2003 LEXUS IS 300 4DR CAR

Used Car - 2003 Lexus IS 300 4dr Car in Fort Worth, Tx

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  • 2003 LEXUS IS 300 4DR CAR  - Photo 1
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    About This 2003 Lexus IS 300 4dr Car
    Vehicle Location:
    Fort Worth, Tx
    IS 300
    4dr Car
    Call For Price
    Exterior Color:
     Silver (Silver)
    Interior Color:
     Black (Black)
    Rear Wheel Drive
    Fuel Type:
    Five Door
    Stock Number:

    Fuel Economy Estimates
    City MPG
    Miles Per Gallon
    Highway MPG
    Combined MPG: 22
    Estimated Monthly Fuel Cost: $107.39*
    *Based on $1.89 per gallon and 15k miles per year.
    Actual costs may vary.
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    Seller's Description and Comments:

    Located at Euro-American Motorcars in Fort Worth, Tx.  Call Euro-American Motorcars today at 817-336-7000 for more information about this vehicle.

    Vehicle Options:

    • 3.0l (183) Dohc Efi 24-valve I6 W/aluminum Head-inc: Continuously Variable Valve Timing W/intelligence (vvt-i)
    • Rear Wheel Drive
    • Electronically Controlled Ignition W/(2) Know Sensors (d-tdi)
    • 2-stage Acoustic Control Induction System (acis)
    • Electronic Throttle Control System W/intelligence (etcs-i)
    • Automatic Transmission Oil Cooler
    • 4-wheel Independent Double Wishbone Suspension
    • Front/rear Stabilizer Bar
    • P215/45zr17 Summer Performance Tires
    • Full-size Spare Tire W/alloy Wheel
    • Speed-sensitive Pwr Rack & Pinion Steering
    • 4-wheel Pwr Ventilated Front/solid Rear Disc Brakes W/electronic Brake Force Distribution (ebd)
    • Brake Assist
    • 17.5 Gallon Fuel Tank
    • Stainless Steel Exhaust Pipe W/chrome Tip
    • Tool Kit
    • Color-keyed Front/rear Bumpers
    • Color-keyed Front Airdam W/low Grille
    • Front Grille W/metallic Finish
    • High-intensity Discharge (hid) Headlamps W/automatic On/off Feature
    • Solar-ray Tinted Windows W/windshield Sunband
    • Color-keyed Heated Pwr Mirrors W/driver-side Auto-dimming Feature
    • Variable-intermittent Windshield Wipers W/mist Control
    • Front Bucket Seats
    • Rear Seat Pass Through
    • Dual Front Cup Holders
    • Covered Center Console Storage Box
    • Cut Pile Carpeting
    • Carpeted Floor Mats
    • Stainless Steel Scuff Plates
    • Leather-wrapped 3-spoke Tilt Steering Wheel
    • Pwr Windows-inc: Driver One-touch Up/down Feature
    • Pinch Protection
    • Retained Accessory Pwr
    • Pwr Door Locks-inc: Anti Lock-out
    • Driver 2-turn Unlock Feature
    • Vehicle Theft Deterrent System W/engine Immobilizer
    • Chronograph-style Instrumentation-inc: 160-mph Speedometer
    • Coolant Temperature
    • Battery Voltage
    • Fuel Consumption
    • Battery Level
    • Tachometer
    • Warning Lights-inc: Battery
    • Oil Level
    • Engine
    • Oil Pressure
    • Low Fuel
    • Tire Slippage
    • Cruise Control
    • Automatic Climate Control System W/dust/pollen Filter
    • Heavy Duty Rear Window Defogger W/timer
    • Etr Am/fm Stereo-inc: In-dash 6-cd Changer
    • Auto-reverse Cassette
    • 240-watts Amplifier
    • (8) Speakers
    • Roof-mounted Radio Antenna W/fm Diversity System
    • Console-mounted Dual Rear Cup Holders
    • Cigarette Lighter & Front/rear Ash Trays
    • Digital Clock W/exterior Temperature Gauge
    • Brushed Aluminum Sports Pedals
    • Electrochromic Auto-dimming Rearview Mirror W/compass
    • Driver/front Passenger Visor Vanity Mirrors
    • Lighting-inc: Door Courtesy
    • Glove Box
    • Trunk
    • Dome
    • Front Map
    • Chrome Shift Knob
    • Assist Grips-inc: (1) Front
    • (2) Rear
    • Front Seatback Pockets
    • Coat Hooks
    • Driver & Front Passenger Airbags (srs)
    • Front Side Curtain Airbags (srs)
    • Front Seat-mounted Side-impact Airbags (srs)
    • 3-point Seat Belts In All Seating Positions W/front Force-limiting Pretensioners
    • Height Adjustable Shoulder Belts
    • Child Seat Tether Anchors In All Passenger Positions
    • Energy-absorbing Soft Upper Headliner & Pillars
    • Energy-absorbing Door & Body Construction
    • Collapsible Steering Column
    • Front/rear Side-impact Door Beams
    • Front/rear Crumple Zones
    • First Aid Kit

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    Additional Photos of this Lexus IS 300

    Lexus IS 300 4dr Car - Photo 1 (click to enlarge)Lexus IS 300 4dr Car - Photo 2 (click to enlarge)

    2003 Lexus IS 300 Review

    This car review is specific to this model, not the actual vehicle for sale.
    2003 Lexus IS 300
    The driver's Lexus.


    The IS 300 is the rogue of the Lexus family, a compact four-door sedan combining sassy looks and snappy performance with the superior quality control usually associated with the Lexus name.


    The IS 300 is priced nearly the same as the more conservative Lexus ES 300, but is targeted toward a younger audience. While the ES 300 uses a V6 and front-wheel drive, the IS 300 uses an inline-6 and rear-wheel drive. The ES is smooth and sophisticated; the IS is hip and aggressive. In fact, with rear-wheel drive, best-in-class horsepower, and the road-hugging handling of a German touring car, the IS 300 offers a compelling alternative to the benchmark BMW 3 Series.


    The IS 300's high-tech 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder engine is renowned for its smoothness. It produces 215 horsepower on recommended 91-octane fuel. The E-shift five-speed automatic transmission shifts automatically or manually via buttons on the steering wheel.


    Last year, Lexus added the SportCross, a '4+1-door body style' to the IS 300 family. The company jumps through hoops to avoid the words 'five-door' or 'hatchback' or anything else that would suggest practical economy, but it does add practicality. Lexus says the SportCross appeals to a much younger crowd than even the sedan; we figure that means active-lifestyle jocks in addition to well-heeled geeks and gearheads. (We pride ourselves as gearheads, but geeks is probably a more accurate label.) Fortunately, the SportCross isn't as awkward as its tag. In fact, it is anything but awkward.


    For 2003, the Lexus IS 300 offers new standard and optional wheel designs, including a new 16-inch aluminum alloy wheel with 205/55R16 all-season tires. All-season tires will be available for other models in addition to the summer performance tires. Otherwise the rogue Lexus remains unchanged from last year.




    The Lexus IS 300 sedan with the five-speed E-shift automatic ($30,805) comes standard with four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS) with electronic brake distribution (EBD), side-curtain air bags, halogen foglamps, high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights, five-spoke alloy wheels (redesigned for 2003), traction control, a premium eight-speaker (nine in SportCross) audio system with cassette and in-dash six-disc CD player, plus all the power-oriented paraphernalia of a luxury car: automatic climate system, cruise control, power windows and door locks, auto-dimming rearview and driver's sideview mirrors, heated external mirrors, remote entry, security system and more.


    The SportCross ($32,305) comes with the same high level of standard equipment, but features slightly wider rear tires on half-inch wider rims, and a sturdy rear window washer/wiper.


    The IS 300 sedan is also available with a five-speed manual ($29,435). It comes with a sport-tuned suspension and all the same standard stuff. Drivers, you're in luck: More sport for less money. Driver jocks are not so lucky, however, since the five-speed doesn't come in the SportCross body style.


    Black or ivory leather seats with full power adjustment add $2105 to the sedan, $2145 to the SportCross. A leather/Ecsaine (suede-like) combination costs $1805 in the sedan and $1845 in the SportCross. Other major options include DVD GPS voice navigation ($2000), power moonroof ($500), heated front seats ($440), Vehicle Skid Control ($350), and a limited slip differential ($390).




    The Lexus IS 300 looks like a sports sedan with short front and rear overhangs. Its wheels are pushed out toward the corners of the car.


    Its wedge-shaped form has a conspicuously low prow, while a bulge down the center of the hood suggests power, especially from the driver's seat. Creased lines on the hood flow down steeply from raked A-pillars to a familial trapezoidal grille, ringed with chrome and bordered by jewel-like HID headlamp clusters. Round halogen foglights are shielded within the air dam behind trapezoidal composite lenses.


    In the rear, round red taillights peer out of contoured bezels behind aerodynamic clear covers. The bezels are smoked gray on dark-colored cars, and chromed with light colors.


    The three rear windows on each side of the SportCross look a bit odd, the back two crowded, as if they're an unsolved design problem. Behind the rear door window there's a non-opening triangular pane that looks like an old-style vent window, and behind that there's another one shaped like a triangle/trapezoid, which neither looks in nor out on anything, and is outlined by a thick black band inside the glass where it fits against the car's interior.


    Lexus calls the SportCross 'more than a sedan but less than a full wagon' (that's the cross), and adds that 'the new silhouette admittedly places unique design ahead of maximum utility.' This priority leaves room for a gaping hole in the concept: There is no standard roof rack, nor even an available one, nor even any rain gutters to attach an aftermarket rack; and the radio antenna, rising from the center rear of the roof, would get in the way anyhow. Lexus says the SportCross will appeal to mountain bikers, and the press kit includes a photo of a SportCross with a bike squeezed in the back to prove it, but we don't think so. The bike has whitewall tires, which suggests how much Lexus knows about mountain bikers. They go everywhere in pairs; their bikes are perpetually caked in mud. They need roof racks.




    The Lexus IS 300 cockpit reflects an attempt at contemporary, driver-oriented styling. Graphite-tinged plastics and machined metallic finishes set the theme. Drilled aluminum pedals, a polished metal shift ball, a notched shift gate rimmed by chrome, and doorsills covered with stainless steel scuff plates studded with rubber cleats add a racy, high-tech image. A graphite plate on the driver-side door panel surrounds rocker toggles that power the windows, door locks and both exterior mirrors.


    The instrument panel includes a round analog speedometer inset with three smaller gauges for temperature, volts and instant fuel mileage. The whole cluster is designed to resemble a sports chronograph wristwatch, and in its attempt to be cute, cool, clever, unique, whatever, it fails the no-nonsense test: The instant fuel gauge is too small to be useful, as a tiny needle flips in a tiny semicircle between 0 and 80 mpg. The watch-face cluster stands between a half-moon tachometer on the left, whose clarity is compromised by the clutter of the faux chronograph, and quarter-circle fuel gauge to the right, above a digital display for gear selection and trip odometer.


    The power bucket seats felt a bit hard and wide at first, but we found adequate lateral support when we drove our SportCross hard through the curves, and the suede-like/cloth-like Ecsaine surface was good and grippy. We were less than impressed by our test model's $1845 Leather/Ecsaine interior trim. Earlier we described it as suede-like, but it could just as easily be considered cloth-like. Another $300 for the full leather seems like a bargain (which is not to say that $2145 for leather and power seats is a bargain).


    A very attractive, stitched leather three-spoke steering wheel (spokes at 3, 9 and 6 o'clock) tilts manually. Pairs of buttons on both the left and right spokes enable the driver to shift up or down one gear at a time without removing his or her hands from the wheel. The front button downshifts with the thumb and the back button upshifts with the middle finger. The vents and pods for audio and climate controls drop down from the center of the dash to the console.


    The sedan's firm rear bench will accommodate three in a pinch, and has a fold-down armrest that conceals a small pass-through portal to the trunk.


    With its 60/40 split rear seat backs folded, the SportCross offers 21.8 cubic feet of cargo space, more than twice as much as the trunk of the sedan. The wheel wells intrude quite a bit into the SportCross cargo area, making the space hourglass-shaped, which reduces its practical carrying capacity.




    Driving Impression
    Nobuaki Katayama, the chief engineer for the Lexus IS 300, is a passionate racing fan who admits that his personal driving style is dynamic; he likes to pitch his car. So he designed the chassis and suspension of the rear-wheel-drive IS 300 to accommodate such a style. He did a great job. We were impressed by the agility of the E-shift sedan, and the SportCross corners even better, thanks to its slightly more balanced weight distribution (53/47 versus 54/46) and wider rear tires. But the five-speed sedan, with its stiffer sport suspension, should corner best of all.


    Katayama started by mounting the engine (and battery) as far rearward as possible. The double-wishbone independent suspension was specifically designed to resist roll in corners and front-end dive under hard braking, and it thoroughly succeeds. Meanwhile, the engine-speed-sensitive, power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering provides precise control with excellent feedback.


    But it was the car's balance that downright dazzled us. We drove it very aggressively through our favorite remote twisty section in the wet, and we kept trying and trying to get the tail to hang out, but the IS 300 resolutely refused to oversteer. The Bridgestone Potenza summer radials did a great job gripping corners in the wet. Our SportCross was not equipped with the optional Vehicle Skid Control, but it did not seem to need it, and that's saying a whole lot. (Still, for $350, the VSC option remains a steal. Think fail-safe. Think ice.)


    The SportCross handled better in the wet than the front-wheel-drive Acura TL-S did in the dry. We found the IS 300 more fun to drive than a lot of sports cars.


    We loved using the steering-wheel buttons to change gars, but the E-shift transmission will override some of your decisions. Drive into a corner hard, begin clicking the button on the steering wheel to downshift, and often it won't respond. It's designed to prevent abuse to the transmission and/or over-revving, but it's set way too conservatively; one time it wouldn't even downshift for us at a modest 3800 rpm. Sometimes, when accelerating out of a curve, it even leaves you below the powerband, which is reasonably broad. Also, it won't do short-shifts when you want heavy throttle at low rpm. Bottom line: If you really want to shift for yourself, get the sedan with the manual transmission.


    Turning to the ride and brakes, the IS 300 gets great again. The ride presented remarkable equanimity, which is to say it felt the same over every kind of surface. On high-speed ripples it was firm and steady; on low-speed bumps, firm and never harsh. Out on the freeway, it delivered a nap-inducing smoothness.


    And the brakes (big ventilated discs in front and solid discs in back) were always there. The anti-dive suspension design works. We abused the brakes during our longest cornering session and they never faded. We dove into rain-slicked second-gear turns too fast and too late, relying on the anti-lock system to save us; and it did, with rock-steadiness and without protest.


    The engine, using continuously variable valve timing, delivers keen acceleration, but the three models are not equal. The five-speed is quickest, the E-Shift sedan next, and SportCross the slowest because it's the heaviest. According to Lexus, 0 to 60 mph acceleration times are 6.8, 7.3, and 7.4 seconds respectively, and quarter-mile times are 15.1, 15.3, and 15.6. Any one of them is considerably quicker than a Lexus ES 300.


    We were impressed by the performance of the traction control with optional limited-slip differential. The rear wheels will slip on wet pavement, when accelerating from an uphill stop sign for example, but pound the throttle and the limited-slip kicks in and prevents the wheels from spinning any more.




    The Lexus IS 300 sedan offers ride, handling, power, brakes, comfort and price comparable to the BMW 3 Series and other sports sedans. The IS 300 SportCross is an excellent concept with tremendous promise. If it had an available roof rack and either a manual gearbox or sportier programming of the auto/manual transmission, it would fulfill that promise. In both cases, we were particularly impressed with the braking and handling.


    Model Lineup
    IS 300 5-speed manual ($29,435); IS 300 automatic ($30,805); IS 300 SportCross ($30,805).


    Assembled In
    Iwate, Japan.


    Options As Tested
    moonroof ($500); heated front seats ($440); Leather/Ecsaine Package ($1845) includes dual eight-way power seats, garage door opener; limited-slip differential ($390); cargo mat ($58).


    Model Tested
    IS 300 SportCross ($30,805).

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    Seller Information


    1818 E. Lancaster Ave.
    Fort Worth, Tx. 76103

    Email This Seller Email This Seller

    Local:   817-336-7000
    Contact: Sales Manager

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    Euro-American Motorcars

    Contact: Sales Manager

    1818 E. Lancaster Ave.
    Fort Worth, Tx. 76103

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