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2nd gen vs 3rd gen - Comfort & Quality

Old 01-02-19, 12:24 PM
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HeroDanny
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Arrow 2nd gen vs 3rd gen - Comfort & Quality

Hi everyone, I'm heavily considering buying a RX350. My first reaction is to go and get a newer 3rd generation RX. But the lowest cost I could find on a decent example was roughly $13,000 now I can afford that no problem, but I cannot help myself but notice that the 2nd gens are as low as $6,000 for a good clean example.

I even heard some people said the 2nd generation had better comfort and quality. I commute 2 hours every day, 5 days a week (over 40 hours a month in my car) and I spend about 5 minutes a week actually looking at my car from the outside lol so comfort is by far the most important thing to me. Now I can justify spending the $7,000 extra on a 3rd gen but it is becoming a harder sell for me when I hear from some people that the 2nd actually was a better quality vehicle.

There are only 2 things I don't like about the 2nd generation, the first being the gauge cluster with those stupid circles, and the second the rear taillights being all angry. Both of these things are things I can live with though. As long as I can pull a trailer for my dirt bikes on the weekend I am happy.

As someone who drives a lot and longs for some luxury comfort, please give me some advice! Thank you!!
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Old 01-03-19, 07:48 AM
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So on my way home I stopped at a local dealer that had a 2nd gen and sat in it, I didn't opt for the test drive because I didn't want the hard credit inquiry on my record at this moment and I was also not trying to be late to get home. Anyway, it was a decent car but wasn't in the right color so I won't be buying it either way, the interior felt nice but i'm still unsure if I would rather a 2nd or a 3rd. I don't really like the super old fashioned radio system... I have yet to even sit in a 3rd so that will be next.
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Old 01-03-19, 01:25 PM
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The biggest thing for me is the radio. I have a second Gen rx and not having the ability to play music from my phone via Bluetooth is frustrating. Other than that I love the car. Really love it. Personally like the looks of the 2nd Gen more than the 3rd. Another thing to consider is which engine you want if you look at second Gen, but I would suggest getting an 07 or 08 or 09 as they have an updated screen (more colors and resolution) as well as little refinements like chrome door handles on the outside.
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Old 01-05-19, 01:32 PM
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Here is some info that might be of some benefit to the OP. I have owned gen. 1,2,3. I currently own an 04 an a 15. Both have been very reliable. (the 15 should be at this point) Both are comfortable. I do think the 15 has a bit more space both cargo and seating. Not much. ( may just be perception) If it were me, it would come down to how much I had to spend. I would not hesitate to get a second gen as I think the aesthetics still hold up well. Meaning, good looking vehicle. You certainly can get a lot more tech in the gen 3 if that is important. I really can't say that one is more comfortable that the other. Both ride well.
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Old 01-06-19, 09:37 AM
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I have a Gen 2 330 and my co-worker just bought the new 4th gen 450HL and let me test drive it. While it's not really what you're trying to compare, what I wanted to bring up is comfort and quality to me says relatively the same with Lexus throughout the years. Both are very comfortable and the feel of "you get what you pay for" is there. What I do notice that changes over time is ergonomics and technology. The newer cars are becoming more spacious and the layout being more friendly to the driver now that things are becoming more "digital" and less "hands on". The 450's driver seat is more relaxed and wider compared to my 330.

Another user mentioned budget as a key factor and I support that 100%, any Lexus granted it is in good shape, will be cozy.
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Old 01-07-19, 11:49 AM
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Thanks guys! I'm still going back and forth on what I want to spend. I can afford to buy a new RX, but I'm not really about spending all my savings on a new car, I'd rather own pre-owned and save the depreciation.

I still have my RAV4, was hoping to sell it by spring time. I'm hoping to get at least $9,000 for it. My plan is to sell the RAV4 and then pony up $6,000 and get a decent lexus. So about $15,000 is my budget. However, if I could somehow unload my RAV4 and get a RX350 without spending any money (going with a 2nd gen) then that would be pretty awesome too.
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Old 01-07-19, 12:52 PM
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Originally Posted by HeroDanny View Post
Thanks guys! I'm still going back and forth on what I want to spend. I can afford to buy a new RX, but I'm not really about spending all my savings on a new car, I'd rather own pre-owned and save the depreciation.

I still have my RAV4, was hoping to sell it by spring time. I'm hoping to get at least $9,000 for it. My plan is to sell the RAV4 and then pony up $6,000 and get a decent lexus. So about $15,000 is my budget. However, if I could somehow unload my RAV4 and get a RX350 without spending any money (going with a 2nd gen) then that would be pretty awesome too.
as a reference, my father bought a 2008 rx400h with about 115k miles in september for just over $9000 in good condition, 1 owner vehicle. I bought a 2008 rx400h with 135k miles in september for ~$6000, with a fair share of dents and dings, but also a 1 owner vehicle. I don't think the rx400h prices are that far off the rx350 prices, and my father and I both bought our cars in Massachusetts, so pricing should be similar. Happy to show you mine if you want to sit in and drive a 2nd gen depending where you are in MA.
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Old 01-08-19, 08:15 PM
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2nd Gen RX because I own one obviously. You can't go wrong with a 2nd Gen. Very reliable, easy to maintain, most routine service can be done at home or by any independent shop. Parts are cheap and are shared with the 1st gen 2001-2007 Toyota Highlander so oil filters, air filters, etc are interchangeable. From browsing these forums, it seems as if the 2nd Gen were overbuilt compared to the newer 3rd and 4th Gen RX, which makes sense because they had fewer electronics.
If there's any more reason why you should buy a 2nd Gen RX, the early model RX330 have stopped depreciating and seem to be holding there values at between $5000-8000 regardless of mileage. If you can buy one for those prices, you can probably drive it for 2 years and put 20-40k miles on it and sell it for exactly the same amount $$ that you bought it for.
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Old 01-11-19, 07:09 PM
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I would recommend the 3rd Gen if you have the budget. Most of the kinks are sorted out like the Oil cooler hose issues and its more refined. If you are driving that much once a week I would reconsider getting a V6 SUV. my 2nd Gen averages 19MPG.
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Old 01-12-19, 12:36 AM
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Originally Posted by 350rx View Post
I would recommend the 3rd Gen if you have the budget. Most of the kinks are sorted out like the Oil cooler hose issues and its more refined. If you are driving that much once a week I would reconsider getting a V6 SUV. my 2nd Gen averages 19MPG.
rx400h/rx450h are good options.
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