Keep My 5 Speed/LSD High mileage Lexus IS300? - Lexus IS Forum
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-20-2017, 07:36 PM Thread Starter
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Keep My 5 Speed/LSD High mileage Lexus IS300?

Hey guys, about a year ago i purchased my 5 speed Lexus IS300 at 309 000 km for 3500$ as my first car(in College). Knowing that the car needed some TLC i purchased it anyways, as i love IS300 and i wanted to start out in one. Car was a reliable daily driver during the summer.

Body Condition
As the summer went by, i worked on removing rust from the rocker panels, rear quarter panel (where the panel meets the rear fenders) and the roof.(I know it' ugly but it's my first time) I was able to successfully remove rust from the roof and one of my rear fenders. Unfortunately, the rust from the rocker panels seems to be rotting from the inside, hence it came back and it seems to require professional work from a body shop. Moreover, one of my rear rocker panel, seems to rust size of small pea that seems to come back, and overall car needs a respray since i have scratches and a few dings.


Drivetrain + Engine
Needless to say, even though the body condition of the car needed some work. The engine, transmission and the brakes are excellent. They performed very well, before storing the car for winter. However, due to the mileage of my car, i'm due for some heavy maintenance (90k maintenance), bodywork, new tires and i have to fix an exhaust leak.


Question/Thoughts
I'm currently working full time and will be able to save up 5k by the end of April, i was originally planning on using that money to repair the body, do some maintenance and modify my car. But after considering my budget i don't known if i should keep the car and repair it of if i should sell it, and buy another one. The biggest problem is, in Canada, Ontario it's very hard to find 5 Speed IS300 w/LSD's hence i don't know if it's a good move to hang on to my model.


If you've made it this far, thanks for reading!

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03 IS300 5 Speed w/LSD

Last edited by Biller; 02-20-2017 at 08:07 PM.
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-20-2017, 08:46 PM
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Granted, the is300 is a great car. I love my is300. But if your saving up 5000 and sell your car also. Go ahead and upgrade to something nicer. In my opinion the IS300 is obsolete now. You can find is250, is350, 2008+g35 or even G37. They all put out much more horsepower & even gets better MPG as well. LSD are standard on some, they also come equipped in 6-speed manuals.

Indeed the W55 5-speed is rare, but the transmission itself is weak compared to its automatic counterparts . The LSD is rare also but is it worth keeping a car over? I mean, how much does a LSD mean to you?

Hell, if you want another is300, buy one, swap the LSD over, and upgrade to a W58 5-speed. Or even a supra 6-speed getrag, Hell, they even make mounts to attach 350z 6-speed transmission.
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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-21-2017, 05:24 AM
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Quote:
The biggest problem is, in Canada, Ontario it's very hard to find 5 Speed IS300 w/LSD's hence i don't know if it's a good move to hang on to my model.
It's never going to be worth more than you paid for it originally so, the only question is whether you like it or not. There's no way I'd plug $5K into fixing a car like this. Instead I'd do minimal maintenance and just drive it till you get tired of it while saving money for the next one. Any rust repairs will only be temporary fixes at this point. The rot's sets in pretty deep.

I'd drive it into the ground. Probably wouldn't even bother to do the timing belt. Once it's dead, put the money saved into your next car.

Quote:
You can find is250, is350, 2008+g35 or even G37.
Personally I'd rather have a cheap Accord till I got out in the world for a couple years. There's always time for a nicer car later.
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-21-2017, 07:38 AM
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I'm in the same location as you, and I have the rust coming in on the front of the RR rocker. I'd just do like was previously mentioned and drive it into the ground. The drivetrain is going to last a long time with minimal maintenance, the body not so much since Ontario likes to through down salt on the roads which just kill cars so fast. Have fun with the car, do some minor maintenance but don't spend $5k on a car that rough. Once you're out of college and hopefully making some decent coin, then get a car that you're going to like to spend money on. Over 99% of vehicles out there are a losing investment.

02' MT w/MK3 Supra LSD and no sunroof
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-21-2017, 05:30 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shiftdrift06 View Post
Granted, the is300 is a great car. I love my is300. But if your saving up 5000 and sell your car also. Go ahead and upgrade to something nicer. In my opinion the IS300 is obsolete now. You can find is250, is350, 2008+g35 or even G37. They all put out much more horsepower & even gets better MPG as well. LSD are standard on some, they also come equipped in 6-speed manuals.

Indeed the W55 5-speed is rare, but the transmission itself is weak compared to its automatic counterparts . The LSD is rare also but is it worth keeping a car over? I mean, how much does a LSD mean to you?

Hell, if you want another is300, buy one, swap the LSD over, and upgrade to a W58 5-speed. Or even a supra 6-speed getrag, Hell, they even make mounts to attach 350z 6-speed transmission.
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Originally Posted by Ek9B18 View Post
It's never going to be worth more than you paid for it originally so, the only question is whether you like it or not. There's no way I'd plug $5K into fixing a car like this. Instead I'd do minimal maintenance and just drive it till you get tired of it while saving money for the next one. Any rust repairs will only be temporary fixes at this point. The rot's sets in pretty deep.

I'd drive it into the ground. Probably wouldn't even bother to do the timing belt. Once it's dead, put the money saved into your next car.



Personally I'd rather have a cheap Accord till I got out in the world for a couple years. There's always time for a nicer car later.
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Originally Posted by Piggity View Post
I'm in the same location as you, and I have the rust coming in on the front of the RR rocker. I'd just do like was previously mentioned and drive it into the ground. The drivetrain is going to last a long time with minimal maintenance, the body not so much since Ontario likes to through down salt on the roads which just kill cars so fast. Have fun with the car, do some minor maintenance but don't spend $5k on a car that rough. Once you're out of college and hopefully making some decent coin, then get a car that you're going to like to spend money on. Over 99% of vehicles out there are a losing investment.
Thanks guys for your honest opinions, looks like i'll be selling the car soon, to make room for a bigger budget and another car.

03 IS300 5 Speed w/LSD
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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-26-2017, 04:38 PM
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The is300 is not obsolete. My 05 is N/A, and can take a 250 any day, and handles far better. Any yes I have driven a few 250s and was less than impressed.
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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-27-2017, 09:24 AM
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The is300 is not obsolete. My 05 is N/A, and can take a 250 any day, and handles far better. Any yes I have driven a few 250s and was less than impressed.
That's not the point of this thread. We all know how well both cars can handle (with the right mods).

The original poster has a car that's in rough condition, so why bother on a car like that? It's not like these cars are rare or something. If it was a Datsun 510 or 1st gen Celica, that would be worth spending $5-10k on.

02' MT w/MK3 Supra LSD and no sunroof
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-27-2017, 12:40 PM
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That's not the point of this thread. We all know how well both cars can handle (with the right mods
Yeah...not particularly well...
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 11:56 AM
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Sell it - it's a loosing battle if you want it to look as good as new again.
I sold mine because I knew I was going to go all in and it was going to cost a pretty penny.

Buy a new Subaru WRX and that will be much better winter vehicle.
I replaced my IS with a WRX STi, which was about as close as I could get to the IS300 with the features I wanted.
That didn't last, but that's a different story.

SOLD: '03 GGP Manual IS300 97K Miles
- SRT HFI, B&M Shifter, Colgan Mask, Alpine F340 Amp, Infinity Kappa Speakers, 2-Din MP3 Player
- CompuStar 2W900FM-AS Alarm/Remote Start, Optima Red Top battery, White LED Interior
- Koni Yellow Adjustable, Eibach Pro Springs

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'16 MBM Audi S4 Manual
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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 12:21 PM
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+1

Have always been a fan of WRX's. My brother in law has an older one and with about the same amount of money I've put into my IS he's pushing 400whp and has a bunch of aero mods that make the car look great.

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post #11 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 06:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piggity View Post
That's not the point of this thread. We all know how well both cars can handle (with the right mods).

The original poster has a car that's in rough condition, so why bother on a car like that? It's not like these cars are rare or something. If it was a Datsun 510 or 1st gen Celica, that would be worth spending $5-10k on.
Uh, yup I can read. Dont need any schooling. Just responding to Shifts comments on the 300.

As far as the 510, I grew up with a Blue Bird SSS with rear Z disc conversion, and LSD!


And yes, sell it
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post #12 of 25 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 06:43 PM
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Yeah...not particularly well...
Asymmetrical tread tires, Hotchkis sways, and new struts if you must. Also switching up one tire size helps.
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post #13 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 09:00 AM
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Asymmetrical tread tires, Hotchkis sways, and new struts if you must. Also switching up one tire size helps.
I'm a track day guy so my idea of "handling" might not be the same as yours. Just looking at the suspension design you'd think it'd really handle well but in actual usage there are some flaws that really hamper it. One is that the rear subframe tends to walk around, the other is the limited alignment range. You don't have to get very low before you run out of alignment range.

Tire sizes are pretty limited for the weight of the vehicle too. The brakes have proven to be too small as well.

It's a fine near luxury car but it's not particularly good at handling. The WRX is really in the same boat. The WRX is a pretty terrible track car. You have to get an STI to have something that's pretty close to trackable out of the box.

Most people that talk "handling" don't really know what handling is. They never approach the limits of even the stock tires. The idea that lowering and putting thick sways on a car makes it handle is a bit of a farce.
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post #14 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-02-2017, 09:34 PM
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Never dropped my IS or any other car, and I thought we were talking street not track.
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post #15 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-03-2017, 06:48 AM
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Never dropped my IS or any other car, and I thought we were talking street not track.
We're talking "handling" and the only place to actually test "handling" is on the track. Otherwise you're just pretending. Most driving on the street never pushes the tires or the suspension enough to even tell if a car can handle well or not.

The only parts you can slap on that you know will improve the handling is a good set of tires. Other than that, without measurements you don't know if the sways you just slapped on made it better or worse. Feeling better doesn't mean it actually handles better.

The IS is a fine, softly spring near luxury car. I don't consider it a good handler though.
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