Nice car, but don't buy unless the trans has been replaced and the fluid has been changed every 12K
I bought this car for my wife brand new in July 2000. The trans on my RX started jolting in reverse at 77000 miles (in April 2008) which was out of the warranty period for me. The trans on this car is defective - you can find countless examples all over the Internet. Luckily while the transmission was on its way out, the car still ran and drove OK, so I had time to see what my options and costs were to replace the transmission.
I took it to Toyota and they could not replicate the problem and just replaced the trans fluid. Then I took the car to Lexus and they recommended to replace the trans. I then called Lexus and nicely expressed my disappointment and told them that I had changed the transmission fluid and found it disappointing that the transmission needed to be replaced, especially since every car that I ever owned never needed a trans service and went 200K miles without issues. Luckily on this car I had done a trans service at 25K miles for good measure although it didn't really help the trans from going. Talk about irony. Lexus agreed to give me a free trans but I had to pay for labor which cost about $1600. The trans would cost over $3200 but was supplied free of charge so overall I though it was a fair deal for a car out of warranty.
The rear hatch door latch went but was covered under warranty.
The cargo cover tore but was covered under warranty.
The Mass Air Flow sensor needs to be constatntly.
Cleaned but the dealer will happily replace it for you rather than clean it for about $400.
The rear head gasket needs to be replaced but I have just left it so far since it is not an immediate problem that needs to be addressed. A little oil leaks but not much.
I wouldn't buy another one but I do like the car. I will try to keep this one as long as possible but in the future I would probably avoid Lexus/Toyota because they are way over rated in quality. They do have great customer service but I doubt that you will get as good service if you buy the Toyotas. Maybe the Camry is a good car but I don't think the rest are anything special.
A 40K car should have been much more reliable and although they do drive nice I prefer reliability. If you do have your heart set on this car get a good warranty.
I own a 2004 Nissan Maxima which I bought 2 years old with low mileage. My last car was a 1995 Nissan Maxima that was still in great shape after 220K miles.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No
Review Date: 24th November, 2008