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Looking To Be A Lexus Owner :)


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Hi all,

My name is Hunter and I'm 17. I joined up hoping to get some advice.

I currently drive a Subaru Liberty which has been my first car, and I am currently looking into an upgrade.

Currently I'm tossing up between a 06+ Liberty GTB and an 05+ IS250 manual.

I've been browsing Carsales and the insurance quotes and no need for an exemption on my P plates makes the Lexus look a much better option. My extended family all have Lexus' and I they have never had issues with them.

What is aftermarket support like? Are there ECU tunes or chips that give benefits for performance and fuel economy? Are there plenty of suspension options? (My Subaru is on coilovers and if I am to buy a Lexus I definitely couldn't go back to stock suspension). What wheel/tyre specs can the IS take?

How is the reliability? I understand that they're a branch of Toyota, however every car has it's faults. What are known faults of the IS250?

What should I look out for when I start looking at cars? I looked at an Automatic model this week however I didn't know what to looked for, apart from the basics when looking at a car.

Also, could anyone recommend any IS build threads to peruse?

Thanks to all who reply!

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Hey mate welcome to the forums

Currently as of yet there are no ecu tunes for the IS range as they are very difficult to decode and toyota doesn't release them. You can look at giving them an intake, exhaust for it to breathe better but apart from those options are really are no performance engine modifications. As for the performance handling options there are a large range to choose from. To be honest the stock sports/f sport factory suspensions are still pretty good in terms of handling and they are very comfortable in ride quality. If you purchase a prestige or a sports luxury model the suspensions will be very soft compared to the sports with alot of body roll.

The tyre size for the stock IS250/350 is 225/40/18 fronts and 255/40/18 rears. These are pretty huge for stock sizes however you can upgrade them to about 235 fronts and 265 rears as I have had them before (maybe even 275 rears).

With reliability... What can I say it's a Lexus and rarely breaks down. Though however some OLDER models have had issues with carbon build up (direct injection) and the navigation touch screen unit not working. These are easy fixes and you really won't have trouble with them.

If you consider getting a manual (this is pretty rare to find especially in sports luxury and sports models) It's preferable to get a fairly newer model as they have gone through gearbox upgrades ever since they were released (about 4/5 times I think). These use the dual mass flywheel which tends to hold revs for much longer sacrificing quicker shifting and such. You can look into upgrades into single mass flywheels to fix that (and a quick shifter of course).

I personally drive a manual 250 and I have these modifications and I can tell you that the throttle response and performance is greater than that of an automatic (I wouldn't say by great lengths but it's fairly noticeable).

When you're looking for these cars just make sure check the basic car stuff such as panel alignments, paint fading, scratches, dents, rubber erosion, and any other places where you think the car may have been tampered. Last but not least make you actually test drive the car and see whether the engine/transmission is healthy or not.

For a build thread I will be making one soon hopefully however if you want extensive ones with crazy stuff done to them it's best to visit the American Lexus forums clublexus

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Hi all,

My name is Hunter and I'm 17. I joined up hoping to get some advice.

I currently drive a Subaru Liberty which has been my first car, and I am currently looking into an upgrade.

Currently I'm tossing up between a 06+ Liberty GTB and an 05+ IS250 manual.

I've been browsing Carsales and the insurance quotes and no need for an exemption on my P plates makes the Lexus look a much better option. My extended family all have Lexus' and I they have never had issues with them.

What is aftermarket support like? Are there ECU tunes or chips that give benefits for performance and fuel economy? Are there plenty of suspension options? (My Subaru is on coilovers and if I am to buy a Lexus I definitely couldn't go back to stock suspension). What wheel/tyre specs can the IS take?

How is the reliability? I understand that they're a branch of Toyota, however every car has it's faults. What are known faults of the IS250?

What should I look out for when I start looking at cars? I looked at an Automatic model this week however I didn't know what to looked for, apart from the basics when looking at a car.

Also, could anyone recommend any IS build threads to peruse?

Thanks to all who reply!

Hi man i can say i been in the same position you are i was driving my sister jazz for little but then looked for a is250

then a sweet deal came up and i didn't let it pass 2009 is250 star fire white

its really up to you at the end of the day but i love my is250

there is a big range of aftermarket stuff you can buy but not that much due to it being a lexus like rear/front camber arms, coilovers, air bags, full after model body kits, intake pipes, exahust, mid pipe

No sorry there is not ECU tunes but it is a is250 only can push out 150kw but if you buy a is250 its for looks not speed

yeah there is plenty of suspension options i went straight to coilovers and the ride is very comfortable (currently selling due to buying air bags)

as for wheel specs im on 18X8-9 +32 or 35 offet with 20mm spacers with little rub running 245-45-18 front and rear 265-45-18

my is has been with me for 1 year and little bit very reliability if you take very good care of it don't just rip it everywhere and don't service it LOL

what to look at when you go see a new car, i looked for resprays, engine oil, log books, where been serviced, tow or repair stickers on car , place it was serviced ,

if you have any question hit me up on jdmst

here is my build

http://forum.jdmstyletuning.com/showthread.php?60292-Thomas-is250-P-plater-build&highlight=is250

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Hi guys, thank you very much for your information!

With reliability... What can I say it's a Lexus and rarely breaks down. Though however some OLDER models have had issues with carbon build up (direct injection) and the navigation touch screen unit not working. These are easy fixes and you really won't have trouble with them.

If you consider getting a manual (this is pretty rare to find especially in sports luxury and sports models) It's preferable to get a fairly newer model as they have gone through gearbox upgrades ever since they were released (about 4/5 times I think). These use the dual mass flywheel which tends to hold revs for much longer sacrificing quicker shifting and such. You can look into upgrades into single mass flywheels to fix that (and a quick shifter of course).

Has Lexus released a problem for the models with carbon build up? Subaru's have the same issue, and get a can of upper engine cleaner pumped through them every service.

Not to be rude, but how much does a clutch replacement cost for the IS? I got caught out with my Liberty for a $1400 replacement due to it being dual mass, and that was replacing it with a single mass lightened flywheel (it was $2k+ to replace it with a dual mass set up). I can only imagine the same on a Lexus would run the same if not more than that?

I personally drive a manual 250 and I have these modifications and I can tell you that the throttle response and performance is greater than that of an automatic (I wouldn't say by great lengths but it's fairly noticeable).

How do you find the 250 with these upgrades? I know they aren't a performance car however I haven't yet found the time to test drive one around work. With 150kw I'm not expecting great power but I also don't want to run into the same issue I did with my current Liberty - lack of power. I'm no noon but it grates on me having to rev the car out so much to merge onto the freeway or overtake.

When you're looking for these cars just make sure check the basic car stuff such as panel alignments, paint fading, scratches, dents, rubber erosion, and any other places where you think the car may have been tampered. Last but not least make you actually test drive the car and see whether the engine/transmission is healthy or not.

For a build thread I will be making one soon hopefully however if you want extensive ones with crazy stuff done to them it's best to visit the American Lexus forums clublexus

I'll keep an eye out for your build thread, I've been looking through some and getting ideas. I've been to look at another 250 auto to compare it to the Liberty GTB. Currently I'm deciding whether I want the power of the GTB or the luxury of the Lexus.

Thanks again for the info! :)

there is a big range of aftermarket stuff you can buy but not that much due to it being a lexus like rear/front camber arms, coilovers, air bags, full after model body kits, intake pipes, exahust, mid pipe

No sorry there is not ECU tunes but it is a is250 only can push out 150kw but if you buy a is250 its for looks not speed

yeah there is plenty of suspension options i went straight to coilovers and the ride is very comfortable (currently selling due to buying air bags)

as for wheel specs im on 18X8-9 +32 or 35 offet with 20mm spacers with little rub running 245-45-18 front and rear 265-45-18


How much extra room do you have under the guards? I was considering looking into some Works VSXX but I was hoping to go at least 9.5's rear. Obviously I'd have coils with camber arms and rolled guards if I went that wide.

what to look at when you go see a new car, i looked for resprays, engine oil, log books, where been serviced, tow or repair stickers on car , place it was serviced ,

if you have any question hit me up on jdmst

here is my build

http://forum.jdmstyletuning.com/showthread.php?60292-Thomas-is250-P-plater-build&highlight=is250

Thanks for all of your information, very nice IS by the way. I love the LMs on the IS!

Another random question, are there any online places to get factory gear? For example the F sport catback etc? Subaru has direct parts store online, I presume Lexus are the same?

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With the Carbon build up an upper engine clean should help, or you can go for the full throttle body clean for about $150 or so. I spent around 1.1k for a single mass fly with a spec stage 2 performance clutch shipped from the US. I did a bit of snooping on the internet and found out these work really well on the American clublexus forums. For a replacement dual mass I wouldn't have a clue haha never had mine replaced with a dual mass before.

For your performance question, throttle response is much quicker and revs shoot up faster in neutral so naturally your down shifts will feel much more sporty. When I first ended up replacing my flywheel I overshot the revs about 2000-3000rpms because the flywheel was so much more lighter (almost redlined it). Whenever I overtake or merge onto the freeway I always have alot of fun. These aren't that fast with 153kw but with 252Nm torque especially with the manual it feels adequate and fun to drive.

Also a while back we had a lexus dyno day meet and a few of us put up our cars onto dyno. A stock IS250 2009 model got around 119rwkw, 2011 with an exhaust around 122rwkw and mine got around 126rwkw. I had a midpipe and axle back exhaust at the time with a custom intake so I imagine with some proper mods and if the car's in great condition you could almost hit around 130rwkw (if you get lucky haha). These aren't fast cars but they aren't that slow either just that the weight of it slows them down (I think they're still slow though).

For factory F sport gear you can look at EBay as some dealerships in the US post their items on EBay (Like San Diego and North Miami). The sell pretty much the whole Lexus F Sport Catalogue such as the intake, catback, quick shifter, 19" wheels, Springs and shocks, under chasis strut brace, sway bars. Since these parts were manufactured as a joint project between Lexus USA and TRD Japan it's quite rare to find them in Australia unless shipped from overseas. Alot of members though have the F Sport Intake and some with the catback and suspension setups. Perhaps if you look for their For Sale posts on this forum you might hit some luck for a decent 2nd hand item.

If you really consider power that much you can also consider getting an IS350 ;)

PM me for any more questions you might have. Lets try keep this place clean =D

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How much extra room do you have under the guards? I was considering looking into some Works VSXX but I was hoping to go at least 9.5's rear. Obviously I'd have coils with camber arms and rolled guards if I went that wide.

i had alot of room never rubbed or anything but with the 20mm spacers if im going over a bump yeah ill hear a scrap noise, yeah VSXX are very nice for is250s

yeah go for it man 9,5 with about 28-35 offet should be good

no need for camber arms unless you want super flush look, i have them in my car due to me having bags soon but yeah i did roll my guards for hell of it same time

Thanks for all of your information, very nice IS by the way. I love the LMs on the IS!

Another random question, are there any online places to get factory gear? For example the F sport catback etc? Subaru has direct parts store online, I presume Lexus are the same?

thanks man :)

i believe there isn't but if you go on lexus website they offer after market parts just need call them up and ask then they will give you a quote

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