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Buying a 2009 MY SE-L in 2022. Folly?


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As in the title, is this a sensible proposition in 2022? Yes, I realise that 2nd hand prices have been somewhat boosted by World conditions (global pandemic with 'chip shortage' en croûte, an outbreak of war on Europe's doorstep...) so is this a sensible pursuit? Does an old IS250 still make sense in 2022?

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I've had my 2010 IS250 F Sport Since December 2020 and for the price you pay (Mine was £4500) you get a whole bunch of car for the money. The fact that yours is an SE-L top spec model it has even more bells and whistles in which most of our German rivals tend to lack even in 2022. The only concern I have with an IS nowadays is how ridiculous fuel prices are and the car is far from the most economical, that is made up for by its supreme reliability though. 

If the price is right and the age of a car doesn't concern you then by all means its worth it! WIth it being 2009 is it the facelift model with wing mirror indicators? 

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Yes, the one I'm looking at is a face-lift model. I am fully aware that the same car in 2019 would probably be around £2K cheaper (85K miles, auto SE-L in very good order even if the original purchaser was a bit shy with ticking the options list - less to go wrong I guess @ £6K from a dealer)...but I'm prepared to swallow the shortage 'tax' if it can still hold its own today.

You only need to check out spares 'n repairs on eBay to these are littered with 'modern' VAG and BMWs.

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Depends on what you are looking for. IS250 is surprisingly modern car, reliable, good fuel economy, actually nice to drive, very very well equipped (especially SEL). In 2019 I was trying to replace IS250 and I was struggling, many 10 years newer cars were not equipped as well and felt actually poorer inside. For example heated/cooled seats are extremely rare option on many cars, in Lexus that is standard. After a while I got Lexus RC and I after some time IS250 looked dated to me... depends how you look at it. The infotainment in IS250 and Lexus in general was kind of old always fashioned, so that will feel as older part, but all the rest is very modern. Even from outside they look kind of classy and being relatively uncommon, many people do not realise they are 15 years old cars.

Now the price is the issue, but it is an issue with all the cars nowadays. When I got my last IS250 in 2014, it was 2008 car with 122 k miles on it and I paid £4000. That was 6 years old car back then. Now even newest IS250s are over 10 years old, but they cost £8k+ so market has changed significantly for all cars...

So in short, if you just need reliable and comfortable car and you don't care about latest technology in it, then I think IS250 is still very good value option. 

 

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1 hour ago, Mister Rockets said:

Yes, the one I'm looking at is a face-lift model. I am fully aware that the same car in 2019 would probably be around £2K cheaper (85K miles, auto SE-L in very good order even if the original purchaser was a bit shy with ticking the options list - less to go wrong I guess @ £6K from a dealer)...but I'm prepared to swallow the shortage 'tax' if it can still hold its own today.

You only need to check out spares 'n repairs on eBay to these are littered with 'modern' VAG and BMWs.

Facelift is a good shout, aside from adding from new styling choices, it benefits from engine improvements to prevent carbon build up older IS’s in the US suffered from (not an issue here in the UK) and the infotainment is slightly modernised with iPhone / iPod usb connectivity and Bluetooth music. Newer infotainment can be provided via an android replacement or a grom VLINE for wireless apple carplay / android auto, I myself use the GROM and thanks to working with them it does work rather nicely but both of these are expensive options! (£500)
 

that sounds reasonably priced based on todays market for card and the low mileage, id certainly consider it but maybe see if you can negotiate on the price a little 😉

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If your selling a car to buy your new one make sure you check out the prices on autotrader etc.

 

I had an 07 fiesta, thought it would be worth £900

Being lazy, was happy with the price Autotrader said it was worth when you type in the year/ mileage = £1500

Sold it for £1350 and the guy that showed up was a dealer ?

Did some searching online and similar cars going for £2500.

My point being, would have knocked an whole lot more of the price f the new car.

 

Ps, ive just bought an IS250, engine and gearbox (main concern) as reliable as you can get. Look online at more modern equivalent BMW and Merc, full of issues out of warranty and not a smart buy.

I saw 2011 is250 going for £10500 at a Lexus garage with 60k miles, someones buying them!

My budget was £7500, look for good history and be careful around some dealers. Had a few bull----s that lied about history and MOT history. Infact MOT history online is of great help.

 

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Thank you, All for your prompt and informative responses! Sure makes a change from other fora. Based on this alone, I'm even more tempted to jump in and buy one...

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...had mine a year...zero issues...genuinely lovely drive...thirsty around town but the reliability and related minimal maintenance costs makes up for the thirst...wouldn't touch another marque of car at this age...just not worth the hassle...

...paid £4k...45k miles...immaculate...full lexus history...got lucky I guess...

 

 

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3 hours ago, Mister Rockets said:

Thank you, All for your prompt and informative responses! Sure makes a change from other fora. Based on this alone, I'm even more tempted to jump in and buy one...

I know what you are saying!! It is sure not like the (let’s say ‘Debating’) chat area’s of other’s😂

You will get knowledge first hand and in a civil manner ( well I always have anyway😀)

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GMG, £4k about a year ago for a SE-L with 45k miles….you must have worn a mask! Like Richard ( won’t let me put his real name here!!!) Turpin 😂😂😂😂

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22 minutes ago, Texas said:

GMG, £4k about a year ago for a SE-L with 45k miles….you must have worn a mask! Like Richard ( won’t let me put his real name here!!!) Turpin 😂😂😂😂

Must agree!  And there was I thinking that my (06) SE-L at £4.5k with 29k on the clock was the best buy 16 months ago! 😀

Mind you, learning since about non-compatibility for E10 petrol has slightly taken the shine off! 😒

But then given the weird nature of the current second hand car market they're both easily worth much more now than when we bought them!  Bazaar. 🙂

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I paid £7500 for my 09 SEL with 52000 on , 2 years ago. Autotrader valued it at £6800 last week so £700 depreciation in 2 years. I can live with that.

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Looked at quite a few online and was surprised at some of the prices

No haggling either on price, dealers just tell you cars are hard to get a hold of these days.

Would usually look for a private sale bargain, but none within a reasonable distance, as always.

Good luck with your purchase!

 

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9 hours ago, markeyszoo said:

I paid £7500 for my 09 SEL with 52000 on , 2 years ago. Autotrader valued it at £6800 last week so £700 depreciation in 2 years. I can live with that.

Similar depreciation levels for myself even after 5.5 years.

Paid £9750 in 2016. Current AT valuation with nearly 40K more miles - £8100

😃

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30 minutes ago, Mister Rockets said:

The car I'm looking at is a 2008 car registered early 2009 so would hopefully escape any ethanol related fuel issues.

It will 👌.

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...the e10 fuel thing really isn't an issue: I fill up with premium and then at a little over half a tank top up with e10 to give me e5!

...works like a charm...

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Depending on your long term view of ownership and the mileage you do.

I have my own logic so I took the decision to own only one car until I retire, in my case hopefully within 10-12 years.

The IS250/auto build quality is what impressed me when I first started to look something that will suit my life style and the above logic.

I needed a car that will do everything, short journeys, long journeys, quite when inside, stay hyper reliable and hype comfort all with regular service. I do max 5k a year so cost of fuel is not an issue.

I am a big believer of keep things forever and hate the obsolete by design  approach every complex consumer product has nowadays.

 

I paid in mid 2021 around 5k for a 45k car and the IS250 is a perfect fit.

 

 

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That was part of the reason i got one too, do less than 6000 miles a year

 

Looked into diesels but kept reading about stuff that can go wrong if you dont use them often enough.

Usually put £25 a week in fiesta, put £32 in the Is250, not the end of the world.

Some of you guys got GREAT deals, wished id bought one sooner.

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On 3/9/2022 at 12:54 AM, McShmoopy said:

Facelift is a good shout, aside from adding from new styling choices, it benefits from engine improvements to prevent carbon build up older IS’s in the US suffered from (not an issue here in the UK) and the infotainment is slightly modernised with iPhone / iPod usb connectivity and Bluetooth music. Newer infotainment can be provided via an android replacement or a grom VLINE for wireless apple carplay / android auto, I myself use the GROM and thanks to working with them it does work rather nicely but both of these are expensive options! (£500)

Not sure about that, as far as I know engine remains the same throughout the year for MK2 and even MK3, what makes you think there were improvements to reduce carbon build-up?

As far as infotainment goes, yes I believe around 2010 came USB and Bluetooth integration (I think it was the particular system with HDD which enabled that, so trim dependant), but overall the system was still very very poor and even cheapest Chinese android systems are better then Lexus integrated one of final year. And as far as Chinese systems goes they cover all years and all options, with ML, without ML, with sat-nav screen and without one, so this is not distinctively facelift advantage - you can replace entire unit in any Lexus between 2005 and 2012 (and obviously there are different system for MK3 then).

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34 minutes ago, Linas.P said:

Not sure about that, as far as I know engine remains the same throughout the year for MK2 and even MK3, what makes you think there were improvements to reduce carbon build-up?

As far as infotainment goes, yes I believe around 2010 came USB and Bluetooth integration (I think it was the particular system with HDD which enabled that, so trim dependant), but overall the system was still very very poor and even cheapest Chinese android systems are better then Lexus integrated one of final year. And as far as Chinese systems goes they cover all years and all options, with ML, without ML, with sat-nav screen and without one, so this is not distinctively facelift advantage - you can replace entire unit in any Lexus between 2005 and 2012 (and obviously there are different system for MK3 then).

From what I researched before I bought the car it was said by a few reviewers both UK and American that the pre de lift IS suffered from carbon build up and that this was addressed by Lexus in the facelift models. Truth be told from what I gather I think this only affected American drivers as they have poor quality fuel and I don’t think many people in the UK including the LOC community have an issue with that pre facelift.

You are right, the main Achilles heel of the IS is it’s dated infotainment however I have found that with the facelift the Bluetooth music streaming is just about acceptable as far as bare minimum requirements for Infotainment. Whenever I drive my mums IS250C or if my grom is being a pain it’s works nicely enough and the Audi quality is still superb.

Android units do however provide more better infotainment but they will ofcourse cost no small amount of money and there is far compatibility with the newer facelift cars. I know this ti be the case as I’ve recently managed to break my OEM stereo for my 2010 F sport and I considered getting an XTRON Android unit as I don’t believe the Teyes CC3 is fully compatible with my car unfortunately! I did manage to get a new one via a beaker so let’s hope I don’t have to haha 

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13 minutes ago, McShmoopy said:

From what I researched before I bought the car it was said by a few reviewers both UK and American that the pre de lift IS suffered from carbon build up and that this was addressed by Lexus in the facelift models. Truth be told from what I gather I think this only affected American drivers as they have poor quality fuel and I don’t think many people in the UK including the LOC community have an issue with that pre facelift.

You are right, the main Achilles heel of the IS is it’s dated infotainment however I have found that with the facelift the Bluetooth music streaming is just about acceptable as far as bare minimum requirements for Infotainment. Whenever I drive my mums IS250C or if my grom is being a pain it’s works nicely enough and the Audi quality is still superb.

Android units do however provide more better infotainment but they will ofcourse cost no small amount of money and there is far compatibility with the newer facelift cars. I know this ti be the case as I’ve recently managed to break my OEM stereo for my 2010 F sport and I considered getting an XTRON Android unit as I don’t believe the Teyes CC3 is fully compatible with my car unfortunately! I did manage to get a new one via a beaker so let’s hope I don’t have to haha 

American fuel is not worse quality than we have here, it is true that they have more issues with carbon build-up, but I don't know what particular reason is. That said there were no changes in the engine which could make any difference - main issue is that 4GR-FSE is direct injection only, compared to direct + port injection in 2GR and 3GR, meaning fuel never washes the intake valves and carbon accumulates there. My guess would be that this is simply matter of age - pre-face lift cars are older and have more miles on them, so at some point it was true that pre-facelift was suffering from carbon build-up, but face-lift at the time were too new and too low miles to have the issue. I think by now same mileage cars would have same issues. 

It may be the case that GROM compatibility is better with face-lifted car, but when it comes to complete replacement there is no difference, there are many many options for both face-lift and pre-facelift and mostly it is only the wiring harness which is different. Besides full android systems are comparable in prices (if not bit cheaper) than GROM. And you maybe be right, maybe Teyes CC3 in particular is not compatible with pre-facelift, but it does not mean that there aren't 100s of different options which are. 

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