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Used automobile shopping guide: Lexus SC430

Marmite comes in many forms, including this, a Lexus SC430 of 2001 to 2009.

To many folk, it’s an nauseous thing strangled during birth by awkward doing and a lumpy ride, done crisp by run-flat tyres. Changes to a cessation in 2002 and 2004 softened things though sand sticks and it stranded generally good to this wannabe choice to a Mercedes-Benz SL.

Click here to see used Lexus SC for sale on PistonHeads

Today, a SC is still no looker though it is opposite from a flock and on paper it has a kind of selection we’ll shortly be drooling over in engine museums: a naturally aspirated 282bhp 4.3-litre V8 pushing a behind wheels by a five-speed involuntary gearbox, double-wishbone cessation and a folding aluminium roof. (No, it’s not broken. It unequivocally does take 25sec to do a thing.)

The 2+2 cabin is a gadget-lover’s bliss and, this being a Lexus, we won’t have to worry about any of it not working. The meridian control complement can clarity either a roof is open or closed, as good as a speed a automobile is travelling during and a ambient temperature, and automatically approach cold or comfortable atmosphere as necessary. There’s a knockout Mark Levinson sound system, powered and exhilarated seats, electrically tractable steering mainstay and a touchscreen sat-nav.

Obviously, a touchscreen complement is severely antiquated though cartronics.co.uk can barter in a state-of-the-art one that’ll speak to a Mark Levinson song centre for £2200. Pay a small some-more and they’ll handle in a reversing camera. It all fits snugly into a strange space.

The cabin is embellished in leather and those doorway and fascia cappings are genuine wood, made and lacquered with a assistance of low-pitched instrument makers Yamaha. Everything is finished and screwed together beautifully, qualities that offer today’s used SCs really well.

Prices start during around £3000 for a 2002 automobile with 110,000 miles. If it’s a late 2002 model, there’s a possibility it has a tweaked cessation that brought improvements to a ride, doing and refinement. Still not satisfied, Lexus combined new dampers and tuned a framework in late 2004. The outcome was a some-more absorbent ride, associated to crook handling. These mid-life cars start during around £7500. In 2005, a SC was softly facelifted with revised bumpers and redesigned 18in amalgamate wheels.

SC owners are constant and refined so you’ll find a lot of loving cars with only one or dual former keepers, full Lexus histories and pretty low mileages. Even a youngest cars are now 9 years old, so design some wear-and-tear-related issues. However, a initial are as aged as 17. On these, check for underbody rust, clonky suspension, justification of timing belt and H2O siphon replacement, healthy liquid levels and a well-spoken gearbox. At all ages, oxygen sensors and a tyre vigour monitoring complement are diseased points. Still wish one? Good – Marmite’s utterly nice, once we get used to it. 

Click here to see used Lexus SC for sale on PistonHeads

An expert’s perspective

Lee Massey, owner: “I’m a former Lexus technician and have owned dual SC430s, including my stream car, a 2004/04 with 80,000 miles. we remember a SC430 from my Lexus days as being arguable and good built and my used ones haven’t given me any trouble. If we like wafting about in something absolute and opposite that isn’t going to give we excited nights worrying about correct bills, it’s tough to beat.”

Buyer beware…

ENGINE – Some conduct gasket failures have been available due to really low coolant levels. Check a condition of a reduce radiator, that can trickle into a gearbox oil cooler. Likewise, liquid from a gearbox can trickle into a coolant. The oxygen sensor in a empty complement can fail. Check a starter engine works fine given it’s located inconveniently underneath a estuary manifold, that has to be private to reinstate it. The effluvium bin is there, too, and these can fail, expensively. Timing belt change is each 100,000 miles. Water siphon should be altered during a same time given it’s a diseased spot, as is a centre belt tensioner.

GEARBOX – It should be really smooth. If juddery, think coolant contamination. Transmission liquid should be altered each 45,000 miles.

WHEELS, BRAKES AND SUSPENSION – Check for ragged tip cessation arms during a behind and ragged front circle bearings. If a float on early cars is rough, think a front control arm bushes. Listen for clunks from here too. Steel tools in a aluminium cessation can rot. Check a stop pipes’ condition. Ensure a tyre vigour monitoring complement works. Some owners invalidate it as a valves destroy though it’s an MOT issue. Steering circle sound when branch could be a turn wire (an costly repair).

BODY – Check for underbody corrosion, generally during a behind around a behind spindle and subframe. 

FOLDING HARD-TOP – Position sensors can destroy with miss of use. Check for leaks caused by perished seals and for roof corrosion.

INTERIOR – Ensure a song complement is fault-free: subwoofer and doorway speakers can fail.

Also value meaningful

Amazingly, we can still buy an authorized used SC430 from Lexus. At time of writing, there were seven, trimming from £10,990 to £16,995.

How many to spend

£2750-£3500 – A cluster of high-mileage (120k) 2002- reg cars with prejudiced use histories.

£4995-£6995 – Mix of 2002-2003 cars with 100k miles in good condition, many with full use histories and few prior owners.

£7000-£8995 – Mainly 2004-2005 cars with around 75k miles. £9000-£10,995 Mostly 2005-2007 cars, circa 70k miles.

£11,000-£13,995 – More 2007 cars with around 50k miles. £14,000-£16,995 The best late-plate cars. 

One we found – Lexus SC430, 2004/54, 70K MILES, £7995

This SC has full Lexus use history, including new timing belt replacement. It’s a mid-2004 indication with a revised cessation set-up designed to heal a model’s controversial float and handling. Autocar judged a changes to be successful.

Click here to see used Lexus SC for sale on PistonHeads

John Evans 

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Click here to see used Lexus SC for sale on PistonHeads

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