Do Not Sell My Personal Information Jump to content


Black IS250 F Sport Basic Mods and Tweaks d


Recommended Posts

Hi guys, thought I'd make a dedicated thread to my ownership of the IS250 as its my 2nd car and first Lexus and I'm absolutely loving it so far! I picked her up as a high mileage example for just under £4500 around Christmas 2020 and I knew there may be some work needed but it was the exact spec I wanted (F Sport 2010 with the memory seats as well as the Mark Levinson Audio).

Plans with the vehicle were to add apple Carplay into the unit via a GROM VLine, do a few creature comfort upgrades to the interiors and update the look slightly by changing the tail lights and headlights to VLANDs or Facelift DRL headlights depending what I can get. 

IMG_1615.thumb.JPG.8e145a054e949a125a8ded570cfb07aa.JPGIMG_1014.thumb.JPG.a89bfc5eb3bb477ef0049403c3e35ada.JPG

Unfortunately within 10 days of owning the vehicle, I very annoyingly had a minor accident with it! Thankfully the insurance company managed to fix it and the car wasn't written off and I was back on the road by early Feb. 

IMG_1242D.thumb.JPG.2f993f8bc892188c899111d3e9b01600.JPGIMG_1243D.thumb.JPG.3d0fd4047073cf253455b6d994f36fd6.JPG

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

After getting the car back from the garage, my first major mod was getting the Grom VLINE working. Being a massive technology nerd, apple Carplay was something I almost certainly wanted to have in my vehicle and the GROM Vline seemed to be the best way of going about it as it keeps the interior OEM and retains proper climate controls. Chinese android head units are an option but I do not know if they're fully compatible and theres a good chance they'd degrade the sound quality of the Mark Levinson audio and as a musician / audiophile the sound quality was a major thing for me.

Unfortunately due to the facelift version AISIN units not being fully compatible, we couldn't get it to work 100%. The long story short of it is that you can access the  GROM interface but you cannot use it as the touch screen will freeze up and it requires a workaround with accessing the reverse gear to get into it.

IMG_1704D.thumb.JPG.e69de1534d8701f032fe79cba72d2680.JPGIMG_1720.thumb.JPG.bb4b8726053fb9f3c381a9ddb400010c.JPG

After a major back and forth with GROM support for many weeks, I decided to throw in the towel. The good news in it is provisionally possible to get the GROM working but I'd rather not be a guniea pig with a £500 paper weight. I am in touch with people on a GROM VLINE support facebook group and when the GROM is eventually compatible with my car via a software update I plan on getting it once more! 

https://www.facebook.com/groups/696386090967018/

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

One of the first mods I wanted to do to the car was definitely changing all the interior lighting to LED and to put a boot liner down. I managed to pick one up on ebay for fairly cheap and the quality seems great even though its not OEM, I do plan to make some cut outs to allow for the foldable hooks to be used without having to lift the liner. 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Lexus-Is250-Is220-2005-2013-On-Tailored-3MM-Rubber-Heavy-Duty-Car-Boot-Mat/362207666616?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

IMG_2181D.thumb.JPG.1ef76fd97bb9b0f78d02788f1c9db76e.JPG

Bought a set of the standard LED light kits on ebay, was a bit fiddly to install but with a trim removal kit from amazon I managed to persevere. All of the bulbs seem to work great, I may have inadvertently scammed the ebay seller as I told him one of the bulbs wasnt working but turns out it was a fuse that was damaged once I replaced all the lights worked wonderfully, I only realised this after he had sent me out two replacement bulbs, oops!

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Lexus-IS250-LED-INTERIOR-KIT-INTERIOR-LIGHTS-BULBS-LED-KIT/260863230811?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

IMG_2189.JPGIMG_2190.JPGIMG_2236.thumb.JPG.2af6804126b9ef3861c1ef95a44b6034.JPG

One thing I've seen quite common is how pitifully bright the boot light is even with an upgraded LED. Some people have suggesting using an LED strip instead but I never liked the look of this. After poking around the US owners club forum, I noticed one guy buy a multi LED Panel and wired that into the existing connector via an adapter and that produced a much more powerful and impressive light in the boot.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/T10-5050-24SMD-LED-Panel-Car-Interior-White-Light-Festoon-Dome-Lamp-Blub-UK/402552696370?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

IMG_2185D.JPGIMG_2187D.JPG

This was the product I bought, the install was fairly easy although I managed to trip the Dome light fuses TWICE while installing so keep some spare 10amp fuses handy incase you do that. The install without tripping fuses was fairly easy, the bulb is telescopic so you should be able to fit it into the existing housing by giving it a squeeze. The LED panel has an adhesive backing so I stuck this to the bottom of the existing cover to allow for the maximum light output. The cabling will have clearance to go the hole so you shouldnt have many issues installing. 

I didn't take a before shot unfortunately but some of these shots were taken around 9pm but these should hopefully illustrate how bright they are and if anyone else who wants to improve their lighting. Hope anyone else finds the boot LED mod useful! 

Link to post
Share on other sites

A few weeks back I took my vehicle for an airbag recall to Lexus Nottingham, they gave me a nice CT200H for the day and went about the work. The experience I had with them was excellent and they did a health check for me as well as putting in half a tank of fuel for the inconvenience.

image.png.6c9adba76d39c7883ffaaf6bd7d46edd.pngIMG_1935.thumb.jpg.94a9f3f48a6ef04b7d4e66db15569f74.jpgIMG_1936.thumb.jpg.d0d38cc75112a3d88a6bfcac3ceaa8fc.jpg

They did indicate to me the front tyres seem rather low and that there was some work that needing doing to the vehicle. These were things I was somewhat aware of when purchasing the vehicle but after making a previous post on it I was assured a lot of it wasn't anything major although to which I will link below as well as the health check video LEXUS provided me. 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I noticed a few days after the health check the ride quality was drastically worse compared to when I first got the car, it turns out the driver side front tyre was damaged and eventually went flat. I took this opportunity to treat the car to a new set of Continental Eco Contact 6's all around. Managed to get 4 tyres and a wheel alignment done down the road via Asda Tyres and I used a discount code to get £50 so all in all it was around £420. Not something I wanted to do quite so early into owning the car, but I have to say the ride quality has improved dramatically.

IMG_2252.thumb.jpg.eddda0b21aa84f7badebdec2001647a9.jpgIMG_2254.thumb.jpg.5167c7bd35e091c2d62d368042461185.jpgIMG_2253.thumb.jpg.ce626ec4f35acf9f38c31b9bc1eb8256.jpg

The exact tyres I ended up with were the following.

FRONT: x2

 

Continental EcoContact 6 225/40R18 92Y XL

 

REAR: x2

 

Continental EcoContact 6 245/40R18 97Y XL MO

 

I did notice with my car the fronts were 225 40 R18 and the rears were 255 40 R18, when shopping around I noticed how astronomically priced the 255's were compared to the 225!

Thankfully there were quite a few tyre recommendation threads on the main forum and I noticed a member suggesting 245s instead of the 255s and they were thankfully a very similar price to the 225s.

At some point I'll get around to refurbing the alloys

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Bilal. Wow you've been busy with all those posts posted at the same time. Bad luck with the prang and damage but glad it's sorted. I'm intrigued by you wanting the grom vline thing. To me it's got far too many negative reviews. I'm not informed about apple car play. Is it a form of Bluetooth music streaming? If so save about £480 and get a Bluetooth adapter plugged into the aux socket in the armrest cubby hole. I have that and my ML sounds outstanding. Hopefully below is my install 

 

20210304_094413.jpg

 

Note I've used a 90 degree cigarette socket adapter and a 2v cigarette power socket but a shallow one. Simple effective and out of the way. 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Mr Vlad said:

Hi Bilal. Wow you've been busy with all those posts posted at the same time. Bad luck with the prang and damage but glad it's sorted. I'm intrigued by you wanting the grom vline thing. To me it's got far too many negative reviews. I'm not informed about apple car play. Is it a form of Bluetooth music streaming? If so save about £480 and get a Bluetooth adapter plugged into the aux socket in the armrest cubby hole. I have that and my ML sounds outstanding. Hopefully below is my install 

 

20210304_094413.jpg

 

Note I've used a 90 degree cigarette socket adapter and a 2v cigarette power socket but a shallow one. Simple effective and out of the way. 

Many thanks for the kind words Vlad, the funny thing is with the facelift 2009+ onwards you do get Bluetooth music and iPod / Iphone connectivity via usb which is extremely handy. And you are right even via Bluetooth the quality I’m getting is absolutely superb, definitely the best sounding car audio I’ve heard so far In a vehicle stock and that’s from a musicians perspective. 

The idea of apple carplay is that the contents of your phone be that your music streaming, satellite navigation; phone calls and text messages are all populated on your infotainment in an intuitive discreet way which makes it quite safe while driving. I had it in my old corsa via a cheap double din unit and it was extremely handy and it’s hard to go back to not having it. Android auto would be the android equivalent of this and the GROM only appealed to me as you could achieve wireless apple carplay while retaining the audio quality and still keep things pretty much stock. The other solutions on the market do not provide this without other caveats.

Yes to be honest many people do have issues with the GROM but most of them are issues mainly with running android apps whereas my only concern was Carplay. And it’s a shame because when it did work it worked beautifully. To give you an idea there’s a YouTube video on a fellow Lexus owner from New Zealand who did show an excellent review of carplay in the IS gen 2.

 

C37B7F8E-0FBD-449C-9DBF-00563D8FC1EB.jpeg.904f8111f916c2e24ac4dfa898195e5a.jpeg

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've seen that video a while back Bilal. Have you not considered the Vaistech module. It looks more reliable than the grom and is cheaper. Sorry I forget the actual model but Google Vaistech and you'll see what I mean.

Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, Mr Vlad said:

Hi Bilal. Wow you've been busy with all those posts posted at the same time. Bad luck with the prang and damage but glad it's sorted. I'm intrigued by you wanting the grom vline thing. To me it's got far too many negative reviews. I'm not informed about apple car play. Is it a form of Bluetooth music streaming? If so save about £480 and get a Bluetooth adapter plugged into the aux socket in the armrest cubby hole. I have that and my ML sounds outstanding. Hopefully below is my install 

 

20210304_094413.jpg

 

Note I've used a 90 degree cigarette socket adapter and a 2v cigarette power socket but a shallow one. Simple effective and out of the way. 

@Mr Vlad what iS this Bluetooth usb plug in ?? As I was going to get the Gromaudio once they fixed the tel option and had positive results but this looks so cheap and quick .

Link to post
Share on other sites

so after reading this I went to Poundland and bought 1.

the problem is the quality is good but you can’t control from the steering wheel. The usb works exactly the same just no cables doing it your way with the usb to aux. The main problem I have is the stereo sound is so low. You have to have it up full blast to 55-58 to really hear it. Compared to the normal stereo and radio the sound you only have to turn up half to 30. 

image.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

so after reading this I went to Poundland and bought 1.

the problem is the quality is good but you can’t control from the steering wheel. The usb works exactly the same just no cables doing it your way with the usb to aux. The main problem I have is the stereo sound is so low. You have to have it up full blast to 55-58 to really hear it. Compared to the normal stereo and radio the sound you only have to turn up half to 30. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Link to post
Share on other sites

@Mr Vlad does it make a difference going from  cigarette adapter to usb lead into aux port ?? I only need to get the usb to aux port . As you can see I have 2 Iphone charges and one lead for port so just need the adaptor . I will order from eBay 
 

image.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

I see you've already got the AUX socket in use But I notice you have a USB socket and an AUX socket. USB must have been added to updated models. Ok so the Red lead is plugged into the USB socket and a Black wire into the AUX socket. 

My Bluetooth adapter needs power. That comes from the cigarette socket with a shallow power adapter and a 90 degree bend adapter (otherwise the lid won't shut). The shallow power adapter has 2 USB sockets within so the thing is you'll have to sacrifice the Black lead which am I right to assume is a wire to your phone?

Link to post
Share on other sites

I see you don’t have a usb in aux like my model, I understand now. So what I’ve been doing is fine I didn’t need that extra wire I bought today.

the sound is still so low  which is so annoying.  I don’t understand why when it comes through Spotify on my Iphone . The sound quality is so different to radio and cd 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok. So you say the sound is so low. I take it you mean volume. What volume setting on your phone do you use? I have my Samsung on max and radio on 30. 30 is quite loud. Mind you depends on what you're listening to. Spotify I find is quite varied in volume even with the settings set to maintain the same volume between different tracks. 

Also I must add you have ML But my experience tells me there are different ways ML systems play music. My experience is I've had 2 is300h premium Premier with ML. Both 2014 cars and exactly the same colour spec etc etc. However the 1st one the ML was rubbish and the suspension was really hard. My 2nd one was perfect. ML was superb and suspension great. So even though Lexus puts ML in cars it doesn't mean it'll be a good system. It's unfortunate but since my is300h cars I've test driven my other Lexus cars over potholes etc and the ML System. I've rejected 2 RX450H cars before settling for the 3rd one I saw. Just food for thought. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Mr Vlad said:

Ok. So you say the sound is so low. I take it you mean volume. What volume setting on your phone do you use? I have my Samsung on max and radio on 30. 30 is quite loud. Mind you depends on what you're listening to. Spotify I find is quite varied in volume even with the settings set to maintain the same volume between different tracks. 

I've got a Belkin Bluetooth transmitter ( cigi plug for power and then straight into Aux ) Then i have to press a button on the receiver and my phone is auto connected to it. Bluetooth music & calls work. But yea, the volume.. I have my phone on max volume and then just adjust the volume of the car. It's loud with both on full. I don't have any issues with it. I just wish the phone connected to it straight away after starting the car.. I have to either press a button on the Bluetooth module or go into settings in me phone which takes longer. Oh and I'm using an Iphone and apple Music.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well it goes to show the myriad of different Bluetooth adapters. My adapter connects immediately after ignition is turned on.

Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, Mr Vlad said:

Well it goes to show the myriad of different Bluetooth adapters. My adapter connects immediately after ignition is turned on.

Are you on Android or iOS? I wonder if that's something to do with it. iPhones are a bit funny about connecting to random things automatically.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

For anyone wanting to spend 30 minutes to install an adaptor into the back of the stereo I can't recommend this enough. It plugs in a spare cd magazine slot in the back of the stereo and allows you to use your steering controls too. only thing is that you have to be careful when removing the stereo not to damage the dashboard near the top air vent. 

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07JN9MD28/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

there are more details on this in the thread below

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 4/7/2021 at 8:17 AM, zoricib said:

For anyone wanting to spend 30 minutes to install an adaptor into the back of the stereo I can't recommend this enough. It plugs in a spare cd magazine slot in the back of the stereo and allows you to use your steering controls too. only thing is that you have to be careful when removing the stereo not to damage the dashboard near the top air vent. 

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07JN9MD28/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

there are more details on this in the thread below

 

Nice suggestion there,  my 2010 came with Bluetooth as standard but for anyone pre 2009 this should work nicely. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 5 weeks later...

Been a while since an update, have been busy doing some DIY projects around the house and I managed to get an absolute bargain for an IS250C for my mum, I'll be making some posts about that in the coming days.  After a few months of silence, GROM contacted me advising they had fixed the issues I had with the unit previously. I honestly wasn't expecting to hear back, but thanks to their proactiveness I bit the bullet purchasing the VLINE2 again (Was more comfortable knowing I could get all my money back via Paypal in any case) and while it did work more so than before, there were still some issues.

After a few weeks of liaising with the GROM customer support, they pushed out an update for me that has made the unit almost 100% usable. There are a few quirks but Wireless apple CarPlay working reliably for me outweighs any small issues I'm currently having and it works like a dream. I made a short video demonstrating the usage of this and can recommend the unit to anyone with a facelift IS like myself craving a modern infotainment. It is not at all cheap whatsoever so do try and get it on a group buy to save some extra pennies !

F1986E87-3F96-47A7-8F3F-CA2B746963D9.thumb.jpg.0c56fe11785fba726993379d1e9f8258.jpg!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...




Forums


News


Membership