1997 Lexus ES 300 V6 gas from North America
Best car I ever owned
1. Radio LCD display (faded); bought the part and replaced it myself (easy fix).
2. Serpentine belt changed at 215K.
3. Time belt and water pump changed at 310K.
4. Brakes, rotors and emergency brake at 315K.
5. The car trunk stopped responding to the remote or the internal button in the cabin. Sprayed WD40 through keyhole on the trunk, and in a few minutes the issue was resolved.
6. Starter replaced at 330K (symptoms were that sometimes the car will not respond to the ignition key at all, while other times it will respond and start perfect).
7. Rattling sound. Found rusty lose covers under the fuel tank and catalytic converter/exhaust pipe area. Got them removed.
8. Front shockers sound. Sprayed WD-40 at top of both shockers, sound gone.
9. Front leather seat stitch opened up while the leather was still in very good shape. Found a $17 leather patch being sold on Amazon. Applied this leather patch over the stitched area, and the seat is looking fantastic, and the ugly look of the opened stitch is gone.
10. Transmission shifting issues, which started after a transmission oil change. Put in a bottle of Lucas and continued to use the car with problems. Though the transmission will die eventually, however it recovered in about a month's time, and has been running smooth ever since. This issue happened at about 230K odometer reading.
Excellent, excellent, excellent car. I have used it over longer distances non-stop, nearly 1000 miles, as well as daily city use without any issue. The car is so smooth and reliable that I don't ever wish to leave it. Now it is my son's car and he is equally happy with it. It will stay in our family until it dies, we will not sell it.
All the issues above were so minor, and mostly I was able to find a solution and fix it on my own. Besides above, the only other issue was that at about 280K the rear valve cover started a minor leak. I do not intend to fix it as I know mechanics will open the engine and create more issues (I will run this car as long as the engine and transmission work).
The car has developed rust on both sides of the rear wheels, as well as the clear top is peeling on the front driver's side too. The paint all over the rest of the car's body still is shiny new. I had it fixed for $900 (kind of new metal on the rusted area and nearly the whole car painted except the rooftop). After few days of painting, did apply "NuFinish" coat and it is mirror shining the black paint.
Great car to own, drive and maintain.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 19th September, 2014
13th Aug 2015, 16:44
Returning back to add some more info. The car is now at 345000 KM and running smooth. The only new issue I faced since my last update was some sound starting to come from the rear wheels occasionally. On my own inspection, I found that dust cover plates behind the rear disc brakes were completely rusted, rotten and hanging loose. My car mechanic removed them completely and I have no intention to put new ones back on. That sound is gone now.
The car is still running fine just on gas, and once a year a full synthetic oil change. Some day I will put up a YouTube video too (probably if it crosses 400K, which I think it will).