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Hi im new on here and thought id say hello im not a lexus owner as of yet but im looking to get a decent is200 sport some time soon, could someone help and let me know of any common faults to look out for whilst im browsing for 1!!!

Hi, and welcome.

This is a cut and paste from an old post on here, worth having a look at :)

Buying an IS200: What to look out for

Author: Colin Barber

This is a list of things to check when viewing an IS200. If you are unsure about checking these items it is recommended that you get an independent inspection carried out.

Ball joints Perform full lock turns and try to drive over speed bumps and listen out of a knocking noise or loose steering feel.

Water pump Look at the front of the engine for signs of any red fluid. The engine coolant is red and is easy to spot if the water pump is leaking.

Alloy wheels 17 wheels on the SE and Sport are prone to corrosion. If the car is within the 3 year manufacturers warranty they can be replaced. Otherwise except to pay £40-50 per wheel for refurbishment or look on eBay as there as many sets of IS wheels now appearing there.

Stone chips Take a good look at the bonnet and front bumper as stone chips are common.

Stereo Try to insert a few CDs into the changer and play tracks for different discs. Any problems with the mechanism will result in ERR3 being displayed. Lexus have extended the warranty on the stereo due to this common fault. This is only a common problem for early style stereos which have the CD slot at the bottom of the unit. A newer model with the CD slot at the top started to be fitted to the IS during the year 2000.

Ignition lock Insert the key into the ignition, turn on, turn off and remove the key. Repeat this a few times. Any sticking may indicate a problem with the ignition barrel (Note that the key needs to be pushed in when turning from ACC to OFF). Cost is around £80 for a new barrel.

Folding mirrors Open and close the mirrors a few times. If a mirror sticks it is normally nothing more than dirt which can be cleaned with soapy water and a quick squirt of WD-40.

Gearbox The 6-speed gearbox fitted to the IS200 is not the most forgiving however some do seem to be worse than others. Check for poor change between 1-2 and 2-3 gears.

Clutch Check for judder when pulling away and when changes between 1st and 2nd gears.

Tyre wear Front tyre wear occurs on the inside edge. Put the car on full lock so that the inside edge can be checked. Tyres cost around £90-120 each.

Sat Nav screen If the vehicle is fitted with satellite navigation then open and close the screen a few times and check there is no colour loss/lines/missing sections on the screen. Any problems indicate a fault with the flexible screen cable.

Sat Nav version If the vehicle is fitted with Satellite Navigation then check the CD version which is written on the disc. Anything under 3.x will not have full UK road coverage. To upgrade will cost around £100. A DVD based system will contain all road data but newer versions support enhanced features. To upgrade a DVD system will cost around £120. Updates are available from your Lexus dealer or online:

Master Keys - The vehicle should come with two master keys and one sub key (valet). You need a master key to have additional keys programmed, without such a key the engine ECU has to be replaced to obtain a new key and will cost around £800. Do not purchase a car without a master key and if it only has one master key then obtain another one ASAP which will cost around £100.

To determine if a key is a master or not insert it into the ignition, the security light should be off. If you insert a sub key the security light will illuminate for 1 or 2 seconds before going out. Master keys will also normally have three buttons and be able to lock the boot and glovebox. Sub keys only have two buttons, missing the remote boot release

Hope you get one soon they are a fantastic car to own.


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