column, navigation etc.... Massively overpriced IMO.

I'm also a car detailer and there is no better car to work on from a detailers perspective than a Lexus. It's a pleasure to correct the paintwork on a Lexus, vacuum in the quality carpet and woollen mats, clean the hydrophobic coated glass, treat the semi-analine leather etc.

Its the small details that usually go unnoticed (not to me though) and their relentless pursuit of perfection.

I'm a fan of Lexus, always have been - I just hope they never change their ways...

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I'm probably in the minority of Lexus owners who do not have it as a company car, so did a LOT of research before making the plunge.

The deciding factors were:

  • The reviews I read in "The Dog & Lemon Guide"
  • My mechanic who is ex-BMW and whose clients are ditching Mercs and Beamers for Lexus &
  • My son's experience with a BMW 320

And it's been fantastic - concur 110% with what ISF-350 has said about Lexus dealer service !!!

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Yes and that is a great thing being owned or part of Toyota

Toyota score higher in JD Powers quality tests than BMW

And Lexus score higher again.

All Lexus in Australia are made in Japan all having the same level of fantastic build quality.

BMW are not all made in Germany, many made in South Africa or worse the USA.

So much for German build quality.

You made the right choice so just smile next time a South African taxi cruises past wearing its 325i badge :)

Well said dis-lex-sic

You couldn't have put it any better.

After having owned Toyotas for many years I can attest to there reliability and resale value.

My decision to buy Lexus was made on research and the points you make not to mention the Bang for Buck.

People who compare Lexus to Toyotas usually drive BMW or Mercedes..

Edited by manboy
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I've had a Mercedes (C-class) for seven years - still looks and drives like new, with never a problem. I read the review in the "Dog & Lemon Guide" - in my opinion that book is a lemon. Full of inaccuracies, half-truths and straight out BS.

I bought my first Lexus as a second-hand RX350. It came down to a choice between that and a Mercedes ML. The Lexus was a much nicer car to drive, felt luxurious compared to the Benz. When it came time to trade up, I shopped a new Lexus against Mercedes-Benz ML, Audi Q5, BMW X3, Volvo XC-60, Volkswagen Tourag and Jeep Grand Cherokee. All quite different, all very nice. But after getting out of each of them and into my old Lexus I thought "this old car is better than any of those new ones". In the end it was a no-brainer - Lexus RX450h. Wonderful!

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At the time I bought my first Lexus, my reasons included:

  • My admiration of Lexus models since the LS400 champagne glass ad which was first shown in Australia in 1990. That was followed by subsequent drooling moments: the appearance of the GS 300 at Sydney Airport in 1997, the rear of the first-generation IS, the 2IS "Move as One" ads and the LFA exhaust teaser billboards in 2010 which reassured, "Yes, it's a Lexus."
  • Mercedes-Benz seemed too pretentious. I was also influenced by earlier C-Class sedans which, with their black plastic door handles, screamed, "Built to a price."
  • Aversion to being given the label usually reserved for BMW buyers.
  • My preference for "understated elegance".
  • Ignorance of Audi as a luxury brand: I genuinely thought Audi was just another try-hard prestige brand, like Peugeot and Renault.

Since buying my first Lexus and joining the Club, I have discovered other reasons for sticking with Lexus; but they're the reasons why I bought Lexus in the first place.

The earlier E92s are probably the best compact executives BMW ever made, with all reviewers banging on about "communicative steering". With the switch to electric power steering, the switch to a grille built more for pedestrian safety reasons than for beauty, and the retention of an outdated interior, the best 3 Series may be a thing of the past. And need I mention reliability and maintenance? I keep on reading about how smooth the BMW inline-six engine is but, almost every time I pass by one, I feel it's in dire need of a service.

Edited by Lexus Nerd
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For me, I have always been a Toyota guy, I dont really know why, but back in school days for some reason, there was a Lexus Brochure in th Library (I use to always just go to the car sections in the Library) and it was showcasing the Lexus LS400. I just loved all its features. I remember the Door mirrors dimmed headlighst behind you, or the Car phone in the center arm rest in the back. I remember it was $152k back then (90's) and thought I would never own one but I can dream.

When I finished school, my first car was a 1975 RA23 Celica, then I went to an EP82 Starlet GT, then the list just grew, Supras, Cressidas, Coronas, and then in 2002 I bought a 99 model IS200! I eventually put a 1JZGTE in it as I wanted more power lol (that was a very costly experience). Ive had 3 MR2a, 4 Supras (I just got a soarer 1JZ VVTi 2 days ago too!), 2 Landcruisers, 2 Coronas, 2 Cressidas, Camry, Echo, 2 Starlets, the list never ends haha..The main thing with the list is reliability and build quality. In all those cars, knock on wood ive never had a major issue (Probably clutch letting go in one starlet, or a fire in an MR2 from a mechanics error!)

So it was time to get a family car, at first we thought the RX350, but I thought they are too popular, then the wife said an IS250, but same, popular and very tight in the back for a baby. So I went left field for a GS430, Its different, it has every option under the sun, has power, reliable, and even isnt too bad on fuel for a V8.

Edited by Lexus Nerd
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I did a lot of research and comparing when deciding to trade up from my Evo IX and the missus insisted that it was time I grew up a little as I gave the thumbs up to every evo driver I spotted :D .

I was after something that was value for money, had good reliability and wouldn't cost an arm and a leg to maintain. I also wanted to something that had the performance and agility like my Evo. I was reading Lexus comparos to BMW, MB, Audi, VW and Infiniti. Bang for buck nothing came close, beside Infiniti, however there was something about Infiniti's G and M models which did not seem as appealling as the IS and the Q was too far away.

Essentially it came down to a test drive and dealer customer service. I was very impressed by the customer service and the way the IS350 drove. The F-sport had subtle but menacing looks with an air of sophistication and luxury. I knew it was the one for me. The hard part for me was deciding to either wait and save for 3IS 350 F sport or get a superceded model. I decided to get a 2nd hand 2012 IS350 F-sport as I figured the extra savings could go towards hourse.

My IS is my first Lexus and definitely would not be the last.

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I took my Lexus to a MB/German specialist today to get serviced as they were $200 cheaper than Lexus even after I supplied my own genuine parts (just a simple oil/brake fluid change). I asked the manager afterwards how reliable BMW/MB are and he told me they were a whole different type of fish from Lexus. It'll keep him in business as they visit the shop very often but in all honesty he recommended that I stay with Lexus. He also commented that after you step into a MB/BMW/Audi after driving the Lexus you notice that the germans aren't as smooth or refined and to test drive them myself to see the difference.

I was actually quite surprised with his answer and it just reconfirmed the reasons why I bought the 2IS in the first place. He mentioned the 3 series from E90 onwards turned to crap so luckily I didn't buy the E92 lol.

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  • 1 month later...

We had a Corolla (last of the Australian-made ones before the current Thai rubbish), that was deadly reliable but the engine was very tired. I looked around for a smallish 4 door RWD sedan/wagon, and my preferences were for a GT4 Corolla Wagon with silvertop 4A-GE or a Toyota Altezza RS (with the 3S-GE Caldina a close third, mainly rejected due to looks). The GT4 and the Altezza aren't legal to import, and the few imported-by-owner Altezza's were all manual's and generally pretty beaten up. So it came down to a 3 series vs an IS200/300. The 3 series I have driven a few that have belonged to the boss over the years, but after seeing the cost of brake services it came down to the IS200/300. I drove a IS200 and loved the handling but the performance...yikes. Totally gutless. So it ended up with the IS300. I upgraded the suspension like the factory should have done, and changed the cams to give more mid-range (BC262's) at the major service (150k). It's now around 190k and runs like new. Apart from a few small niggles (that ^*(%ing fresh/recirculated button, the boot that always falls down, the dinky hood prop (replaced that with the FIGS struts), it's still a great car.

Not sure what it will be replaced with...the IS250 is bigger and slower (and the current one looks like a HSV). A RWD petrol CT200 with the IS250 engine sounds nice...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Value for money was the big thing for me. There was a lot included with lexus but more than that I just really cannot stand the extensive list of options provided by the other three. Give me my car and I don't want to think about what else I can do to it; a few things here and there but that's it. A lot of this comes down to me agreeing wi lexus' approach in priciple ie buy a car and not adding an additional 20-30% to the rrp with the options list.

Personally I've always been a fan of BMW and merc. I loved Marc's build quality of old (ie the w124/w140 era and before) however that level of over engineering went in the mid 90's. BMW I LOVE their NA inline 6's. If they still built a 230kW+ naturally aspirated inline 6 that is fun to drive I'd be going there. However I think over the past 5-10 years BMW have moved away from their ethos and what made me a fan of theirs.

As for Audi - save for the original Quattro's the less said the better; especially the ones from the last 10 years

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  • 4 months later...

BMW is the reason i bought a Lexus.My BM was a 318 E46 "German made" and i purchased Brand new. It is easily by far thr most unreliable vehicle i have owned and in the 6th year of ownership it cost me 12K in repairs. You dont want to know what the previous 5 years cost. Service is crap compared to Lexus. Dont stress you bought the right car. Amazing thing was after i got rid of it all these people i met with BMs had pretty ordinary reliability stories to tell.

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  • 4 months later...

Fact. Only Audi owner I know said, not to get one because his gearbox was playing up from day one. Audi Australia did nothing to rectify the problem.

Fact. My personal experience with BMW product is that they break down and cost an arm and leg to get fixed.

I have heard some horrible stories about Mercs but in general most owners seem happy.

My experience with Mazda and Toyota is that I have not had any problems at all. I had a corolla for ten years, did 180,000 kms and nothing but brakes, battery and oil changes was needed. So that is why I am likely to go with a Lexus to replace my Mini Cooper S.

The Mini has been a great car to drive and have fun with. The list of problems does take the smile of your face. Here is the list of problems over ten years: Key fob, two engine mounts, two supercharger belt tensioners, steering column, power steering pump, drivers automatic window, abs module, cam shaft sensor and steering control arm. The car has only done 110,000 kms.

So its back to a Japanese made car.

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  • 1 month later...

I recently got another Lexus, my previous SC400 Limited spoiled me for 16yrs of ownership with 400K KMS. These cars was well over engineered for its time.

I was looking to buy a MB or BMW and see what they have to offer. But after being spoiled by Lexus its hard to go backwards.

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  • 6 months later...

Hi Guys,

I know it is a late reply but just to put my 2 cents in I owned an E46 BMW and found it to be totally unreliable from Brand New and yes it was built in Germany. I also found the servicing department no where as good as Lexus. I was told that once you buy a Lexus there is a very high percentage that you will buy another one. I am one of those people and am on my second Lexus and would not consider any european vehicle.

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  • 2 months later...

My experience with Mazda and Toyota is that I have not had any problems at all.

So its back to a Japanese made car.

Hmm, agree...disagree.

Having to have owned and still own our Lexus since almost new, I bought it because it was part of a small list of SUVs, it was going to be that or the VW Touarag 150, Audi Q5 3.0L TDI or a RX 350.

To have owned a Ford Territory at the time before we traded in next to nothing (not happy)... but walked into a Lexus dealership in the city at about 10am and walked out at 5pm the same day. We made our choice quite quickly and made one phone call to a car mechanic mate of mine and he gave me the run-down if so to speak.

Since August 2012 till now, I've had nothing wrong with it other than wear and tear.

We bought a second car, shame it wasn't another Lexus, but we only have one car port and another space not-covered; so in the end we didn't want to spend that much. October 2014, we bought a Fiat 500 and lets just say that we've had a few things wrong with it; e.g. wipers, dash, parking sensors. And this was brand new, though it really annoyed me when they told me that they had to drive it to VicRoads to get it registered??? So by all accounts, we bought an ex-demo not brand new.

Recently, my mum bought after I did the research for her; since she wanted the colours to be red or green... lucky colours... and based on price of around 35 or so, the list narrowed down from an Audi A1, Lexus IS250, Chrysler 300c, and Mazda 3 / 6. The latter 3 models were relatively new with very low kays.

In the end, she ended up with a Mazda 3 XD Astina in a Soul Red with 23 kays on the clock, but a 2014. Being, practically the top of the line 3 series Mazda, she tried to compare it to our Lexus. Hmm.... I think not; granted its got some toys that I wish I had on my Lexus; but apart from a significant price difference and especially build quality... no way nearly close to a proper comparison.

Recently, I was looking at a diesel such as an Audi SQ5, Audi Q7 (new face-lift version), Volvo XC90 (new face-lift version)... but realised that there is a lot of kerfuffle going on with the diesel issue saga across many brand names.

So have since decided to hold off. We need to consolidate may be around Christmas or into the new year because of the in-laws coming in and since we're a family of 4 already, we don't have a great deal of space; so I'm thinking now on perhaps the NX200T F-Sport.... test drove one and was quite impressed with it.

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