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Best bang for the buck. Toyota reliability and comfort!!! by ToyotaHead-Lee on 09/15/2011. Trim: 2003 Lexus IS 300 5-Speed Sedan, Owned less than 1 year.
Pros: Styling is awesome, from the flushed aggressive looking headlights to the tail lights, this car turns heads everywhere I take it. Extremely rare to find a 5spd SPORT DESIGN. The engine purrs and rarely no engine noise when on the highway. It is really a blast to drive and sticks to corners great. Get the 5spd if you can find one. Interior leather is comfortable and strongly recommended vs the suede/leather combo as the suede gets dirty and eventually wears down causing it to peel or unstitch. Gauge cluster design looks good. All interior controls are within easy reach and basic. Sound system is better than average for its time. Seats 4 adults and one child comfortably. Strongly recommend!!!!
Cons: Some minor things such as the rear seats should be able to fold down vs. having the little pop out for skis in the rear seats. Would be nice to have heated/cooled seats. Engine is peppy, but could use more horsepower for its class at the time (at least 280+). Sound system could use a boost (JBL/BOSE/PIONEER) from the factory like how the top model Celica's came w/ JBL system. Gas mileage could be better (for any car)
Overall review: I stepped out of a 1995 Supra (NA) for my IS300. Though they share the same engine, the IS300 engine was a newer revised engine w/ VVTi. My family and I are Toyota heads and we drive nothing but Toyotas. This car is the first Lexus (still heart of Toyota) in the family and everyone loves it. My wife loves it the most because its a big change from her 2006 4Runner. My dad likes it because it its a 5spd and a 4 door sedan, to where he can drive it hard and get groceries w/ it. Both my brothers drive turbo'ed Toyotas (Celica All-Trac and MR2) and they rather take the IS300 for reliability and comfort. For me, I like everything about it. I searched for almost 2 years to find the "Perfect" IS300 for me and now I have. The car is a rare find in a 5spd Sport Design in black. I'm going to drive this car until it can go no more......which will be forever. If you're having doubts, go test drive one, or ask your friends/family who owns one. They'll recommend you get one as well...in a 5spd. Thx
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