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Discussion Starter #1
So this weekend im going to be picking up an 02 or 05 IS300. first question would be to you guys is what should i watch for when buying these cars? besides the normal visible things.

I will have ruffly 3k that id like to see into it asap.i am in California but can get a magic smog done. ive read thru the stickies quickly but they are old and im sure there has been improvements and better options. so my question is going to be what should i spend the money on and in WHAT ORDER to see performance enhanced. please keep in mind that this will be the first car ive done any modifications to mechanically. i usually just buy them fast. but i am mechanically inclined. so no task is scary lol.>:):wink:

also does anyone recommend a manufacturer to get new seat covers and dash trim kits?

thanks!
 

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cool to see someone who is a semi-local. There was a recent thread discussing everything you should check out maintenance wise:
http://my.is/forums/f257/hey-601137/

as for your 3k. it all depends on what you wanna do with the car. i like to mess with suspension prior to messing with any go fast mods. but thats just me. also keep in mind that most NA mods are really not going to net you a lot of power. which is another reason i would put the money into suspension (or save up for a swap). popular mods are:

intake
header/exhaust
mk4 na flywheel swap
1 pc driveshaft
mild cam

if you want to balance both, you could do something like coilovers, wheels/tires, and intake/exhaust.

not sure about seat covers, i would just buy new seats.
 

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I bought an'04 IS300 a couple of weeks ago (Cali also). First thing I did was replace spark plugs, valve cover gaskets, and synthetic oil change. Took it to my mechanic after, to check Serpentine Belt and Timing Belt and it was confirmed as a "recent change"...timing markings were fresh and Water Pump was new. The IS300 I bought has over 160k miles so it's well used. Interior suffers from the dreaded "sticky dash" and I am working on remedying this.

My suggestion, aside from going for looks right away, is to spend that $3k into maintenance...unless you are purchasing the car with somewhat or complete records from the previous owner. Luckily, I am performing all the maintenance myself since I bought this car as my "toy". Not looking for massive HP gains personally, but will want some increase in that department. The goal of this "toy" is to be nimble enough for fun drives in the nearby canyons (Angeles National Forest).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
cool to see someone who is a semi-local. There was a recent thread discussing everything you should check out maintenance wise:
http://my.is/forums/f257/hey-601137/

as for your 3k. it all depends on what you wanna do with the car. i like to mess with suspension prior to messing with any go fast mods. but thats just me. also keep in mind that most NA mods are really not going to net you a lot of power. which is another reason i would put the money into suspension (or save up for a swap). popular mods are:

intake
header/exhaust
mk4 na flywheel swap
1 pc driveshaft
mild cam

if you want to balance both, you could do something like coilovers, wheels/tires, and intake/exhaust.

not sure about seat covers, i would just buy new seats.
whats the hottest intake and exhaust system out right now.
 

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Mr. Roo
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Well, you sure can burn that $3k really fast on "the hottest" stuff.

For seat covers, I'd look at Clazzio:

http://www.clazzio.com/car-leather-kits.php

"the hottest" exhaust will run you around $1000, such as from Dezod Motorsports.

Best intake it the SRT intake, which was $600 new, but can be found used every now and then.

Dash trim kits can be found at many places, but here's one https://www.carid.com/2002-lexus-is-dash-kits/

CarID is an active vendor on here, might be able to get some discounts.
 

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On mine I didn't have a whole lot of time to 'research' it. But if i did and didn't have mtc records, I'd do some oil analysis of the trans (assuming it's an auto) and motor. Only about 20.00 ea test.
I use Analysts INC. like a blood test for your motor, gear box etc.

Then jack it up and take a look underneath to get a GOOD look at the tires for abnormal wear, Struts for leakage, bushings that are out of place and un-centered. ALSO, for over spray from body damage, might even see 'zip-ties' holding things together..

e
 
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