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Hi All,

Sorry if this is covered somewhere,

I'm looking to replace my ageing BMW 330D and an ISF has been on my radar for a looooong time so want to get some info from those in the know to present to SWMBO, the main reason for the change is the cost of the up keep on the BMW has started to increase quite rapidly, a couple of grand in the last 12 months which is mainly down to the age of the car and I know there is other stuff that needs doing, how are the older ISFs holding up (I know about water pumps and the radiator issue)?

It'll be used daily, I have a 10mile round commute to work, across 30,40 and 50 zones, and we usually have couple of longer journeys each month (80 - 100 miles), motorways and A roads usually and I tend to cruise rather then "hoon" which suites the BMW  perfectly (low down torque and auto box), although it can and will shift if needed...probably averaging 320 - 350 on a tank "around the doors".

Am I right that the back seats don't fold down?

Anything else to be aware of, heavy on tyres, servicing costs, can you still get a Lexus warranty for the older cars?

TIA

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Hi

You are correct the back seats don't fold, there is a ski hatch in between the rear seats which is useful. The boot is a good size. It is not a SUV though.😀

Main Dealer servicing is expensive - £720 for full service inc brake fluid etc, £375 for oil & filter plus the usual checks.

Extended Warranty can be had if the car is under 10yrs old and is subject to a inspection by a Main Dealer - better to find a car that already got it.

I would say go for a 2010+ car if you budget will allow. 

Only options are mesh wheels and rare sunroof. 

In the US there are cars with in excess of 200k miles, so reliability on well maintained cars is good as anything out there.

Keep an eye on autotrader, ebay and here for cars for sale

Good luck 

 

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Independent servicing is cheap enough. It's good if you can get one with the radiator/ transcooler done as well as a none leaking water pump. Discs and pads aren't too bad if you don't go to the dealer either. Wear on tyres is good for what it is.

Personally don't see the point in the 4+ extra thousand for a facelift, would rather put that towards something else. But I would say that, my 58 plate car went up for sale on here yesterday 😂

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If you can, check under the car for rust, especially under the hundreds of plastic pieces of trim. They're great for aerodynamics and also trapping water! The cars stop rust well and there are no 'known' areas of rust to look for, but the trays and plastics hide a lot, so it's always worth it. I had mine checked and then rust treated and protected.

Look for sticky/cracked interior plastics like dash and door cards. An American recall issue which hasn't presented itself here, but always worth noting along with the valley plate leak (check under engine cover).

Ticking on start up can be cracked manifolds/headers. These are a weak point and crack, even on the best looked after cars. It's roughly a 10 hour job to replace and always worth considering an upgrade to PPE headers to get away from the OEM design/quality. A lot of people live with the cracks and the cars still run fine, but again, worth noting.

Check for the bumpers sagging under the lights, both front and rear. The clips are weak and tend to go if the bumper has been removed a few times.

These are a few things I looked for when searching as well as all the usual issues.

I bought mine over 2 months ago and I love it. Best car I've owned and driving her, even to the shops, is a joy. It's a lovely place to be inside and the car has aged well and will continue to in my eyes due to the design. I can't see me changing for a long time.

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boring question alert!

 

What MPG are you seeing and type of driving is that?  I know you don't buy these cars for their economy but it's still something to consider, I understand something like an S4 (09-13) will return low 20's day to day for example.

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49 minutes ago, Martyn76 said:

boring question alert!

 

What MPG are you seeing and type of driving is that?  I know you don't buy these cars for their economy but it's still something to consider, I understand something like an S4 (09-13) will return low 20's day to day for example.

Well I drove to the coast and back on a mixture of roads which was an hour and half each way and I averaged 29.4mpg. Driving the car back from Scotland with some fun thrown in was 31mpg. Around town has been mid 20's.

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I get slightly less than my previous S5 day to day (23mpg) but on a run its capable of slightly more than the S5 (30mpg). 

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From my experience with my ISF. MPG is very dependant on the temperature outside, how quickly the car gets up to temp as this influences when the torque converter locks up via the mapping parameters, and of course the speed. From cold the torque converter locks from 50mph onwards in 8th so the quicker you get there the better in terms of MPG, as a tip, set the cruise to 51mph, that guarantees it stays locked under steady roads, any incline it will unlock again due to load changes. As it warms up, it locks from 20-30mph depending on load etc.

As a motorway mpg test, in snow mode from motorway on ramp to motorway off-ramp mine got over 40mpg sat at 70 on a relativily flat piece of motorway with some down hill. From the Midlands to York I averaged 33mpg with some blasts and sat in some traffic. From cold on a 6 mile journey with a mixture of 30-60mph roads I get 23-26mpg in winter, 27-33 in summer, traffic dependant. 

I've attached some images as proof.

On a run they're witchcraft good on fuel. But also funny to watch the needle move on a hoon.

All engines are the same in this regard, a bigger engine just makes the trends easier to see.

Wait for the right one to pop up and get it. You won't be disappointed 😈

20210521_150557.jpg

20210521_150622.jpg

20210521_150713.jpg

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I used my ISF as my daily for 2 1/2 years, and 27k miles ish.

Used to do a bi-weekly trip to Leeds from Newcastle, keeping up with the traffic 70-80mph over 30mpg was easily achieved.

used to go to Inverness probably every 6 weeks, longer run, slower average speed saw up to 35mpg regularly.

on the school run, 2 miles there and back was in late teens mpg.

mine was a 2011 facelift - utterly reliable, apart from regular servicing, it had a set of brakes and a wiper blades
cracking cars. But due to their age now buy condition and history- not colour, age or spec.

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The newer versions had updated: steering ECU, suspension; Torsen LSD, Daytime running lights, Bluetooth streaming, updated water pump, updated instrument cluster.

You can tell its a newer version by looking at the steering wheel, if it has a blue bottom then its 2010+ with LSD.

Tyres - look for inner wear. A common issue on all variants. Easily fixed by Figs/RR Racing parts.
Brakes - Lexus will charge you an arm and a leg for each axle. Go to Euro Car Parts, brembo OEM brakes and pads - get them fitted at an indie!
Warranty - if you go for a newer version, even if it doesn't have full Lexus Service History, they will accept it after a check. But, all servicing must be done at Lexus thereafter. IMO it's worth it, £850 or so for 2 years. Had a bit of condensation in my headlights, they covered both lights - parts and labour, easily paid for the warranty.

Other than the advise you've already got, there's not much that goes wrong with these cars.

Good luck!

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I’ve had mine for over six years now, I know Scott’s car well as the previous owner is a friend, it’s a very well looked after car, personally I never opted for the extended warranty and I’m quids in for doing so, only costs I’ve had are servicing, tyres and I had the rad changed as a precautionary measure, the Valley plate is an American issue mainly due to heat and the same for dash n door cards, a lot is how your going to drive it, if u opt to track regularly then u need to expect associated issues, nothing will last forever if it’s abused, personally I’d be looking for a car that’s known with history with EITHER main dealer and a specialist Indy (Indy is my personal preference)........as said above manifolds can be an issue and 10hrs to change, Indy £600 main-dealer double.......and manifolds upwards of £1600.....good luck with your quest it’ll knock spots off ze Germans 

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Just now, Womble72 said:

I’ve had mine for over six years now, I know Scott’s car well as the previous owner is a friend, it’s a very well looked after car, personally I never opted for the extended warranty and I’m quids in for doing so, only costs I’ve had are servicing, tyres and I had the rad changed as a precautionary measure, the Valley plate is an American issue mainly due to heat and the same for dash n door cards, a lot is how your going to drive it, if u opt to track regularly then u need to expect associated issues, nothing will last forever if it’s abused, personally I’d be looking for a car that’s known with history with EITHER main dealer and a specialist Indy (Indy is my personal preference)........as said above manifolds can be an issue and 10hrs to change, Indy £600 main-dealer double.......and manifolds upwards of £1600.....good luck with your quest it’ll knock spots off ze Germans 

Fuel costs 24 daily, 35 on a run @ 70ish.

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2 hours ago, Womble72 said:

as said above manifolds can be an issue and 10hrs to change, Indy £600 main-dealer double.......and manifolds upwards of £1600.....good luck with your quest it’ll knock spots off ze Germans 

Sorry to bother you. Was it you who replaced it with gsf manifold? 
 

barry

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1 minute ago, Cactus said:

Sorry to bother you. Was it you who replaced it with gsf manifold? 
 

barry

No bother Barry, yes it was

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3 minutes ago, Womble72 said:

No bother Barry, yes it was

Thanks! 

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What tyres are people running, my BMW has a staggered setup (although only 18s), anyone bother running all season or winter tyres at all, I have a set for my BMW and wouldn't be without them between Nov and March.

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Had a mooch online, are these tyre sizes right, front coming out more expensive than rears, which is different!

Front 225/40 /19 Y 93

Rear 225/35 /19 Y 93

The rears are a lower profile than the front, not sure if I'm reading that right...

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54 minutes ago, Martyn76 said:

Had a mooch online, are these tyre sizes right, front coming out more expensive than rears, which is different!

Front 225/40 /19 Y 93

Rear 225/35 /19 Y 93

The rears are a lower profile than the front, not sure if I'm reading that right...

I’m running 245/35/19 and 275/30/19 Vredesteins on mine.....prices were the same from memory.....will be opting for pilots next.......

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55 minutes ago, Arth_Vader said:

Rears should be at least 255

LOL, sausage fingers!

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25 minutes ago, Womble72 said:

I’m running 245/35/19 and 275/30/19 Vredesteins on mine.....prices were the same from memory.....will be opting for pilots next.......

Is there any benefit from running different spec tyres?

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A lot of people say the ISF is under-tyred from the factory. The BMW E92 M3 of the same era weighs less and runs on 245 front, 275 rear for example.

You can put 245 front, 275 rear tyres on the stock samurai blade rims. Many people across all forums say this improves the car in terms of feel and handling characteristics. But expect slight increase in the tendancy to aqua-plane. Biggest extreme I've read on forums without widening arches is 285 front 305 rear or something mad like that. 

Whilst the rear tyre uses a lower profile number, the number is a percentage of the tyre width. So 40% of 225 isn't far away from 35% of 255.

The sizes are correct, when I purchased my Michelin PS4 tyres last year, fronts were around £150 each, rear £175 each, fully fitted.l and stock tyre sizes. I'm going to upsize next time around

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3 hours ago, Martyn76 said:

Is there any benefit from running different spec tyres?

The car feels better in handling aspect when in and about the lanes, have never tracked mine so can’t say if that’s the case or just a feeling I’m getting 😂 

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So this car has turned up scarily close (for my bank account) on eBay and also AT:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/184685691412?_trkparms=aid%3D111001%26algo%3DREC.SEED%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D20160908105057%26meid%3D73539c52e3564474b46ac2243bdd5840%26pid%3D100675%26rk%3D2%26rkt%3D8%26sd%3D304003070149%26itm%3D184685691412%26pmt%3D0%26noa%3D1%26pg%3D2380057&_trksid=p2380057.c100675.m4236&_trkparms=pageci%3A2c96e116-bd2f-11eb-a508-da9a9f13831c|parentrq%3Aa28972b41790acf3c61cb05afff5910c|iid%3A1

Will hopefully be going to take a look this weekend, it will be the first ISF we will have seen so will be doing a bit of due diligence re family needs, space in  the back for the kids, etc.

Anything to keep an eye out for, car looks pretty clean from the pics?

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