1999 Lexus RX 300 from North America
I would never buy another one
Transmission is not shifting properly when cold, and the engine is dripping oil.
I purchased a 1999 Lexus RX300 based on the Consumer Reports recommendation for best used cars between 8 and 9K.
Two weeks after I purchased it, the transmission would not shift from 3rd to 4th gear until I had driven the car for about a mile. I tried to trade it yesterday for a new vehicle and was told that the 1999 RX300 also had a problem with the engine not cooling the oil properly, causing the block to crack and the engine to seize.
This morning, I noticed oil on the garage floor. So much for Lexus and Consumer Reports.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No
Review Date: 15th December, 2009
The not shifting from 3rd to 4th is actually so the RX300 will warm up quicker. The vehicle is designed that way. I would think you might actually check with a Lexus dealer before making the assumption that something is wrong with your RX300.
As for what you were told by the dealer where you were trying to trade your Lexus in. I am guessing that they were referring to the "sludge" problem with this engine. I also imagine that they were bringing it up to try to get your RX for less.
Why don't you just drive & ENJOY your RX300, as they are fine vehicles.
(If your oil leak is bothersome, you can always get it repaired)
Is this last comment from a Lexus dealer? I had a transmission specialist tell me that this was a problem.
No not a Lexus dealer - a former RX300 owner. We owned a 1999 model (over 130,000 miles). Do a little research online or better yet ASK a Lexus dealer. Was your "transmission specialist" trained and knowledgeable about these transmissions?
99 RX300's did not shift into high gear until engine temps reached a specified range. This is normal. They changed this on the 2000 model and eliminated it. I had a '99 RX that did the same exact thing.
Also never had any transmission issues with it, and traded it in at 134,000 miles.
Only issue I had was knock sensor. Dealer wanted $1200 for parts/labor because the intake manifold has to be removed to access the knock sensor. I had a mechanic I know do it for $450. Other than that, it was an incredible vehicle and I loved it.