Does buying a used V8-powered Lexus LS/GS sedan in India make sense?

I'm a big fan of Lexus (thanks to the LFA) & I've found these sedans from the late '90s and early 2000s up for sale between Rs 5-8 lakh.

BHPian GreasyCarb55 recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

I've been scrolling around a few websites and seeing these Lexus GS and LS sedans with V8s from the late 90s and early 2000s pop up for sale between 5-8 lakh.

I know the Lexus/Toyota V8s are mechanically indestructible as they've not only seen used in luxury sedans and SUVs but also in heavy-duty applications like pickup trucks and they just keep chugging along for hundreds of thousands of kilometres without any major issues.

As a big fan of Lexus (mostly thanks to the LFA), picking up arguably the best V8 sedans ever built for the price of a new Baleno is REALLY tempting for someone like me. (This will not be my primary car).

So are they a good idea or should I just use the money for something else?

Here's what GTO had to say about the matter:

There's a reason why old luxury cars are priced on par with new hatchbacks. Because no one wants to buy them. The parts of any car have a finite life - including Lexus - and any comparisons to high mileage cars from the USA isn't futile, because our driving conditions + average speeds + small commutes + potholed roads are completely different.

Buying an old CBU like this is a big no-no. You'll be spending a lot of time in its upkeep and will have to source parts yourself. Different matter if you were considering a body-on-frame diesel SUV like the Land Cruiser or Pajero / Montero. Those are still doable, although I wouldn't recommend anyone buying a 10+ year car under any circumstances.

These old Lexus cars will be more reliable than a Mercedes or BMW of similar vintage for sure. But that's not saying much. It's going to cause you a lot of headaches.


Here's what BHPian GaryTSI had to say about the matter:

It is a subjective answer but it really comes down to your application and your environmental factors.

If you live in the NCR or any other major metro city, then I wouldn't suggest owning one simply because of the fuel and space constraints. Also, the NGT ban is something that is currently only applicable in the NCR but I fear that other major cities might adopt the same system which will render the idea of an old car to be useless.

If you already own a daily driver and a weekend/secondary car then it is still feasible to look for them but please do not buy an old Lexus as a primary car under the pretext of it being indestructible.

One more thing I would like to add is while they are cheap and reliable, their spares and servicing are going to be the polar opposite. The best chance is to import parts from their Japanese Toyota equivalent like the Celsior and Aristo but even then it's a painstaking process requiring a ton of money and time.

They are brilliant cars and there are plenty of examples to prove how great they are in terms of comfort (champagne glasses on the bonnet advertisement) and reliability (Matt Farah's million-mile LS400). The 1UZ on the 1st and 2nd gen are beautiful and even the LS430 which got the 3UZ has stood the test of time.

I was happy to once drive a 2nd gen LS400 around the block in Dehradun and there was nothing else like it, the seats were literal cushions and the V8 was silky smooth. If you really want to buy one, just ensure you have the money and patience to keep it going.

Here's what BHPian landcruiser123 had to say about the matter:

Okay as a project car if you're handy with tools and/or know trusted mechanics. If none of the two applies to you, don't waste your time.

That 20-year Lexus can't be your primary car.

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