New LX Owner - What's Up Guys!

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Sep 13, 2013
Bay Area, CA
Ich fahre ein japanisches auto? :eek:

Hoo-boy, what have I done?!

Hey guys and gals, just picked up a 2002 LX470 and want to say hi! I'm Chad, this is the first Japanese car I've owned in years, the only other one was my first car, a MkIII Supra. Everything else has been European, mostly BMWs but with a some other things as well including Mercedes, Audis (never again!!!), Jaguars, and a few P38 Range Rovers and a Series I Disco. Point being, it may take a bit for me to get used to the Japanese way of doing things, which I can already see is rather different than my Bimmers. I do all my own regular maintenance and a decent amount of my own repairs. Looking forward to learning about this truck and contributing back to the forum.

I'm in the valley east of the Bay Area, love to meet some of you guys and happy to provide space to do some work when I have time. I've got cold beers and an air compressor so that's a good start. :D The LX will mostly be on mommy duty hauling my 2 year old daughters around, and Mrs Phantom has already ingrained in their heads it's ”mommas twuck", but it will also be the family boat hauler and I'd love to go on some trails like o did with the Range Rovers.

Enough about me. Let's get to the important stuff. It's an 02 LX with 151k on it. Have had it a little over a month. 2 owner car, always dealer maintained (for better or worse) except fluids. I haven't done anything yet except the oil, will be doing diffs, AHC, and brake fluids soon. So far it seems solid mechanically with the exception of two things I've noticed.

1. Front wheels seem to both track together well, but feel disconnected from the steering wheel like they're dancing a little as we drive. Tie rods seem fine, maybe some play in the column or a worn rack.... Hope not.

2. Feels like the rear axle carrier has some play and shifts around a bit fore/aft. Contributes to the stupid drive line clunk.

So, how's that for a long-ass introduction? How about a pic!

Thanks Fitz. It's awfully quiet in here......
Weekends are like that. Hang on for a few days.
Welcome mate. Sure you will enjoy the car.
Welcome. Nice looking LX. You're gonna love it!!!
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I'm a new owner too, but I've found out drive line clunk=grease the axles, might take a couple rounds before it goes away for good.

Yup. Just bought a lx myself. Second Hundy. Research driveline clunk. Grease the slip yokes on your driveshafts. It is generally that simple. Congrats on the hundy.
Thanks guys.

I should've mentioned I took it my local Lexus dealer to get an official bill of health and to check on the noise. I did have them grease it which didn't change anything. They, of course, wanted to replace the drive shaft. I don't have a relationship with any Japanese indies yet, and I don't trust dealerships in the least, so I guess I'll lube it some myself and see if it helps. I feel it over low speed bumps as well which is what makes it feel like the rear axle is shifting.

Road trip to British Columbia. Picture on Vancouver Island and the Victoria ferry. About a thousand mile drive, other than bankrupting me in gas it's been a great road trip vehicle.

PS, speaking of gas, I'm good at anticipating and drive pretty smoothly, and almost always beat the EPA guestimates by a good 7-10%+ in my European cars while cruising much faster. So far I've yet to break the EPA estimate even driving 300 miles straight exclusively on freeways at only 70. Fresh oil and clean air filter. Guessing the precat O2s could use a change. Any other real common things to do on these models?




I have a 2002 Cruiser. I think most people here will tell youv the EPA estimates for these are optimistic at best and a joke with any kind of a load or above 2000-2250 rpm or about 60 mph
Disappointing. I was really hoping for 16-18 on straight 100% freeway tanks.

Oh well, c'est la vie.
16-17 is reasonable and very attainable on a stock 100-series cruiser @ 70-72 MPH on relatively flat roads and low altitudes. FYI: The O2 sensors will fade at about 125k and beyond. They have a fairly wide range of tolerance so you may want to go ahead and swap with a set of Denso aftermarkets. Clean the throttle body and mass air flow sensor. Check air filter and tire pressure.
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Welcome and nice LX! If you can manage to keep your speed down on the highway I have found that to be key to getting the best mileage. I try to drive 60 when possible.
Disappointing. I was really hoping for 16-18 on straight 100% freeway tanks.

Oh well, c'est la vie.
I do a Boise to SF Peninsula trip 4-5 times a year, ~650 miles one way. MPG ranges from 15 to 16... that's at 80+ mph in Nevada.


Yeah, I was initially thinking O2 may be failing. I'd be very happy with 17 @ 80.

14 @ 70, on the other hand, is pretty disappointing.
Hi there and welcome. I'm in the south bay here in Mountain View. Would love to get together some time.

Yeah, I was initially thinking O2 may be failing. I'd be very happy with 17 @ 80.

14 @ 70, on the other hand, is pretty disappointing.

17MPG @ 80MPH is a pipe dream. Not going to happen in a 100-series cruiser.

17MPG @ 70MPH should be about right for a benchmark and hitting that will depend on terrain and elevation changes.
I average 17.6 mpg on a 130 mile trip between Anchorage and Seward.
My LC is a stock 1998 model and I set the cruise control on 74 mph.
I have stock size tires @ 38 psi and run premium gas.

I think the trick to getting decent fuel economy in a heavy vehicle is maintaining your inertia. Accelerating a 6000 lb truck is what uses all the fuel. Once you are up to speed, the cruising is relatively efficient. If you set the cruise control and leave it, the fuel economy will be a lot better than if you are stopping and starting, or accelerating to pass other vehicles, etc.. Maintaining inertia is the key.

With regard to the weird-feeling front end: get a professional alignment and have all of your tires balanced. These vehicles are very sensitive to alignment and tire balance.

Also- get it up on a lift and check the ball joints on the front upper and lower control arms. I also thought my rear axle carrier had some play, but it turned out to be the ball joints on the front Lower Control Arms.

Replaced the LCA ball joints, sway bar bushings, and shock absorber bushings, and everything feels a lot tighter now.

Dont worry about the driveline 'clunk': just grease the driveshafts and go.
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