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What cars did you also test drive / almost buy instead?

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IS - 3rd Gen (2014-present) Discussion about the 2014+ model IS models

What cars did you also test drive / almost buy instead?

 
Old 02-08-19, 08:48 PM
  #1  
nquinn
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Default What cars did you also test drive / almost buy instead?

I'm looking to buy a new car soon in the 15-25k range, and the IS300 creeps into that range.

At a glance, I like the Toyota reliability and AWD. The ability to tune it to IS350 capabilities also looks great given that the car is basically identical.

However, my hesitations lie in the following:

1. My 2005 subaru legacy GT stock is around 250hp (290hp if tuned), and runs around 17mpg city/25mpg highway. The 2016 IS300, 11 years newer, has nearly identical specs, and I was really hoping to get better gas mileage... not 19/26 or whatever.
2. I'm not a huge fan of the front grill styling, or the boxy interior/console styling
3. No CarPlay. Hell, even a Honda Accord in 2016 has CarPlay.
4. Overall it's a more expensive car to own than something like say, the TLX

Anything else I should be cross-shopping that would be a good "performance sedan"? I really like the idea of owning a reliable Lexus, but this car feels a bit outdated in all of its technology.

Would love to hear your feedback.
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Old 02-08-19, 09:23 PM
  #2  
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Originally Posted by nquinn View Post
I'm looking to buy a new car soon in the 15-25k range, and the IS300 creeps into that range.

At a glance, I like the Toyota reliability and AWD. The ability to tune it to IS350 capabilities also looks great given that the car is basically identical.

However, my hesitations lie in the following:

1. My 2005 subaru legacy GT stock is around 250hp (290hp if tuned), and runs around 17mpg city/25mpg highway. The 2016 IS300, 11 years newer, has nearly identical specs, and I was really hoping to get better gas mileage... not 19/26 or whatever.
2. I'm not a huge fan of the front grill styling, or the boxy interior/console styling
3. No CarPlay. Hell, even a Honda Accord in 2016 has CarPlay.
4. Overall it's a more expensive car to own than something like say, the TLX

Anything else I should be cross-shopping that would be a good "performance sedan"? I really like the idea of owning a reliable Lexus, but this car feels a bit outdated in all of its technology.

Would love to hear your feedback.
The Lexus IS is for somebody who wants drivetrain peace of mind over technology. I was very annoyed I couldnít get Apple CarPlay on my IS, but I found a way to get Apple CarPlay so I solved that problem. Regardless, my point is if you canít sacrifice the advanced technology and newness, than the IS might not be for you. If you can live without the newest tech and stuff then you would be getting a solid and reliable car. I think the IS is a great car overall for the long run, but if you like the latest and greatest just lease a car.
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Old 02-08-19, 09:43 PM
  #3  
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If you're already not a fan of the front bumper, interior, and lack of technology this probably isn't the car for you. It will eat away at you if you think you can get past it.
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Old 02-09-19, 07:43 AM
  #4  
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Test drive it. The car is for people that place handling, ride quality and reliability over other metrics.
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Old 02-09-19, 08:00 AM
  #5  
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I bought by 2014 is350 F Sport used and I couldn't be happier. The styling is something that I like, a lot, both inside and out. I couldn't care less about Car Play but I love Mark Levingston sound option (wouldn't buy one without it). The seats are fantastic.

I considered the following:
  1. Audi S4 - drove it loved it but at the price point I was trying to hit I was looking at is350's with 25k miles or S4's with 45k miles. I liked the AWD (used to own a WRX)
  2. Infiniti Q50/60 - Liked the looks of the new ones. I really liked the hybrid. The idea of solid performance with gas mileage in the 20's. Just liked the Lexus better and the trunk on the Hybrid was tiny (had to make room for the batteries)
  3. BMW 335/435 - Really liked these too and thought this was what I was going to end up in. But, like the S4 it was either spend more or accept more miles.
  4. WRX - Having had one, just felt like a step back for me and not on par with the others, especially the interior
  5. Audi SQ5 - yes, it's an SUV but I considered it. Liked it, didn't want to pay for it (or a Macan).
I have 2 kids in high school so I needed to spend a reasonable amount of $$ and have a car that was going to be reliable and not have huge maintenance costs. The ongoing cost and maintenance costs really moved me away from the S4/435 towards the is350. I will also admit that the Audi RS3 and the Tesla Model 3 call to me but I'll have to wait on them as I have a lot of college tuition bills looming...
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Old 02-09-19, 04:14 PM
  #6  
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No other cars in this price range has side mirrors that doesn't fold... u gotta live with it...
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Old 02-10-19, 10:58 AM
  #7  
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if you don't like the gas mileage, front grill, technology, and 'boxy' interior why are you even considering the car at this point? Sounds like you already dislike the car?

I love the the looks of the interior of this car (as well as the exterior).... the center console especially with how flush it is with no big gaps anywhere. Seats are comfortable for me as well.

I can live without 'CarPlay' and all the extra technology knowing I got a solid car which wont give many issues.
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Old 02-11-19, 09:33 AM
  #8  
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Originally Posted by nquinn View Post
I'm looking to buy a new car soon in the 15-25k range, and the IS300 creeps into that range.

At a glance, I like the Toyota reliability and AWD. The ability to tune it to IS350 capabilities also looks great given that the car is basically identical.

However, my hesitations lie in the following:

1. My 2005 subaru legacy GT stock is around 250hp (290hp if tuned), and runs around 17mpg city/25mpg highway. The 2016 IS300, 11 years newer, has nearly identical specs, and I was really hoping to get better gas mileage... not 19/26 or whatever.
2. I'm not a huge fan of the front grill styling, or the boxy interior/console styling
3. No CarPlay. Hell, even a Honda Accord in 2016 has CarPlay.
4. Overall it's a more expensive car to own than something like say, the TLX

Anything else I should be cross-shopping that would be a good "performance sedan"? I really like the idea of owning a reliable Lexus, but this car feels a bit outdated in all of its technology.

Would love to hear your feedback.
I only looked at two other options, an Audi A4 Premium Plus and a BMW 328i (basically a base model). I liked the interior of the A4 a lot, but I didn't really like the steering feel. The 328i had pretty much the same story. I also thought the infotainment was a bit much for me at the time, never having owned a luxury car before. I also just thought the IS felt more solid and substantial on the road. I preferred the steering and the way it felt going around turns. I also liked the looks, and discovered I like Atomic Silver even though it sometimes looks boring in pictures - in person, it's a great color that plays well with different lighting. Oh, and I get a V6 instead of a four banger? Yes, please.

Overall I understand your gripes with the car, though. The interior dimensions are something I personally love, as the car kinda hugs the driver and makes it feel more sporty. However, it could seem too small for larger people, or those used to having large vehicles. And, the seats are phenomenal. Blows away the base seats in the 328i and A4 (at least the ones I drove). As soon as I sat in the car, I knew the seats were going to be comfortable instantly. And I've driven it on a couple of longer drives (i.e., 4+ hours of driving each direction), and they've held up nicely for that length of trip. No back pain or soreness.

I agree with EZZ that this car's benefits over the competition lie in the intangibles. The seating, steering, ride quality, and reliability are all high points of this car, which often don't show up on spreadsheets. And yeah, the gas mileage is only 19/26, but, you're getting a reliable, naturally-aspirated, smooth engine, and still outdoing your Legacy in terms of MPG numbers, while increasing the cylinder count!

I suppose if CarPlay, fuel economy, and interior space are more important to you than prestige, dependability, and handling dynamics, then sure, go for the Acura. It has all those things, though, the latter attributes are more plentiful in the Lexus. It's a question of priorities. Best of luck.
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Old 02-11-19, 10:28 AM
  #9  
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After a G35x and G37x, I tried the Q50. Lots of power but it felt like sitting in a living room.
I didn't want turbo, also. In terms of reliability, my G35x had a major engine problem under warranty.
I certainly did not drive it hard. Just bad luck. A3/S3 were in the radar, but they just look like Audi
"starter kits" to me.....too small looking, also the turbo....

I liked the cockpit feel of the IS300 Sport.
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Old 02-13-19, 08:52 PM
  #10  
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Previous car was a 2004 v6 camry, and when that died.... This is gonna be random, but I was cross-shopping a 4Runner. Every time I see a modded one, I wish I had one. But its way more space than I need right now, plus I prefer a smaller car to navigate tight and congested city roads. Plus I still enjoy going fast every now and then. Drove my friend's 4Runner to get a feel and its a different kind of fun. Hard to explain. I could easily see one as second vehicle though.
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Old 02-14-19, 09:02 AM
  #11  
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I almost bought an AMG C43. And honestly, I probably will at some point.

Chris
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Old 02-14-19, 04:05 PM
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Almost bought a 2dr 428 but the dealer sold it before I could get there. I'm happy I went with my IS350 though. I imagine the cost of the 428 would have been much higher and 2 doors would get old.
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Old 02-14-19, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by RageRacerM View Post
Previous car was a 2004 v6 camry, and when that died.... This is gonna be random, but I was cross-shopping a 4Runner. Every time I see a modded one, I wish I had one. But its way more space than I need right now, plus I prefer a smaller car to navigate tight and congested city roads. Plus I still enjoy going fast every now and then. Drove my friend's 4Runner to get a feel and its a different kind of fun. Hard to explain. I could easily see one as second vehicle though.

hell yeah man I test drove a 4RUNNER about a month ago and was thinking about trading in my IS! But I donít need the space especially right now with only 1 kid. Love my IS but itís like you said every time I see a modded 4Runner I wish I had one. Maybe once the family grows
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Old 02-14-19, 11:18 PM
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i ignored all european cars even though i wanted one, for maintenance/reliability issues. only car i was debating between the is200t was the q50 3.0 turbo.

the car drove great, power was amazing. but i really don't need all that power. and interior seemed cheap to me, like a only slightly better maxima. the cockpit feel of the IS feels much nicer.
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Old 02-17-19, 06:58 AM
  #15  
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Prior to picking my 2014 IS350 f-sport I considered and test drove the following:
1. Lexus GS350 f-sport - great vehicle, ventilated seats, memory seating and other tech. I dont care about android or apple car play (I like to drive and feel cars). Interior leg room was NOT much more than the IS. However I preferred the IS styling.
2. Audi A4/S4 - sexy vehicle looks wise. However I didnt want another turbo vehicle. And I didnt trust long term reliability.
3. Acura TLX - I wanted to like this car but the number one turn off was the lack of exhaust at that time. Honda had a 2 step forward 1 step backwards mentality. Not convinced of that 9 speed transmission nor a conventional gear shifter.

Last edited by GibbsLexus; 02-17-19 at 10:35 AM.
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