1999 Lexus GS 300 from North America


I love my GS300 Lexus, will buy again


The driver's side window, when pushed to go back up, will go up, but then roll back down on its own. They have replaced the motor once and made two adjustments since. It still does this off and on.

Replaced the weather striping along the front passanger window, but can still hear wind from that window.

At times when I am trying to start the car, the steering wheel locks itself and you have to shake it back and forth and turn the ignition key at the same time to get it to start.

General Comments:

I bought the car new from a Lexus dealer and have not had any serious repairs.

Replaced the battery at 40,000.

Replaced all brakes at 58,000.

Has great pick up on the highway and gives a very smooth ride.

The Lexus dealer that I use for maintenance is very slow and I have to wait forever it seems for them to bring my car around. The tech I am assigned to seems to argue with me when I complain about the wind noise or when the window goes up and down.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th July, 2006

31st Aug 2011, 02:14

The locking of the steering wheel is a Toyota signature security precaution. My old glory 1997 Toyota Camry does this, and so does my wife's 2005 ES330.

1999 Lexus GS 300 3.7 V6 from North America


Great Car, IF you don't have one Get one~~~!!!


Nothing has gone wrong with the car... Runs great!

General Comments:

Well I have had the car for nine months now, put a little of 10,000 miles on it, and it is still running like the day I bought it. Very good car, love it! IT is fast, roomy, and sexy... A true winner with the ladies... And the gas consumption is out of this world, I get 325-350 miles to the tank! And that includes 5 days of sitting in bumper to bumper traffic.

Lexus truly makes a great product!!! Love their products so much I am thinking about buying the new 2006 GS 300 and giving this one to my younger brother as his first car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd May, 2006

13th May 2006, 03:35

Oh come on, be realistic. Everyone knows GS300s are lousy on gas. 350 miles on a tank sitting in bumper to bumper traffic - not unless you are doing cruising on the highway.

29th Jun 2010, 03:07

If you ever get the chance to get one, do so. It is a very reliable car, and worth the money.

12th Dec 2010, 16:48

Now that my 1999 GS300 has hit 195K miles, it still runs like a new car, given that the Pioneer road LCD has faded and seat belt retracks slower than new.

All the normal wear and tear, changed oil every 5K miles per owner's manual, dyno or synthetic depends on my budget, lower ball joints and brake pads, tires. Nothing to complain about.

My co-worker's 95 GS300 has hit 300K miles, and that's where my car is heading.

26th Feb 2011, 15:52

Made a posting February 2009 and described my GS300 as heaven on earth. I still maintain that opinion, and now I have 410 000km on the odometer. Nothing much has gone wrong except the air conditioner compressor, which has been replaced. The down pulley broke again, and the serpentine belt fell off at 401000 km. Routine timing belt replacement was done while fixing the down pulley.

This car is a gem, and still commands looks. I love her so much, and intend to keep her as long as she keeps going. Just purchased the 2002 model with 165000km, and I hope I'll get the same service from this one. For reliability, Lexus does beat them all.

1999 Lexus GS 400 Premium 4.0 litre from North America


My first Lexus... and because of this GS, I may never buy another brand again


1. Starter failure at 101k kms. A known failure with high mileage. It's expensive to replace because it sits in the valley of the engine v-block underneath the intake manifold, so there is plenty of labor involved. I was told by a mechanic that because of the location of the starter, it's subjected to a lot of heat, which causes it to eventually die.

2. Worn front suspension bushings. Again, a known problem with high mileage. Lexus made them soft for a good ride, but as a result, they don't last, especially when taking into consideration how heavy this car is. Common symptoms are wandering in the steering, kickback under hard braking, etc. It's an expensive replacement, as you cannot buy the bushings alone... you have to buy new suspension components with the bushings already installed. There is a solution... Daizen makes aftermarket bushings for the GS... but finding a mechanic willing to deal with suspension parts that were not designed to have the OEM bushings come out is a problem I haven't figured out.

3. Headlight condensation. The seals are known to fail. If the car is still under warranty, it would have been replaced no charge. But I'm not under warranty >_<

4. Rear main engine seal. It leaked right after I bought it, and did a major scheduled service. I was in tears, because I had done a mechanical inspection on it prior to buying, and it was not leaking then (I did not buy from a Lexus dealer). But a product called Auto-RX saved me and it has not leaked since (http://www.auto-RX.com).

5. Sunroof shade rattles. There is a fix for it involving some kind of spacer, but I haven't been able to make it work =(

6. Bad ignition switch. Previous owner must have had a 50lb key chain, because it had damaged the tumblers inside the ignition, which sometimes means I cannot get the car to start. It's expensive to repair, because it involves pulling out the entire steering column, so right now I'm following the advice of the mechanic, and making sure the key is absolutely perpendicular and fully pressed into the ignition to ensure startup.

7. I have an intermittent coolant smell inside the car. I get this maybe 1-2 times every few months, and anytime outside of these times it's perfectly fine. It was originally diagnosed as a leaking heater core, but the mechanic is doubtful that is the cause, because it's not constant and is still present even when the HVAC is turned off. There are no visible exterior coolant leaks, no loss of coolant in the radiator, or anything in the oil. This one still remains a mystery.

General Comments:

The car is highly reliable for it's age and mileage. When I was shopping around I was also considering a BMW 540i because I loved how it performed and handled, which the GS cannot compete against. But when I read the horror stories about the 5-series reliability, I know I made the right choice.

I'm 6'2" and I find it roomy enough. We used to have a 1992 Jaguar XJ40, and the increase in interior volume is immediately apparent, but the Jaguar's wood and leather were much nicer than in the Lexus.

All the interior controls made sense to me the minute I sat in the car for the first time... a very good sign to me, especially if you have struggled through something like BMW's I-Drive with manual in hand just to turn on the damn radio >_<. However, the location of the mirror, fuel door, and trunk release controls could be better, but it's better than where they put it in the 2006 model.

The suspension is soft. Fortunately my GS came with TEIN coilovers, which made a huge difference.

The transmission is a 5-speed auto, and it's very smooth most of the time. When it's cold it's slow to shift, and sometimes can be tripped up when caught between gears at slow traffic speeds. I do like the manual e-shift buttons on the steering wheel... but from what I have read online, I am one of the few who actually use it.

I was worried about trunk space at first, but so far I haven't had a moment in which I couldn't fit something into it (within reason). I wish there was some sort of pass-thru between the rear seats though.

Brakes could be better. The car is heavy and the brakes only seem to feel adequate. I know the GS recorded short braking distances in magazine reviews... but I always feel it could be better. Supra twin turbo front brakes are a direct bolt-on... but I would need to find new wheels because my GS wheels will not clear.

Steering is not as nice as a BMW, but it gets the job done. Turning circle is surprisingly tight for a car this size.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th March, 2006

4th Apr 2006, 13:57

Out of curiosity, what would one expect to pay for all of these fixes? in the market for one, and I'd love a heads-up.

25th May 2006, 14:56

I found a competent private ex-Toyota mechanic who does work at $60cdn/hr, compared to the $100cdn+/hr Lexus charges here.

I had my starter rebuilt with OEM Toyota parts, bought from Toyota, not Lexus, as I think some of the V8 Toyota trucks use the same starter. To remove, rebuild, and reinstall, it was around $400cdn.

The bushings I still have not done. I was told the cost would be the same if I bought new Lexus parts installed, or reuse existing parts with Daizen bushings installed... expect to spend at least $1000cdn + front-wheel alignment (another $70?).

The rear main seal leak was fixed using auto-RX. Prices are on their website.

No $$$ figure for the sunroof shade. Turning up the radio or not opening it helps for now...

I was quoted $800cdn to repair the ignition switch, parts included.

The headlights are very expensive brand new. It is roughly $500-600cdn for each light housing, and you have to transfer all your HID hardware over from your old one to the new one. When ordering new, ask specifically for the 2003-2005 versions, because Lexus had redesigned the leaky seals for those model years. You could try Ebay/wreckers for used ones, but you may run the risk of buying another leaky set. There is some stuff on the internet on how to bake the lights in an oven to break the seal, take it apart and reseal it... I haven't done it yet, as my problem usually occurs only when it's raining heavily or in the winter.

The coolant smell is gone! But that might be because I am not using the heater as much because it's approaching summertime.

Hope that helps...