Lexus LS400 Reviews & Ratings

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Lexus LS400 (32 Reviews)
This is the best Lexus ever. When we bought it, it had 198,000 miles on it. It now has 240,000. We have had no major issues. We replaced the radiator, power steering hoses, and the pump. Usual maintenance on brakes. It is a comfortable car that has great acceleration and has been an extreme joy to drive. We're interested in looking for a newer model Lexus at this point, but I kind of hate to give this one up. When we first bought it 3 years ago, we read some reviews that indicated that people were getting an average of 350,000 on the engines. I have a feeling that this car will be getting the same. Fast, powerful, comfortable, roomy, reliable.
I purchased this car new and now have 208000 plus miles on it. My wife and I made many trips of over 3000 miles over the years in it,and we never had a single problem. The only money spent on this car has been for normal maintenance and for things that are subject to wearing out, such as batteries, timing belts (2) alignments. and a very few lights. This has been by far the best riding and most reliable car I have ever owned, which included Jaguar, Buick Electra, and miscellaneous Fords, Chevrolets,and Hondas. I expect it to keep running well for the rest of my life.
What a great car! I purchased this car while rebuilding my finances post recession. I've put approximately 75,000 miles on it since purchase, including pulling a heavily loaded trailer from CA to MI in 2013. I still average 24mpg on road trips, and 22 mpg on my daily commute.

I purchased my 93 LS400 with 185000 miles in Dec 2011 for $900. It was blowing white smoke, the previous owner had been told it was a blown head gasket. It turned out to be the power steering pump leaking into the exhaust manifold. I had the heads machined anyway just for piece of mind.

Intial road worthiness preparation: Machine heads, replace battery, belts, hoses, power steering pump, tires, lightbulbs, timing belt, and water pump using work from home mechanic = $1100.00
Dec 2011 Repaired steering wheel adjustment mechanism =- used a zip tie on the adjusting mechanism - found the repair on youtube. $1.00
2012 Replaced catalytic converters - used universal cats from an independent muffler shop = $500.00
2012 Replaced Engine computer- sourced it on ebay and sent it in for rebuild. Installed it myself - $150.00.
2013 Replaced water pump - Autozone unit failed. Used work from home mechanic - $300.00
2013 Power amp on stero malfuncioned computer failed. Never repaired.
2013 repaired washer fluid pump - $100
2013 replaced thermostat - used a shop $300.00
2014 lower Tie rods, upper control arms and ball joints, front brakes. Again used a work from home mechanic - parts and labor $500

Total repairs over 3 years including initial rehab of car and normal wear and tear items such as brakes and tires - approximately $2900.

Overall, including the cost of the car, I've spent a total of $3800 over three years. Since it's initial road worthiness preparation of $1100.00, I've spent only $1800.00 including brakes and tires. That is only $600.00 per year! With Oil changes and wiper blades, I'm probably closer to $700.00 per year in maintenance costs. Had I used a Lexus dealer for repairs - it would have been in the vicinity of $6500.00 in repairs. Had I used an inexpensive shop, repairs would have run around $3500.00.

It's an extremely reliable car, but to keep costs of ownership in check, research your repair issues, get a good diagnosis, shop on line for parts, and find a certified back yard mechanic for your labor.
Update to my previous review Visitor, San Jose, CA, October 30, 2011 13:44

298,500 miles and rising. Original engine and transmission. I just changed the timing belt again (interference engine) and I had to have the crankshaft pulley replaced. Bummer - Still running strong though. I have to milk it though as I just purchased cars for my Wonderful wife and two kids. I recently changed to a high mileage motor oil mixed with Lucas oil stabilizer. I changed because the valves were starting to make a little noise and the extra viscosity helped a bit. I am changing back to a full synthetic (probably Mobil 1) along with the Lucas. This is an excellent combination for this car. I am hoping that I can milk it to 350,000 - 400,000 miles, but wow that is scary. I may have to have the valves tightened up. I would love to do it myself, but 32 valves is a lot of valves ! Good Luck - if you can find a 1997 Lexus LS 400 with low miles and a great price, I say "Go for it" !
Best car ever, brought in 2004 -kept oil change and tune up,and brought new tires; I never had to spend anything thing else on it. It is a ladies car, problem free, next car will definitely be a lexus, had this car going on 9 years, getting brakes put on it this weekend 6/29/13 for the first time. Plan to keep it as long as it holds up, body in good condition,I get compliments on it all the time. Plan on buying a new one next year just because I want a later model car and keep my 99" I will not trade it for anything. I'm Lexus for life.
this car cost Mercedes Benz lead engineer his job! (due to panic decisions) and for good resin, it is better than any Mercedes of the pre-2000 era
Owned this auto for 12 years. Have had 2 problems, most of all it is important to continue to keep maintenance up, which is what I do.
About 3 years ago replaced alternator and battery. Having to replace the starter today on 10-8-12. Overall this is the best auto I have owned. This is a low replacement auto. Runs exceptionally well.
When I do get another auto I want a Lexus.
We have a 1990 ls400, 160k miles, the power steering pump leaks fluid into the alternator causing it to go out. We're replacing both items but, the instrument panel light is going haywire while this is happening. Does anyone know or have had similar issues & did the replacement of the alternator & power steering pump fix the problem with the instrument panel? Thanks for the feed-back.
my transmission shift fine without turning on my headlight switch.But
at night when i turn on my headlights on my transmission doesn"t shift
and my radio lights comes on also when i step on the brake.does anybody no the problem.
I bought this car at a car auction in 2000. It had 86,000 miles on it. I now have over 259,000 miles on it and it runs like a champ. I use a full synthetic oil combined with Lucas Oil Stabilizer, a K&N Oil Filter and I change it approximately 8000 or so. I want to milk this bad boy over 300,000 miles ! The only issues that I have had in the past 11 years or so was the power steering pump and lines, and the alternator. This is an interference engine so I have had the timing belt/water pump replaced twice already. You will also want to drain the transmission and replace that filter as well. I have done that twice too. The body is great (I wax it regularly and use a clay bar) and it is very nice and roomy for long family trips !
ihave a broken wire in wire loom from ecm module to #6 injector
how do i run bypass wire.
leaks oil and rear window is broken
A friend of mine has this year & model with over 240,000 miles on it. I spent a week with him and fell in love with it. I came back home to Phoenix and found the same year and model with 114,400 miles on it. I absolutely love it! It rides like it just came off the show room! I took it in for a timing belt & a small leak around the oil pan. Other than that, this car is awesome and will serve me well for many years to come. Absolutely the finest car I have ever owned.
watch for valve seal leak over 180000, suspension issues ie tie rods and strut adjustments or repairs
Best car i have had its got 269,956 miles and she still going have had no problems i cant fix very good car and im going to have it for a long time rather have this one than a new one.
This 92 Lexus has to be the nicest vehicle I've owned. When I have routine maintenance done (oil change, washed, smogged) , service personnel make comments about how beautiful the style of body it is as well as how reliable this particular model is based on their experence. Looks good even next to much newer cars. Some service is necessary as it is 20 yrs old. Quiet, smooth and stylish sums up my experience with this beautiful automobile.
Best car I ever had!!
HELLO this car has been a great investment .225k .still runnign strong.
308,000 miles runs like a champ just started having brake light issues but cant complain
I bought this car 38 months ago with 69k miles on it. It just turned over 150k and I still love it. It is by far the nicest and best car I have ever owned and I've owned a lot of cars in my 54 years of driving. One mechanic said that the 1999 LS 400 is a tank and will treat you well as long as you do the regularly scheduled maintenance and take care of all repairs; which I have done. The only real repair was the power steering pump and the brake lights in the back window. I highly recommend it as long as you know the car history and it was well maintained as mine was and still is of course.
I purchased this car with over 100k two years ago and it was the best purchase I ever made with a used car. The maintenance was well kept by the previous owner so timing belt and normal items were practically new. There are common problems with p/s, wiring harness in trunk, LCD failure on the climate control, but this almost twenty years old now with over 150k. Everything works like a new car except I should have looked for a 1993 with larger disc brakes. I used after marktet rotors...big mistake. The ride is wonderful, engine/trans smooth and I will probably keep this car until my wife threatens divorce for sake of a newer model. Best car I've owned.
Overall great Car! I had to replace the tensioner pulley housing along with new belt. Parts are EXPENSIVE...but with regulary scheduled maintenance and oil'll last forever!
We got this car a few months ago. It only had 75k on it. We LOVE it. one of the best riding and powerful cars we have owned. I have had 7 series BMW's in the past and this is better. Would highly recomend it to anyone
You should not be afraid of buying one IF you are armed with knowing what to lookout for. Timing belt+water pump replacement history is a must . Maintenence records are crucial ..
Best car I ever owned, and I still do. Minor problems only. I learned the hard way that the Lexus dealer repair process never "repairs" anything: their franchise agreement with Lexus requires them to replace any part not working properly - they can't even clean spark plugs, they must install new. Once I took that into account, I became a DIY repair, bought the shop manuals (for about $180) and if I can't do it myself, only then do I seek assistance.
Best car I ever owned - and I've had Mercedes (450SL), Cadillacs, Volvo (Bertone) and Lincolns. Not one of them could touch my Lexus (not even close).
This is one of the finest luxury cars with the extended life with the minimum repairs as long as regular maintainence is performed. Simple oil changes and tire rotations will give you a reliable luxuty automobile
Jerry Olsen
Best car I've had in 50 yrs. Have replaced power steering, and front struts. Some tranny work. Otherwise 190,000 miles of comfort driving. Body paint and interior like new. They'll sell this car the day after they bury me.
I've just been given this car from my uncle and am really greatful for it. It's a wonderful and bad ass car, only thing is that when he signed it over, the lights on the stereo already went out so at night I can't see the radio plus he got the gold package, yet, didn't opt. for the CD changer so I can't listen to any CD unless I replace the stereo.
Also, some how the driver side mirror's automatice tint got damaged and 1/4 of the area won't tint anymore and it'll cost $380 to just replace the mirror. Not the whole housing, just he mirror.