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Discussion Starter #1
I have now owned my silver IS300 for one week and I thought a would do a bit of a mini-review detailing my initial impressions. Here goes:

BACKGROUND:

I purchased a silver IS300 here in Toronto, Canada. In Canada the car is sold with different option packages than in the USA. They are as follows:

A - Base Package: IS300 fabric, TRAC, 6 Disc CD, 8 Speaker, 16" Wheels

B - Appearance Package (adds 17" Wheels, Roof, LSD, Heated Seats to above)

C - B Package plus Leather, Power Seats

D - C Package plus Premium leather, Wood, Headlamp Washers

E - C Package plus Premium Leather, Wood, Headlamp Washers, Titanium Look Wheels

I purchased the B package.

INITIAL ISSUES:

After I picked up the car I gave it a good going over to see if I could find any factory defects, etc. The car was delivered in a flawless condition. The only small issue that I have noticed is that the headlight level warning light comes on when you first start the car. Sometimes the light stays on for a couple of minutes before going out. Not sure if there is a problem with the autoleveling system or not but I will have it checked out during the first service. The car also hestitates (as some people have reported) when you stomp down on the gas between 1rst and 2nd gears. Its almost like the computer isn't sure whether to upshift or downshift.

EXTERIOR:

All I am going to say is that this car looks damn good. Pure understated good looks. The headlights are awesome.

INTERIOR:

The like the overall design of the car. The interior is well thought out and all the controls are within easy reach. There seems to be a lot of clever design details. An example of this is that the automatic climate control is smart enough to wait until the engine has warmed before turning on the fan. This prevents you from getting blasted with cold air when you first start up the car in the winter. All the buttons, knobs and controls have a real solid feel about them. This car oozes quality. The only real oversight is the lack of a good armrest. Perhaps this was done intentionally (to allow skiis to fit or to keep both hands on the wheel...not sure). The cup holders are kinda cheesey but I don't like people eating and drinking in my car anyways. I really like the stock radio/CD. The sound quality is quite good and it is quite powerful for those who like to crank it up loud.

DRIVING:

This car is the smoothest car I have ever driven. The engine and transmission are so oily smooth that you wonder how it could be any better. The handling is perfect and not a single rattle can be heard under any driving conditions. Some might think that the steering is a little too light but I think that it is a welcome change compared to my previous car (Volvo). The throttle is slightly different than my previous cars. Every now and then you can sense a slight hesitation when you stomp down on the gas. Given that the throttle is fly-by-wire you wonder a bit about what the computer is adding and/or subtracting to your pedal commands...hehehehehe. The car has lots of power and pulling away from traffic is effortless. I find the car to be very quiet on the road even with my new snow tires installed.

WINTER HANDLING:

The car was a nightmare in the snow with the stock Bridgestone Potenza summer tires. What do you expect for summer tires? I installed a set of 16" Yokohama Guardex 600 tires and the car is now almost as good as my wife's old all wheel drive Subaru. My tire guy mounted the tires on a new set of aftermarket RX300 aluminum rims. If you want to drive it in the snow...get new snow tires. It is much safer and you will extend the life of your summer tires cause you will be using them less each year. After driving in the snow with the car and the new snow tires, I am now wondering why I neglected to purchase snow tires for my previous cars.

OVERALL THOUGHTS:

This car is soooo much fun to drive. I suspect it will be even more fun in the dry summer months. I suspect that everyone is enjoying th
 

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I love mine too, thanks for giving a detailed analysis of your experience so far. Enjoy!

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'01 Graphite Gray Pearl
"gray" not "grey"
 

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Jordan:

Thanks a lot for the well thought out review!! I enjoy reading topics of this nature and how everyone still feels about the car after a week... a month... two months... et, etc.

Glad to hear you're still enjoying your IS.
Can't wait to pick mine up...

Scott.
 

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JordanK, Can you handle compliments? You better get use to them. I know you're the man!!!Why? because you picked the silver, the same one I have and yes, I have the graphite rims. The silver when it's clean looks like it's wet and slippery. The only advantage I have over you is I live here in Texas so weather is not an issue. If it snowed or the roads were icy, they'd shut down damn near everything in the whole metroplex. I added the spoiler and had aftermarket wood put in. I know some people don't like it but I do and to add both options only cost like $800.00 with installation. Congrats on your car but just get use to the compliments. And if people ever have something negative to say to you just tell them "don't hate the playa, hate the game"!!!!

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Hmm, do you mean stock RX300 16" rims? Or aftermarket IS300 16" rims. If its the RX300 rims, where did u get them? How much? How did they fit?

-crontab -l

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An Ecstatic Owner of a Fully-Loaded Graphite Gray 2001 Lexus IS 300
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I purchased my winter tire package from a local tire place here in Toronto. The place was recommended to me by some other people here in Toronto who own IS300s. As many of you are aware, the IS300 has very large brake calipers and many types of aftermarket rims don't fit this car. In the fall, Lexus Canada realized that they were going to have a big rush of people asking for winter tires for the IS300 so they contacted a few local tire dealers and asked them if they could send a bunch of customers their way. They supplied the tire dealers with the exact specs so that they could obtain tires/rims that were suitable for the car. The guy who owns the tire place sourced a large quantity of aftermarket aluminum rims which are exact copies of the stock aluminum rims that ship with the RX300. They look just like the 16" RX300 rims except that the center cap has "Toyota" engraved on it instead of the Lexus logo. The center caps easily pop out and you can pick up replacement Lexus RX300 end caps at the dealer for $10-$20. The tire guy ordered a bunch of Lexus end caps and is throwing them in as part of the package. I do not know who makes these rims but I do know that they fit and look really good. I will try and find out the manufacturer and get it posted. Here is what I got:

4 x 16" RX300 aftermarket Aluminum Rims
4 x Yokohama Guardex 600 205/55/R16 Snows
4 x Lexus end caps
Tires mounted, balanced with weights on inside and installed on car.

Total price before taxes in US dollars: $1033.

I'm not sure if I got the best deal in the whole word but I wasn't in a position to negotiate after we got hit with a foot of snow last week. Most tire dealers were almost sold out of snows and decided to use the bad weather to their own advantage.

Hope this helps.

Jordan.
 
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