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Lexus GS (2005-2011) Buying Guide

Lexus GS (2005-2011)
Lexus GS (2005-2011)Lexus GS (2005-2011)Lexus GS (2005-2011)Lexus GS (2005-2011)Lexus GS (2005-2011)Lexus GS (2005-2011)Lexus GS (2005-2011)Lexus GS (2005-2011)Pictures shown may not represent exact model specified

by Richard Dredge

If there's a car company that's synonymous with quality, reliability, high-tech and comfort, it's Lexus. This Toyota sub-brand has turned the luxury and executive segments on their head since its arrival in the UK in 1990. But Lexus has never had the cachet of its German rivals, which is why its used cars are generally significantly cheaper - even though they regularly lead owner satisfaction surveys. This is largely down to the reasonably low running costs, extremely generous equipment levels and peerless reliability. But these cars are also much rarer than the German alternatives and asking prices can be all over the place. So before buying a Lexus GS be sure to shop around to ensure you're getting the best possible buy.

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Build quality
Equipment levels
No diesels
No estates
Lifeless steering
Key Dates 
4/05The third-generation GS arrives in the UK in 3.0-litre V6 GS300 and 4.3-litre V8 GS430 forms.
7/06The GS300 Limited Edition appears, limited to 250 units.
4/07The GS450h hybrid goes on sale, with a 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine backed up by an electric motor.
1/08The 4.6-litre V8-powered GS460 arrives.
10/09The GS range is upgraded, with active head restraints up front, a hard-disc stereo system and USB input.
  • Swapping the original Yokohama tyres for Goodyear F1s can make it much better to drive, with better steering, less tramlining and more grip in the wet.
  • Dashboard creaks and rattles are common. Some dealers are more successful than others at fixing things.
  • Jump starting a hybrid GS can damage the electrical system; it has to be trickle charged instead.
  • For such a great cruiser, the seats aren't as comfortable as you might expect.
  • The pressure monitor sensors can easily be broken when the tyres are replaced.
  • The factory-fitted alloys can go porous, leading to the tyres going flat. Aftermarket wheels can be fitted, but they must have the right PCD and offset.
  • The xenon headlight bulbs blow and are costly to replace at Lexus dealers. The Philips D4S bulbs are available independently though.
  • A very lumpy idle on the GS450h points to failure of the six coil packs.

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