1990 Lexus LS 400 from North America


Best car I have ever owned


Alternator went bad at around 200,000.

Leather is extremely worn. Have found cheap place to get it replaced. ($1000 for entire car redone in leather)

Air conditioning compressor went out last August. ($1000 at air conditioner shop)

Climate control display no longer works, but controls are operable.

Currently need upper control arms and bushings. Haven't done it yet, because it will cost me $1600.

General Comments:

This is the best car (used or new) that I have ever owned. I bought this car with 170,000 miles on it, and have put another 100,000 on it. I spent more on the Lincoln I owned before it, and the Lincoln didn't even have 1/4 the miles on it before I decided to get rid of that money pit.

The Lexus is just as quick as the Lincoln was, but it doesn't handle as well. I found this out quickly while trying to take a corner in it the same way I used to in the Lincoln. I only made that mistake once!

If you want a reliable care that looks good, and has low maintenance cars, then I would definitely recommend this car. If you like a sporty, corner hugging ride, then you might not be happy with it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 8th August, 2005

1990 Lexus LS 400 4.0 V8 from North America




Lower balljoints @ 82K (warranty)

A/C compressor @ 92K (warranty)

Water pump @108K.

Steering rack @162K.

General Comments:

I have owned over 30 different cars since high-school – from Hondas to Explorers to Cadillacs to Corvettes – and my 1990 Lexus LS400 is by far the best. In fact, it may be one of the finest “machines” I’ve ever owned, be it automotive or other. It’s certainly not perfect…it’s needed some repairs – like replacement of the steering rack and ball joints - that I thought should have lasted a bit longer than they did. But considering that it has now provided 216K miles of service in very hard Houston stop-and-go driving (and three fender-benders), overall its reliability still rates much better than any domestic, and is comparable to that of any Japanese or German import. To really understand why Lexus owners such as myself love this car so much, I think you have to look beyond merely the not exceptional reliability statistics and high maintenance costs (especially if you have maintenance done by the dealer!). The car simply exudes quality: from the uncanny smoothness of the engine to the trim on the trunk hinges to the way the ashtrays glide open. And if the cost of maintaining this quality is a bit higher than “average”, so is the reward!

I bought this car used (with 10K miles) from a Lexus dealer; it now has 216K miles. I also have a 1999 LS400, which I also purchased used (with 24K miles – now has 95K miles) from the same dealer.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st December, 2004

1990 Lexus LS 400 from UK and Ireland


Smooth, powerful and now very good value, but not DIY-friendly


Main front-to-rear brake pipe found seriously corroded and likely to rupture imminently (even though the car had just been bought with a year's MOT!)

Some suspension noise (knocking); cause yet to be identified.

Power steering pump weeping (above alternator) - a common problem on these, and expensive if ignored.

Underside of car generally quite rusty. My 1983 Granada was in better shape underneath!

Metallic paint was faded and quite dull in places.

General Comments:

This car had been SERIOUSLY neglected by its previous owner(s) with little or no maintenance for probably 50k miles. However, I have so far found no faults, other than those listed above.

The car is extremely smooth and quiet, pulls like a train and without any hint of vibration or harshness. The brakes are powerful too, with no juddering or pulsing.

The seats are fairly firm, but long-term comfort is good (in my opinion the Mk2 Granada Ghia's seats and interior are more comfortable and impressive to look at).

The factory audio system is fabulous.

The memory function on the driver's door stores two settings for seat and steering column, but not the mirrors (surprisingly).

The beautifully clear instruments auto-dim at night when the brightness can be adjusted (it's fixed during the day, and can sometimes appear too bright!).

The fiddly door mirror control is not illuminated, and is hard to locate at night.

Climate control system is fantastic.

There's not much maintenance you can do yourself on these cars, especially without a garage hoist, however there's a very good website with illustrated tutorials (www.lexls.com). Change the timing belt at home? Forget it!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th December, 2004

7th Jan 2005, 06:31

Having owned one of these (and spent some major dough on it) I thought I might be able to help. Front suspension noise possibly ball joints, quite common and can go well before 100,000 kms. Whatever you do, fix the power steering pump before the alternator gets killed too. You can often repair the pump for about a third of the price of a new one, you'll have to go somewhere other than Lexus dealer though (I went to a power steering specialist). Lexus dealer only interested in selling a complete new one. Hope that helps!