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Hi everyone. I’ve seen one available on FB marketplace for £2,995,being sold by and elderly gentleman whom has owned the vehicle for 23 years. It is a 1995 model with 144k on odometer. REG: M718WHE. It is black with grey interior. Looks clean. Drivers seat belt is fraying but that’s a simple fix. Provided with service history and MOT states to monitor oil leak, corrosion under vehicle and front and rear discs are not severely weakened. The gentleman said cambelt was changed and the ball joints were replaced two years ago (around 3,000 mines ago). Has also had the starter motor replaced. 
 

Anything specific to look out for with these models? I’m not very mechanical by nature but it appears clean. 
 

thanks

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Hi

Here are a few pointers:

  1. When test driving make sure the gear changes smooth and no clunks from the suspension - generally engine and gearbox are bullet proof on these
  2. Check all the electrics work - the cd player back lights tend to pack up and the heated seats almost always don't work and there is no fix for them
  3. The early mark 3 cars which is this one suffered from stalling when slowing down from speed i.e when coming off a motorway - this was due to dirty throttle body - try to ensure this is not the case.
  4. Check for low or eratic idle when warm - this could indicate
  5. Check the boot is all dry - if not you will need a new boot seal
  6. If you can get a new MOT on in before purchase this would be good - any rust issues could be found at this point
  7. Check for exhaust blow from the Y section - the part disintegrates causing the blow - the only cost effective solution is to get this part fabricated - the rest of the exhaust is stainless steel.
  8. As you open the bonnet just behind the bumper you will see the power steering cooling pipe - make sure this is not corroded or leaking
  9. Make sure the air con works
  10. Make sure you have at least 2 keys and the remote central locking work - and ensure all doors lock and unlock
  11. Make sure the rear demister works.
  12. Make sure you get Alloy wheel key.
  13. Ask if the cabin filter has ever been changed - these get overlooked.
  14. Make sure the CD player in the glovebox works - these sometimes pack up.
  15. Have a good look around the rear aches for rust - they are dirt traps
  16. Make sure all the dash needles light up fully.

I've seen the car - leather looks like it has never had treatment - otherwise its quite smart - its top end price for a mark 3 car. But its a quality car.

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13 minutes ago, cruisermark said:

Hi

Here are a few pointers:

  1. When test driving make sure the gear changes smooth and no clunks from the suspension - generally engine and gearbox are bullet proof on these
  2. Check all the electrics work - the cd player back lights tend to pack up and the heated seats almost always don't work and there is no fix for them
  3. The early mark 3 cars which is this one suffered from stalling when slowing down from speed i.e when coming off a motorway - this was due to dirty throttle body - try to ensure this is not the case.
  4. Check for low or eratic idle when warm - this could indicate ECU capacitors need replacing
  5. Check the boot is all dry - if not you will need a new boot seal
  6. If you can get a new MOT on in before purchase this would be good - any rust ans suspension issues could be found at this point
  7. Check for exhaust blow from the Y section - the part disintegrates causing the blow - the only cost effective solution is to get this part fabricated - the rest of the exhaust is stainless steel.
  8. As you open the bonnet just behind the bumper you will see the power steering cooling pipe - make sure this is not corroded or leaking
  9. Make sure the air con works
  10. Make sure you have at least 2 keys and the remote central locking work - and ensure all doors lock and unlock
  11. Make sure the rear demister works.
  12. Make sure you get Alloy wheel key.
  13. Ask if the cabin filter has ever been changed - these get overlooked.
  14. Make sure the CD player in the glovebox works - these sometimes pack up.
  15. Have a good look around the rear aches for rust - they are dirt traps
  16. Make sure all the dash needles light up fully.

I've seen the car - leather looks like it has never had treatment - otherwise its quite smart - its top end price for a mark 3 car. But its a quality car.

 

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I looked at that car as well, I think it's the same colour as the Mk3 Gold Badge Edition I had in 'Ebony Teal Pearl' paint code 6N9, it's a very dark green and looks metallic black until you look really close or the sun shines on it. Or it might just be metallic Black. Looking at one of the pictures, from the front on the drive, the passenger wing and mirror looks dull but that may be just the light and shadows.

Apart from the excellent list by 'cruisermark', starter, cambelt and ball joints replaced is a bonus. Rust is the main enemy in my opinion, the issues on mine are well documented on here so that is where I would start before doing any thing else. Lift the left and right boot flaps and have a look for any signs of water or rust/holes, this is where the water and grit will be if there are holes into the boot from the lower rear arches. If there are signs of this then the chances are the other side of the rear arches may have the same issue.

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Alexander ........... if it doesn't have separate fog lights it's a Mk3 ( they're within the main headlamp lenses ) ....  unless it's an import then the front light cluster may be different ....  whatever

Malc

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just checked the MOT stuff ......December 1995 car would be a Mk3 .......  mine's October 1995 and a Mk3 ............  it's on the owners private plate then being " M " reg ?!?

Malc

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I find it useful to know the build date, which in my case was 8 months before being registered.  Lexus should be able to tell you.

2 hours ago, cruisermark said:

the cd player back lights tend to pack up

As does the Climate Control display.

The bonnet struts fail, but they are straightforward to replace and not expensive, unless you buy them from Lexus!

The immobiliser/alarm can play up. It was not factory fitted but an aftermarket one, possibly Scorpion, fitted at the UK dealership.

3 hours ago, Alexander-Lexus said:

cambelt was changed

Hopefully along with the water pump, idlers, tensioner and coolant.

2 hours ago, cruisermark said:

Make sure all the dash needles light up fully.

And that the fuel and temperature gauges work correctly and consistently. If not, the cause is apparently due to failing/failed electrolytic capacitors on the circuit board.

Don't be put off by all the above caveats. You would have to be really unlucky to have all these issues on one car! They are just the result of experiences of various owners over the years.

It might be worth reading some of the buying guides here, if you haven't already:

 

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Thanks all. 

I saw said vehicle today; it wasn’t in the best condition; looks like there has been front damage, under the headlight there was a gap and side panel was a different colour. Leather wasn’t in best condition - I didn’t give it anymore time. Not for me, I’d rather pay more money for a clean example. 

It is extremely difficult to find one in good condition; likely that most owners know their worth and won’t sell them. 
 

I remember seeing a green one on Auto Trader for £5,000 which was in good condition, it has gone now but I feel my budget will need to be higher than 2-3k if I want a nice one with reasonable mileage and maintenance etc. 
 

I shall continue with my hunting! 

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5 hours ago, Razor61 said:

It’s worth contacting the one in the link above which I posted earlier, I think you may be interested😉 It’s described as having no rust and I don’t doubt it at all after seeing some pictures of the work that has been done, it may put you off but if all the work has been done properly then it should be fine.

I was tempted myself and to be honest I still am but I have already promised the Mrs that I wouldn’t get another LS400. If I had somewhere to store the car it would be different and would maybe just buy it, store it and suffer the consequences😚

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The white one for £1,500 on auto trader has been sold. I looked earlier today there was nothing, looked around 16:00 and they’ve just got back to me saying it’s been sold. 

There is also one on Gumtree 1999 reg with history and timing belt changed. £2,750 but has 180k - wants a quick sale but ideally I would prefer less mileage. 

I have looked at the one you posted, if I remember correctly it’s in Birmingham and the guy wanted £4,000 but was open to offers.
 

I’ve contacted the company whom I bought my GS300 from and the guy said he has a LS400 coming in with low mileage, he will need to replace water pump and cambelt etc but would let me know when it arrives and how much it will be, you it is 1997 reg and has 30,000; full service history up to 2014; I expect he will want a pretty penny for it. 
 

I think I’ll wait until I hear from this and if not maybe look at the one that has had the rust treatment. 

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Prices are on the up! Modern classics now!

IIRC There are 4 series of LS400 and 2 marks

Mark 1 Series I 1989-1992 UCF-10

Mark 1 Series II 1993-1994 UCF-10

Mark 2 Series III 1995-1997 UCF-20

Mark 2 Series IV 1998-2000 ( there are a few late 1997 models about) VVTI

CF37CE04-C1F5-4B43-9582-B68E26467DD8.jpeg

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2 minutes ago, Alexander-Lexus said:

1997 reg and has 30,000;

That is low mileage but as you say it may be expensive. The one in Birmingham has had a new rear quarter, the inner wing rust cut out as well and new metal welded in plus other work as well and all documented with photos I’m told.

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MK1 and Mk2 may be worth money in the future but let’s be honest, whose going to want one with 150k + that has been parked outside for 20 years or has a LPG kit / modifications attached; they are the majority that I see for sale! 
 

The real niche ones that have been jacked up and kept in a garage for years might be worth a pretty penny in the future but how many of them are around? I see that one for £10k online which has been there for months; not sure if there has been any interest this far but price hasn’t changed... 

I think Lexus has a very niche following here in the UK, especially the LS400. It would take a brave person to speculatively invest £10k into that! 

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Looks like you’re interested in that yourself buddy! I’m always somewhat skeptical when somebody who buys a car like that and sells it on after 2 months later - he bought it off FB in November had some servicing work done and the rust treatment etc and now wants close to £4K... I mean it could be legitimate sale with that being said, it could be legitimate; I think I’ll message him. 
 

The one the gentleman has in store with 30,000 in Northern Ireland is likely to cost a lot and would probably be more of an investment for somebody wanting on in the future rather than something you’d use for a daily! 

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Has anybody looked at this Gold one in Hemel Hempstead? £3,000 and has 109,000. Looks clean inside. The MOT history states there’s some major defects in Feb 2020, looks like these were fixed, nothing reported in December 2020; likely a trade in, wonder if they cleaned up any issues or just masked them other with a ‘false’ MOT? Any thoughts? - this is the link; https://www.autotrader.co.uk/car-details/202009163803604?advertising-location=at_cars&is-quick-search=TRUE&postcode=B976SG&model=LS 400&page=1&make=LEXUS&include-delivery-option=on&onesearchad=Used&onesearchad=Nearly New&onesearchad=New&advertClassification=standard

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I would leave alone any car that has sat for a long time as cars need to be run and seals, hoses etc. break down after time.

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1 hour ago, shanra said:

as cars need to be run and seals, hoses etc. break down after time.

and in my case a few little electrical gremlins that have yet to be fettled by somebody really really competent:unsure:

Malc

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they do scrub up well BUT no one's bothered to clear the leaves from under the bonnet ....  that's the degree of care the present owner gives to it !]

Malc

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12 hours ago, Alexander-Lexus said:

Looks like you’re interested in that yourself buddy!

I presume you mean me🙂 yes I am interested but my head is ruling my heart at the moment. After my LS400 was written off 4/5 months ago I said I wouldn't get another, been there, spent money, done loads of work etc and didn't fancy doing it all again......................but I can't help looking at LS400's for sale and thinking about buying another. I have a 2010 IS250 now (Mrs has an IS200) and I'm very please with it, smooth and quiet, but it's not as smooth and quiet as an LS400. It's not that far off though to be fair. If I had somewhere dry to store an LS400 it would be different but I don't so head wins. I could rent a newly built unit, nice and dry with power etc but it's £100 per month.

Anyway I may have a drive down to Birmingham next weekend and have a look at the car to see if it's as good as described.

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