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1999 Lexus GS300 upgrades

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Old 07-08-01, 10:26 PM   #1
Lexus_Guy2001
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Hello. I just bought a 1999 Lexus GS300 Sedan in Millenium Silver on black leather and with 17,000miles. I want to do some upgrades and I have about $5000.00 to spend, excluding the rims. Where do I start? I want to make the car extremely hot, something that catches everyones eyes. I will need company names and part numbers if possible, please be as specific as you can. I would also like to get a carbon fiber interior, is this possible? Where do I buy it? Is it easy to remove the existing wood? I am also looking at purchasing a set of new MOMO Corse 17" rims. However there is one problem, the offset. The momo's are running a +47mm while the lexus has only +40mm, will this be a problem? Thank you all so much for taking the time to help me, I look forward to your advice.

Thanking you in advance,

Carl Hayes
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Old 07-09-01, 04:11 AM   #2
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well, if you want to catch people's eye, then look into buying wheels, aero kits, exhaust and things like that. check out www.gtautosports.com for aerokits. exhaust and wheels, just go to your local car tuner shop and check it out. better if you get to see the actual thing before you buy it.
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Old 07-09-01, 05:03 AM   #3
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Congrats on the new purchase! Good color combo! $5K w/o including the cost of wheels/tires is an ample budget...

I would put on your Nomex suit Carl...Bitslapper might be lurking right around the corner!

As for making the car "extremely hot", this is a going to be a matter of opinion...to some members, doing a 2JZ-GTE swap would be "extremely hot", so others, putting on gold plated rims and pimpin' your ride around like some rap star/drug dealer is "extremely hot"...

All the Carbon fiber kits I've seen are "overlay" kits...essentially they're thick STICKERS that just stick on TOP of your wood (cheezy IMO).

I personally like WELL handling cars, so my "upgrades" are a little more suspension oriented...so here's my list (recalling my old post regarding this...can we say "SEARCH ENGINE" or "ARCHIVE" )...prices are approx...

Now be warned, with the upgrades I'm about to list, your GS will no longer ride like a Cadillac...it's not going to ride like a lower Acura Integra either, but somewhere in-between...

If you're local to another member, I'm sure they wouldn't mind taking you for a ride in their car so you can see what it's like...(I have all these mods, minus the body kit, on 20" rims FYI)

All the following products (except the coilovers I listed) can and should be bought from Steve Ganz @ Carson Toyota (310-522-2300)

1) TRD Swaybars (front and rear) - $550 (for both)
2) TRD Lower Chassis Brace..aka LCB - $170
3) L-Tuned Steering ECU - $125
4) Strut Tower Bars...aka STB...since you have a GS300, you'll have to find a front STB that fits...with the rear, you can go with any brand...the UGO rear STB (carbon fiber) is around $250...TOM'S, Cusco, Carbing and other make rear STB's...Steve sells UGO and TOM's... Here's a link to the UGO STB install I did on my GS430...for your GS300, the rear STB install will be the same but like I said, you'll have to find a front STB that fits (the NA GS300 motors sit up higher than the Japanese Turbo GS300 motor or the GS400/430 motor...)

Link to UGO STB install on GS430

5) Height adjustable coilovers - H&R, Tein CS, APEXi WS, etc. Prices will range from about $1200-$1800 or so (with the Tein's and the H&R's being the most expensive). Any of those 3 are excellent. The Tein's offer dampening adjustment.

6) JDM Factory Body Kit ($1800-$1900)...excellent add-on kit that comes pre-painted...also look at the mesh grille...you might like it

There, that should be about $5000...maybe a tad bit less, but those are the upgrades that I would do (and did do!) That will give you a excellent handling car (will give "sports cars" a damn good scare) and with the mild body kit, it'll look classy yet aggressive w/o looking "ricer" wanna-be civic-racer-boy like...

If you STRICTLY want looks, then get the L-Tuned lowered shock/spring combo (like $550 or so) and spend more cash on a different body kit (there are MANY)...body kits can range from $2000-$5000 for most kits...Japanese kits are more exclusive and cost more and are harder to get...but that's why they're more exclusive...more common kits include Rod Millen's kit (RMM), L-Sportline's kit, and a few Japanese kits that are sold here regularly like Blitz, Veilside, etc...personally, I like the AutoCouture, Wise Sports, and Quest Power kits...but I have considered the RMM kit and the JDM Factory kit...still haven't decided

The left over funds should go to the wheels...this is the most difficult part and it's a whole thread on it's own...anyways, here we go...

First off, why bother with 17" wheels? Momos? Forget about it! 17's are going to turn heads like a 90 year old lady in a thong bikini. If you're going to do that pointless of a "upgrade", don't even bother! I would recommend at LEAST a 19" rim for any sort of visual impact. 20" if you can afford it and you don't mind the stiffer ride (though 19's don't ride much softer than 20's). If you're neighborhood had a ton of potholes, 18's might be a better bet.

Now keep in mind, the ride on 20's isn't horrible. I drive on them daily. But some people really like the soft ride of a stock GS on 16" or 17" wheels...

Anyways, for 19" or 20" wheel, plan on spending in the neighborhood of $3000-$5500 for QUALITY wheels. Judging by the amount you want to spend on other parts alone, I'm going to guess that you're not the cheesy type of guy that wants to buy cheap knock-off, low quality rims to save a few bucks. 18's will cost less ($2000 and up).

Brands I recommend...HRE, Fiske, Kinesis Motorsports, L-sportline, Lowenhart, Racing Hart, Weds, Rays/Volk, Speed Star Racing (SSR), Manaray Sports (NOT the Vertec VR5 line however), Work, AVS/Yokohama, BIM Creative, Club Linea, Altstadt/Riverside, AutoCouture, Dazz, etc...

Brands to stay away from! Lexani, Arielli, Alba, Giovanna, G-Sport, Katana, Niche, Neeper, MHT, Elite, KMC, Zenetti, ADR, Ace, Tenzo, etc., etc...basically, any cheap *** wheel! Look for OG wheels...not knock-off designs...

Other brands I would NOT do...Any Mercedes brand (Brabus, Carlsson, Lorinser, AMG, etc.), any BMW tuners (Hamann, Hartge, MK, etc.), Momo's, Anteras (both are played out beyond belief), etc..

At any rate, wheels tend to be a personally thing and there are many things you have to look at. Do you want a one piece or multi-piece rim? Do you want high quality Forged wheels or Cast wheels? Finish (Silver, Diamond, Chrome, etc.), Basic design (Spoke, Mesh, Dish, etc.), etc., etc...

Check out www.hrewheels.com, www.fikse.com, www.dazzmotorsports.com...

Also, if you do large 19" or 20" wheels, I would recommend doing a front brake upgrades (AP Racing, Brembo, RMM, Supra, etc..)...prices range from $600 (for the Supra brakes which say "SUPRA" on it) to $4000 for Swift's 14" AP Racing setup...(but unless you do some serious canyon or track racing, you can do with the $1200 RMM upgrade...)

Anyways, hope that'll get you started...
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Old 07-09-01, 09:45 AM   #4
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Thank you mana for the thourogh reply! :


I have to ask, why stay away from MOMO? The rims I am looking at are forged, and cost about $800.00 per rim to buy, so for 17's, they are not bad. However, I saw a real nice set of rims on ebay, I would like your opinion on them. Infact they are already on somebodys GS400. The link is:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/aw-cg...030557&r=0&t=0

That will take you there. What about the offset? Does anyone know if that will make a difference? Unfortunately I live in Canada, so I dont think I live near any of you {wish I did, love to see what you did with your lex****. Can anyone reccomend a good air filter and ground affects kit?


Thank you all again

Carl Hayes
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Old 07-09-01, 11:52 AM   #5
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Carl,

Granted momos are quality co w/nice products; but if you want to make your car stands out, especially w/any of the body kits manaray recommended, 17s would seemed even smaller. you have a very good budget, go for your goal. wheels are like shoes, and that is where you make the 1st impression.

for offsets, +47 might be pushing the limit, particularly w/17s. try to call MOMO and find out.

the wheels on Ebay are copies of YOKOHAMA/AVS model 5. i would def not buy them for $2000. heck for $2800(tyres included), i would rather get some 18s in anything from the RAYS/Volks line.

Ground affect kits-manaray has listed many for you to takelook at www.gtautosport.com

post if you have anymore qs.

william
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Old 07-09-01, 12:34 PM   #6
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WOW! Thanks all. I just saw that Rod Millen Kit and fell in love with it, I have to get it. One question: Who installs it and how much does it cost. I could probably do it myself, but would much rather have a profesional do it. I think I am going to go with 18 -19 " rims. I want them to be forged and light weight if possible. I perfer the crome/diamond look, but am open to anything. Any sugestions?

Thanks again

Carl Hayes
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Old 07-09-01, 02:35 PM   #7
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Cool

Click the image to open in full size.

yah get these ...VeilSide Andrew Racing eF's...they come in chrome too...but i would get the polish. I think they're like $4gs for the set...baller stuff. they meet your requirments...chrome, and pointy
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Old 07-09-01, 03:18 PM   #8
GS4Will
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Carl,

the rmm kit is nice and priced ok.

do you have a paint booth at home? a body kit requires painting and fittment. i gave yet hear anyone accompilsh this without take it to a good body shop.
in LA, cal, the cost is ~$5-700 for everything.

if you prefer something light and forged, look no further than japanese wheels like www.volkracing.co.jp or these ones":
HRE, FIKSE.

will
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Old 07-09-01, 07:40 PM   #9
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Hey Carl,

The reason why I don't like MOMO's is because they're played out and their designs (to me) are weak. They were the **** like 6 years ago..but now they're just ****.

As for the ebay item, as gs4will said, those are knock-offs. The REAL rim is the AVS/Yokohama Model 5. A bad *** rim and available in 19"

Canada, eh? That's a little far for me....

As for the offset, +47 will sit it too much...if you're going to do a staggered offset, I recommend a 8.5" wide rim in front with a +37 to +40 offset (+37 will get it right to edge w/o rubbing, this is what I use). For the rear, a 9.5" wide rim with a +38 to +42 offset (+38 will get it right to edge...this is what I use for the rear).

As for wheels, I know that gs4will is partial to Volk/Rays but I think they give more of a "racer" look. Personally, I like more of a luxury look. Mo over at Swift Racing (www.swiftracing.com) give great deals on HRE wheels. The only downfall is that they take a month or two to build (they are custom built to order, so you can specify offsets, finish, etc., etc...a true custom built rim). A basic 19" x 8.5" wheel is about $920/ea ($1178 list) and a 19" x 10" is $987 ($1271 list) from Mo...but he has been know to do some GREAT package deals with tires...email him and see what he can do for you...I prefer diamond to chrome (chrome is just too flashy for me...but hey, it's your car!)

As for the RMM kit, gs4will pretty much covered that. The kit is urathane so make sure the body shop uses the proper flex agent in the paint otherwise you won't have very good results...

Anyways, since you can't visit me, here's a front and back picture of my GS...I'm am still waiting for the body kit, exhaust, and supercharger...What you can't see in that picture is my AP Racing/Stillen brakes, dunno if I had them installed when I shot this picture...you can click on that link I gave you for the UGO STB's if you want to see the STB's...

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Last edited by Manaray; 07-09-01 at 07:42 PM..
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Old 07-09-01, 08:40 PM   #10
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So you finally posted some pics of your GS, huh manaray?

Its nice and I know its nicer than it looks because I know that you only put the best in your car!

I would like to see a pic of your car with your new brake system. I know I am not going to be installing that advanced of a brake system in my GS, but I like the looks so I wanna see what they look like.

So far, I guess you have done the handling package (all TRD bars plus rear carbon STB, ecu, and tein coilovers), wheels and AP/Stillen Brakes?

Also, I am not going to be getting any new wheels, I like my stock 17" chromes, but still, I would like to know what you guys mean by "offset?"

Thanks in advance!
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Old 07-09-01, 10:45 PM   #11
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millenium silver was offered on 99 models? I didn't know that.
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Old 07-11-01, 07:32 PM   #12
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Globe - The '99 GS wasn't offered in Millenium Silver...it was offered in Alpine Silver Metallic (it's a "flatter" looking paint)

Nanotech - Actually, I've posted a couple pictures before...thanks for the compliment. I actually have H&R coilovers right now, but I may have another brand soon...

I have the TRD Sway Bars (Front & Rear), TRD Lower Chassis Brace, L-Tuned Steering ECU, UGO Strut Tower Bars (Front & Rear), H&R Coilovers, and of course, the HRE 543 rims...

Here's picture of the brakes..
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Old 07-11-01, 10:58 PM   #13
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does anyone know what strut tower bars are available for the gs300? if so, where can i get one?
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Old 07-11-01, 10:58 PM
 
 
 
 
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