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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I'm going to be looking for a IS300 to replace my high mileage E36 once it dies. The reason why I want one is obvious.
a. The dimensions are similar to an E36/E46.
b. Toyota Reliability
c. It looks pretty damn good stock let alone with a tasteful body kit.
d. RWD

The only thing I need to know is what the driving dynamics are like. I heard from Bimmerheads that it handles like any non-M E36. How is the steering feel of the IS300?
 

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steering is a bit loose and the body roll is horrible. but you can fix that EASILY
 

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I'm going to be looking for a IS300 to replace my high mileage 96 328i once it dies. The reason why I want one is obvious.
a. The dimensions are similar to an E36/E46.
b. Toyota Reliability
c. It looks pretty damn good stock let alone with a tasteful body kit.
d. RWD

The only thing I need to know is what the driving dynamics are like. I heard from Bimmerheads that it handles like any non-M E36. How is the steering feel of the IS300?
A E46 330ci handles MUCH better than a IS300, but with some coils or shock/spring combo it can be fixed. Also might want some wider wheels, the IS comes with 17x7 not that much room to go wider.
 

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not its not as bad as sc300 since an is is little bit lighter.

As a comparison, it would be the same if not better handling than your 328
 

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Actually my best friend has an SC300. And I gotta say stock and stock, the IS rolls way more during turns, due to its higher center of gravity. However the IS is much more predictable and has much less understeer. SC's are known to be imbalanced but the IS can easily be made to handle like a dream. I just drove his car right now too...

-Aaron
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Does the IS have that "planted" feel on highway when you're at high speeds?
 

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Ya it doesnt stock, but with some suspension modifications it can. You dont have to spend tons of money to make the IS handle fairly well.
 

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Wow, I can't believe how much misinformation is on this site. Yes, the IS300 can handle better with suspension modifications LIKE ANY CAR WOULD. I use to own a E36 M3 sedan, it had Koni Adjustable struts and stock springs and the IS300 handles very well in comparison with the M3 with the Konis. Shit guys, the [email protected] IS comes with wishbone suspension and 17" wheels, it feels very smooth at high speeds. Its much smoother over bumps than my M3 was and its very precise in its handing, but there is some disconnect from the road (which I happend to like, not as many bumps), its not M3 precise, but very good none the less. I feel it also handles better than my old G35 sedan too which had Tein S-techs and sport suspension struts. My IS300 has the original stock suspension and 74,000 miles for reference.

Your 96 E36 with stock 16" wheels is no E36 M3 in handling so I can only imagine that the IS300 will handle much better than what you have now. Maybe all the guys posting negatives about their stock suspension on here have had blown shocks or were smoking some good shit. Best thing you can do is just get into a used IS at a Lexus dealership and take it for a drive. You won't be sorry. And you won't be misinformed, which seems to happen a lot here.
 

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Wow, I can't believe how much misinformation is on this site. Yes, the IS300 can handle better with suspension modifications LIKE ANY CAR WOULD. I use to own a E36 M3 sedan, it had Koni Adjustable struts and stock springs and the IS300 handles very well in comparison with the M3 with the Konis. Shit guys, the [email protected] IS comes with wishbone suspension and 17" wheels, it feels very smooth at high speeds. Its much smoother over bumps than my M3 was and its very precise in its handing, but there is some disconnect from the road (which I happend to like, not as many bumps), its not M3 precise, but very good none the less. I feel it also handles better than my old G35 sedan too which had Tein S-techs and sport suspension struts. My IS300 has the original stock suspension and 74,000 miles for reference.

Your 96 E36 with stock 16" wheels is no E36 M3 in handling so I can only imagine that the IS300 will handle much better than what you have now. Maybe all the guys posting negatives about their stock suspension on here have had blown shocks or were smoking some good shit. Best thing you can do is just get into a used IS at a Lexus dealership and take it for a drive. You won't be sorry. And you won't be misinformed, which seems to happen a lot here.
Im not sure were talking about the same thing. Notice I have a 4 not a 3 before the 6. a E46 330Ci out handles a IS300. Specaily a E46 M3. I haven't driven long enough in a E36 M3 to feel how it handles.
 

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steering is a bit loose and the body roll is horrible. but you can fix that EASILY
I've driven a boatload of high performance cars and by no means is the IS300's steering loose. The steering is direct, nicely weighted and extremely responsive.

If the IS were a sports car, I'd say it had too much body roll, but for a sports sedan, I'd say it compares well. It was too soft and had too much roll for me in stock form, but a quick, easy switch to Eibach Pro Kit springs fixed everything to my liking for a very cheap price.

Lastly, as a former owner of an SC400, I can tell you that the IS and SC are night and day. The SC is long, wide and low, with a fairly decent suspension. Its handling can best be described as stable, but slow to respond to inputs. You wouldn't want to autocross with it, but you'll effortlessly maintain high speeds on sweepers and on-ramps. The IS is lighter, narrower, has a slightly shorter wheelbase, has much better mass centralization and much more aggressive steering geometry, which makes it a blast to drive (something that both I and many car reviewers say got lost in the transition to the second generation IS). IS300's turn in very quickly and sharply. The best word to describe the IS is tossable. However, it's not as stable at high speed as the SC was. Nonetheless, you'll appreciate this if you ever have to dodge debris on the road at 90 mph. I ended up selling my SC400 because I simply didn't drive it anymore, the IS stole my heart and still has it.
 

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Im not sure were talking about the same thing. Notice I have a 4 not a 3 before the 6. a E46 330Ci out handles a IS300. Specaily a E46 M3. I haven't driven long enough in a E36 M3 to feel how it handles.
No, I knew what you were saying, but he currently drives a E36, not a E46. So comaring a E46 to a IS300 vs a E36 to a IS300 is apples to oranges and of no value to his decision since he drives an E36. The "Bimmerheads" are incorrect on saying that the IS300 handles like an E36 because it doesn't, I have had both. The IS300 suspension is far superior to ANY E36 setup in its stock form and potential for upgrading :) I am sure this topic has been beaten to death on both BMW and IS300 forums. And to take this even further, if you have the money for an E46, think about the potential of a used IS300 for similar money invested including a turbo and a few suspension upgrades, the IS wins hands down.

My point - sell the Bimmer before its plastic waterpump, radiator arms, shitty traction control sensors, rubber seals around the windows, control arms, and vanos unit all break or start to fail LIKE THEY ALL DO and sink you into a hole of debt and dispair and hatred of all Americanized BMWs...they suck and are ticking time bombs if you don't obsess over every part on the car.
Here is a pic of my old M3 sedan.

Or as I called her in my last year of ownership- THE MONEY PIT.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Wow, I can't believe how much misinformation is on this site. Yes, the IS300 can handle better with suspension modifications LIKE ANY CAR WOULD. I use to own a E36 M3 sedan, it had Koni Adjustable struts and stock springs and the IS300 handles very well in comparison with the M3 with the Konis. Shit guys, the [email protected] IS comes with wishbone suspension and 17" wheels, it feels very smooth at high speeds. Its much smoother over bumps than my M3 was and its very precise in its handing, but there is some disconnect from the road (which I happend to like, not as many bumps), its not M3 precise, but very good none the less. I feel it also handles better than my old G35 sedan too which had Tein S-techs and sport suspension struts. My IS300 has the original stock suspension and 74,000 miles for reference.

Your 96 E36 with stock 16" wheels is no E36 M3 in handling so I can only imagine that the IS300 will handle much better than what you have now. Maybe all the guys posting negatives about their stock suspension on here have had blown shocks or were smoking some good shit. Best thing you can do is just get into a used IS at a Lexus dealership and take it for a drive. You won't be sorry. And you won't be misinformed, which seems to happen a lot here.
+1 I did not know the IS had double wishbone. Double wishbone is far superior to MacPhersons. Thanks for educating me I knew some of these negative posts didn't sound right.

No, I knew what you were saying, but he currently drives a E36, not a E46. So comaring a E46 to a IS300 vs a E36 to a IS300 is apples to oranges and of no value to his decision since he drives an E36. The "Bimmerheads" are incorrect on saying that the IS300 handles like an E36 because it doesn't, I have had both. The IS300 suspension is far superior to ANY E36 setup in its stock form and potential for upgrading :) I am sure this topic has been beaten to death on both BMW and IS300 forums. And to take this even further, if you have the money for an E46, think about the potential of a used IS300 for similar money invested including a turbo and a few suspension upgrades, the IS wins hands down.

My point - sell the Bimmer before its plastic waterpump, radiator arms, shitty traction control sensors, rubber seals around the windows, control arms, and vanos unit all break or start to fail LIKE THEY ALL DO and sink you into a hole of debt and dispair and hatred of all Americanized BMWs...they suck and are ticking time bombs if you don't obsess over every part on the car.
Here is a pic of my old M3 sedan.

Or as I called her in my last year of ownership- THE MONEY PIT.
+1 :lol: .I love all BMWs( E21s up to E46s) but thats funny cause thats all true but way more so for M cars. My fan grenaded and took out the radiator with it. BMW engines are pretty reliable (I'm fast approaching 200K+) but EVERYTHING else fails apart. I thought about looking for a E46 until I heard about exploding coolant tanks and that they have some of same issues that E36s have unless you pony up for a 2005+ model (aka not worth the hassle). Did your M3 have a sagging glove box too?


P.S. BMW Ms and Audi Ss are beyond money pits.
 

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dont take this the wrong way but... just buy a damn is300. lol. you wont regret it. this car has a lot of potential
 

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steering is a bit loose and the body roll is horrible. but you can fix that EASILY
I'd really have to disagree with the description of the steering as "loose". I think the steering is tight and weighted nicely. It doesn't provide the same amount of feedback as a BMW, but it is still pretty good IMO.
 
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