2003 Lexus RX Reviews - Page 2 of 2

2003 Lexus RX 300 3.0 Liter V6 DOHC from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2002
First year of ownership2005
Most recent year of ownership2006
Engine and transmission 3.0 Liter V6 DOHC Automatic
Performance marks 4 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.5 / 10
Distance when acquired15000 miles
Most recent distance120000 miles
Previous carLexus ES300

Summary:

Trust yourself rather than others!!!

Faults:

Timing belt replacement!!!

Tail light bulbs!!!

Replaced 235 Michelin "Cross Terrain" tires!!

General Comments:

Best car ever!!! Slow, but not a big deal.

For those who are afraid of the tranny failures, don't buy into that. Most of the tranny issues occurred because the owners had the wrong type of fluid changed. RXs only work with one type of fluid, Type T-IV Automatic Transmission Fluid, and make sure you replace it every 30,000 miles; some of the owners haven't changed the fluid at all, and when their RXs broke down, they blamed on the manual "not required to change fluid under normal conditions." Who knows what they did to their RXs. LOL!!!

Ask a Toyota or Lexus dealer to have other fluids like brake, differential, steering... changed too. I changed my tranny fluid at a Toyota dealer for only 140 bucks (Yay!!!). You will be okay if you have your car serviced "properly".

If you don't buy my story, go to www.autotrader.com and check out to see how many 150,000 mile RXs there are in U.S. More than those who have their RX tranny issues.

Good luck, and enjoy the car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd November, 2006

4th Nov 2006, 23:53

I can't agree with you on this story. I drive a lot and put a lot of miles on my vehicles in a very short amount of time. In 1999 I bought an RX300 deciding an SUV would be better than my previous LS400. In late 2001 I had 97,000 miles on the car and the transmission went. I had always done service at Lexus and had them do whatever they said needed to be done, along with transmission fluid changes. I traded that in when they finished for a 2002 RX300. I just traded it in 6 months ago with 143,000 miles and the original transmission. I asked Lexus why my 99 had it go, but not my 02. They told me 2001-2003 RX300 have a updated transmission. So stay away from 99-00, the 01-03 are better, but they still have had some go. The best bet is to buy the RX400h, an amazing SUV!

2003 Lexus RX 300 SEL 3.0 petyrol from UK and Ireland

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2006
Engine and transmission 3.0 petyrol Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.8 / 10
Distance when acquired1000 miles
Most recent distance20000 miles
Previous carLexus GS300

Summary:

Outstanding

Faults:

The car has been absolutely first class.

We have not suffered any problems with the gearbox or gear change and at 20K miles the Bridgestone tyres are only half worn.

The only grumble has been superficial rust on the bonnet (replaced with no quibble) and the paint on the alloys peeling so all 4 were replaced.. again no grumbles.

And if you don't use it for 2/3 weeks and it has a tracker you will find the battery is flat when you want to start it... a pain.

General Comments:

It has exceeded all our expectations.

Quiet and smooth and a pleasure to drive.

For us the ride is perfect, but we don't off road.

Sat Nav is a bit dated and the cabin could do with a little bit of an uplift, but that's nothing. Go for it!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd May, 2006

2003 Lexus RX 330 from North America

Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission Automatic
Performance marks 3 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 3 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
5.6 / 10
Distance when acquired5 miles
Most recent distance5000 miles
Previous carLexus RX300

Summary:

Definitely not the quality, luxury car that Lexus claims they produce!

Faults:

The RX330 has serious transmission problems. There is a dangerous lag between gear shifts and the car doesn't seem to know when to shift. There is a whining noise from the transmission. There is a popping noise in the transmission audible to anyone in the car.

General Comments:

The car has several other problems that I won't go into since the transmission problem alone is enough. The dealer admits there is a problem with the transmission, but since Lexus has not released a 'fix' for it they tell me there is nothing they can do. They tell me it is 'operating as designed'. At the dealer's suggestion I contacted Lexus about the problem. They also said it was 'operating as designed'. I have asked for a refund and they offered to send me to their arbitration company! This was during the first conversation without any investigation! They definitely know they have a problem, but will not come out and admit it. I loved the RX300 I owned, but am so disappointed in the RX330 and disgusted with the treatment received from Lexus... a company who claims the customer is so important to them!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 22nd January, 2004

16th Feb 2004, 20:45

I have noticed that all the 3.3L V6 in various Toyota/Lexus models have a difficulty deciding which gear. Though yours sound a bit more severe. I own a new 2004 Sienna that has the same 3.3L V6 with 5 Speed Automatic.

28th May 2004, 11:55

The automatic shifting is done through a torque converter which calculates desire torque relative to engine's RPM. For some reason, the max torque for RX330 is at low 3000 instead of the usual low 5000 for average cars. May it has something to do with it. I am driving a BMW 330xi and have test drove the RX330. The thing I noticed the most was the handling, it was very smooth, but not very responsive.

2003 Lexus RX 330 from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.5 / 10
Distance when acquired0 miles
Most recent distance10 miles
Previous carBMW 3 Series

Summary:

Very impressed by a test drive

Faults:

I have test driven this car only and cannot comment upon reliability or service costs etc. I expect this vehicle to be very reliable however.

General Comments:

I have noticed that many persons have reviewed the RX300, but not the RX330.

I have recently test driven one and have been most impressed by the sheer luxury and gadget count of this vehicle.

Although I currently drive a German car (with a few more years to go until it is due for replacement), I was very tempted by the RX330. It is a far better buy than the IS300.

If you actually have recently purchased one of these vehicles, your comments (or separate review) will be appreciated as I would really appreciate your input on reliability and service costs.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 13th September, 2003

15th Oct 2003, 07:55

I recently purchased a RX330. My previous vehicle was a RX300. The new vehicle proved to be more attractive, however it has a built in annoyance. Driven between the speeds of 60-70mph, the vehicle's transmission has a humming sound. The dealer insisted the noise is normal. They sent a factory representative who confirmed nothing wrong with the vehicle. I drove several others and they all make that annoying hum?. I am thinking about trading the car in after only three months ownership.

Average review marks: 7.6 / 10, based on 7 reviews