Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

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abonder
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Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by abonder » Fri Dec 15, 2017 12:39 am

Asking for a friend. Friend wants to move forward with purchasing a Lexus RX 350. Feels this vehicle will fit their needs. Open to new or 2-3 year-old lowish mileage options. Trying to assist in helping friend move forward. I’ve read a million new vs used Bogleheads threads and I know it’s often hard to determine the best option. It’s definitely easier to comparison shop new vehicles and I’ve had decent success email bargaining for new, widely available vehicles. Is the RX 350 specifically a vehicle that takes enough of a depreciation hit that makes buying used a good proposition. I think the things favoring buying used is that the RX350 is a reliable vehicle, it’s popular so there are lots of used models available, and it’s a luxury vehicle and it seems like luxury vehicles tend to depreciate more than non-luxury ones. I just want to hear the boglehead input on this issue. I realize in advance that there might not be a clear consensus. Thanks.

jlawrence01
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by jlawrence01 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:46 am

I purchased a Lexus Rx350 with a navigation system for my company fleet for $42k in 2010. I sold the vehicle AT AUCTION in 2013 with 105k miles for $26k. Personally, I was stunned at how much the vehicle brought. I had offered it to a company employee for $22k but he rejected that price as outrageous.

Most Lexus vehicles depreciate very slowly.

umk
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by umk » Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:53 am

DW drives RX-350 year 2012 model. We purchased it brand new, based on past experience of buying "depreciated" vehicle. Now I buy new vehicles and am planning to keep them as long as they run or until we are tired of them.

BTW, DW wanted to buy RAV4 because RX-350 was expensive. I was the one who insisted on spending that extra money since she drives to work 1 hour each way. Now she LOVES it. That alone was worth the extra money I paid. YMMV. :beer

livesoft
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by livesoft » Fri Dec 15, 2017 5:26 am

I bought pre-owned. I paid about 15% to 20% less than the initial asking price in my area where used RX-3x0 are beater cars because there are so many of them. I bargained over the phone after test driving the used car.
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GoldenFinch
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by GoldenFinch » Fri Dec 15, 2017 5:53 am

We bought an off-lease 2010 RX 350 in 2012 for 34k (17,000 miles). It still looks brand new and drives great even though it’s about eight years old. It’s the best car I’ve ever owned.

whiteprius
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by whiteprius » Fri Dec 15, 2017 7:15 am

When I purchased my first really nice car, a +$100k car, I realized that as fancy and new as the car is on the first day -- eventually it feels like a used car. Doesn't take long either, maybe six months to a year. By then it's just another car that you'll be tired of, regardless of how much you liked it when it was new. So since then I always get used middle market cars and view them as transportation. Just make sure you get a pre purchase inspection to ensure you're not being sold a lemon and if you want extra safety get an extended warranty either a certified one from the manufacturer or one from Carmax (which has good warranties I hear).

So definitely used.
Last edited by whiteprius on Fri Dec 15, 2017 7:26 am, edited 1 time in total.

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NCPE
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by NCPE » Fri Dec 15, 2017 7:25 am

We bought a Certified Pre Owned 2007 model with 30,000 miles on it in 2009 for about 25% off the best price we could find on a new model. Came with the Lexus 100,000 mile warranty which we never had to use, currently has 186,000 miles. Other than normal maintenance and having to replace a couple of the coil packs we have had zero problems.

We got the speech about how well the Lexus vehicles maintained their resale value from the dealership, they rolled her eyes when I told them the last 4 vehicles that we sold went for $200 - $300 at the local car crusher. :mrgreen:

When this one becomes non economical to repair we will crush it and probably by another one.

whiteprius
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by whiteprius » Fri Dec 15, 2017 7:48 am

jlawrence01 wrote:
Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:46 am
I purchased a Lexus Rx350 with a navigation system for my company fleet for $42k in 2010. I sold the vehicle AT AUCTION in 2013 with 105k miles for $26k. Personally, I was stunned at how much the vehicle brought. I had offered it to a company employee for $22k but he rejected that price as outrageous.

Most Lexus vehicles depreciate very slowly.
That's amazing; I almost don't believe it, unless you live in country where it's really hard to import lexuses. Not the norm for lexuses though.

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Leesbro63
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by Leesbro63 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:06 am

Did this in 2009; bought an off-lease 2006 RX. Kept it 4 years. In the end, my cost per mile was about the same as if I had bought new. Because the depreciation savings upfront wasn’t great. And I had to buy an extended warranty to be covered similar to new. And I needed tires and brakes fairly early on. I wouldn’t do it again. Went new after that.

boglegirl
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by boglegirl » Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:24 am

jlawrence01 wrote:
Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:46 am
I purchased a Lexus Rx350 with a navigation system for my company fleet for $42k in 2010. I sold the vehicle AT AUCTION in 2013 with 105k miles for $26k. Personally, I was stunned at how much the vehicle brought. I had offered it to a company employee for $22k but he rejected that price as outrageous.

Most Lexus vehicles depreciate very slowly.
Looks like I bought the wrong Lexus. :? My ES 350 lost value very quickly. Our F-150, purchased for the same price in the same year and now with 40% more miles on it, has a blue book value 50% higher than my car.
2012 ES 350 purchased for approx $41k: Today, 50k miles, KBB $16,000.
2012 F-150 purchased for approx $41k: Today, 70k miles, KBB $24,000

So I guess my advice to the OP is to buy a new F-150 or a used Lexus. 8-)

bloom2708
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by bloom2708 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:30 am

The RX styling changed in 2016. Some like the new front, some really don't like it.

Look at and drive a 2014 compared to a 2016 just to see if you like the previous gen compared to the current generation.

The RX 400h/450h brings a hybrid into the mix if you wife does a lot of in town buzzing around. A used 400h might depreciate a bit faster because some do not want hybrid technology.

I think used ES and LS models offer the best value. Sport utilities and trucks seem to hold their value better. I think it is best to set your budget and then find the lowest mileage/best condition car that meets your budget. If new will do that, then go new. If the budget is below new, then search for a lightly used one.
"We are here not to please but to provoke thoughtfulness" Unknown Boglehead

UncleBen
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by UncleBen » Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:47 am

I've been looking at 2015's partially because of the ugly grill introduced in '16 but more so because of the dash design with the info screen sticking up right in the middle of everything.

In our market the '15's seemed to have taken a decent depreciation hit, with gradual price declines in the '13's and '14's, then another bigger hit to the '12's.

The other thing I've noticed is that the majority of used Lexi(?), are showing up at no-haggle dealerships $2-$5k above Edmunds retail price. Finding a place to offer 15%-20% less than asking like Livesoft suggests is a difficult exercise.

focusedonwhatmatters
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by focusedonwhatmatters » Fri Dec 15, 2017 10:35 am

I'm on my 4th RX, always purchased new, without all the fancy bells and whistles. I keep them ideally 6 years (one was 9), and in all cases they sold privately within a week for what would work out to ~$2-3K cost of ownership per year (not including gas, oil changes, schedule maintenance, and insurance). The RX is an excellent vehicle, new or used.
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Leesbro63
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by Leesbro63 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 11:04 am

UncleBen wrote:
Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:47 am
I've been looking at 2015's partially because of the ugly grill introduced in '16 but more so because of the dash design with the info screen sticking up right in the middle of everything.

In our market the '15's seemed to have taken a decent depreciation hit, with gradual price declines in the '13's and '14's, then another bigger hit to the '12's.

The other thing I've noticed is that the majority of used Lexi(?), are showing up at no-haggle dealerships $2-$5k above Edmunds retail price. Finding a place to offer 15%-20% less than asking like Livesoft suggests is a difficult exercise.
You are really comparing apples to oranges...the prior bodystyle vehicle versus the current one. I've had both. The new vehicle is far superior to the '15 and earlier (which, by the way, where still very very good). Yeah, the front is kind of aggressive/weird/obnoxious. And yeah the screen sticks up. But it's worth getting over both of those. Everything else about the vehicle is better.

KevinIA
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by KevinIA » Fri Dec 15, 2017 11:28 am

We always find the best value with the Lexus's we buy on the 3 year old lease return. A lot of 3 year / 30 k mile leases in our area. We don't pay extra for the CPO since we don't feel we need the warranty, and we make sure it is a local car with all services completed at the Lexus dealer. Bought a ES with 33k miles, dealer already put on new tires and brakes before sale, we saved 18k over new. In every way it was like a new vehicle with minimal wear and tear, we get no satisfaction for being the only owner. We pay cash so financing is not factored in. All in cost is less for used, less sales tax at 7% in our state, plates are less expensive, insurance cheaper since it is 3 years old. The wife also doesn't feel like she can't go to the store and park close for fear of getting a ding on a brand new car.

abonder
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by abonder » Fri Dec 15, 2017 12:47 pm

Thanks for all of the feedback. It seems like the consensus is mixed but the overall feeling is that used or new can work. I seem to see a lot of 2-3 year old models around here,mostly coming off lease. It seems to me like there’s enough depreciation to at least make an argument for going used, presuming the used model checks enough boxes. I personally feel less anxious with a used vehicle...already has some scratches, don’t need to park it far from others, enjoy paying lower sales tax, excise tax, etc. I’ll try to counsel my friend accordingly. Livesoft - I kno you’ve referenced getting a good deal on this exact car buying used before. Can you expand a little more. It always seems like there’s less wiggle room with used cars and this makes the buy used argument less favorable in my view. Thanks again for the wealth of information. This forum is amazing.

livesoft
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by livesoft » Fri Dec 15, 2017 12:51 pm

See: viewtopic.php?t=137219

My opinion is that folks who pay too much don't have patience or have already anchored on a higher price. Anchor on a lower price and see what happens.

Also see: viewtopic.php?p=3113472#p3113472 for another testimonial.
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lws
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by lws » Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:16 pm

Either new or used will be fine.

abonder
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by abonder » Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:21 pm

Thanks live soft. I looked at both your posts but I thought that somewhere you had a detailed post about exactly how you negotiated for the very significant discount on your used RX 350. Do you recall that or am I confusing some posts. Thanks again for all the thoughts from everyone.

livesoft
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by livesoft » Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:27 pm

There are other posts for sure. I'm sure you can find them as quickly as I can.

I recall the details as:
Me leaving voice message: "I will buy that car if you give me a reasonable price. That's a ridiculous price. Give a reasonable and price and I will show up with my checkbook."
Salesrep leaving me a voice message: "Thanks. Here is the best I can do: $30,000."
Me leaving voice message: "I saw a similar Lexus in San Antonio where my mom lives for much less. You can look it up on the internet. I'm going there next week and may drive home in it. So please give me a great OTD price."
Salesrep leaving voice message: "OK, what would it take for you to buy this car."
Me leaving voice message: "I won't pay more than $26,800 for it plus tax."
Salesrep leaving me voice message: "OK, it's a deal."

Or something close to that.
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abonder
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by abonder » Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:40 pm

Thanks for the summary. I think being bold and undeterred by rejection is probably the key thing. I did try to search for the old post but i couldn’t quite locate what I was thinking of.

I feel like you should open a car shopping consultancy. You do the dirty work and get people good deals. I know that used cars should have more wiggle room, especially since dealers tend to pay very low prices for trade ins. There should be a lot of room for negotiations. I feel like maybe a “Livesoft’s guide to living” is in order. I’ll be the first to buy

ssquared87
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by ssquared87 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:41 pm

These are extremely reliable cars. Unless there is a very specific feature/color combo that you like, no reason not to go with a model thats 3-5 years old. I know a lot of people get fixated on 2-3 years, but 3-5 year old versions will be a decent amount cheaper and the reliability/maintenance won't be all that much worse compared to a 2-3 year old model. At least not enough of a difference compared to the initial purchase price of an older vs. newer used car.

Whatever you decide, has to be a decision you can sleep at night. I personally have no worries driving a 20 year old car to work, but everyone's risk tolerance is different and the key is to know yours, just like considering your portfolio allocation.

ncbill
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by ncbill » Fri Dec 15, 2017 2:01 pm

My almost 80-year-old in-laws love their 2015 CPO (bought last year)

It has been back to the dealer several times for software upgrades - don't know if that's an indication of a problem or simply that the previous owner never bothered.

btenny
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by btenny » Fri Dec 15, 2017 2:05 pm

OP. Be very careful out there right now buying a used car. There are huge numbers of hurricane cars that are coming out of Texas. Many of those cars were totaled as they were totally submersed in water. So the electrical systems are very suspect. But a lot of shady dealers will dry out those cars and sell them to others if they start and run OK. The gotcha is the cars may run fine for a week and then have one of computers die or other stuff die from water damage. See here for some tips to make sure your the car you select is not damaged.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/21/auto ... d-car.html
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features ... icane-cars
https://jalopnik.com/how-to-avoid-being ... 1809939987


Good Luck...

NJdad6
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by NJdad6 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 2:07 pm

Has your friend taken a test drive? They are fantastic vehicles but not for everyone. Few years ago I was planning to buy one for my wife. Went to test drive and could barely fit behind the wheel. I am well over 6 feet tall and it is the tightest fit I have seen in years. No way I could drive that car comfortably. My wife is 5'10" and also found it to be pretty confining.

Other than that they are beautiful cars. Have friends who bought new and one who bought used. They all love them. Only advice from the guy that bought used is to shop around. Local dealer's price was very inflated. Travelled a few towns over and got a significantly better deal.

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steadyeddy
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by steadyeddy » Fri Dec 15, 2017 2:08 pm

Keep in mind only the newer models have pre-collision braking, lane keep, and other driver assist technology. Not having pre-collision braking was a deal-breaker for me when shopping recently. It could save a life.

livesoft
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by livesoft » Fri Dec 15, 2017 2:40 pm

abonder wrote:
Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:40 pm
Thanks for the summary. I think being bold and undeterred by rejection is probably the key thing.
I used to submit NIH R01 grants in my former life, so I am well-experienced with rejection.
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Alexa9
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by Alexa9 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 5:16 pm

There are a few benefits to buying new that I think make it worth it:
1. Who knows how the previous driver treated the car.
2. Honda/Toyota cars retain their value very well, even luxury, for good reason, they're reliable. Don't expect a deal (unlike used German Luxury, but they're not as reliable) Is 10-20% off worth it?
3. You'll have maintenance sooner when buying used.
4. One owner cars have slightly higher resale values.
5. You can google what a great price is for a new car. Used cars require haggling. If you're good and patient it may be worth it.

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Leesbro63
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by Leesbro63 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 6:48 pm

Alexa9 wrote:
Fri Dec 15, 2017 5:16 pm
There are a few benefits to buying new that I think make it worth it:
1. Who knows how the previous driver treated the car.
2. Honda/Toyota cars retain their value very well, even luxury, for good reason, they're reliable. Don't expect a deal (unlike used German Luxury, but they're not as reliable) Is 10-20% off worth it?
3. You'll have maintenance sooner when buying used.
4. One owner cars have slightly higher resale values.
5. You can google what a great price is for a new car. Used cars require haggling. If you're good and patient it may be worth it.
+1 THIS

Hulu
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Re: Lexus RX 350 - new vs. preowned

Post by Hulu » Fri Dec 15, 2017 8:03 pm

Unless there's a really compelling reason (ev rebates, feature like automated-driving, year end give-away discounts which doesn't happen w Lexus), I'd lean towards buying a year or two old car. With a high quality inspection. The first year of depreciation plus negotiation savings can be a huge savings. Though it's more work and less choice so depends what is worth more to you.

One major caveat - depends on the market. The new and used car market are not in sync so you can take advantage of that. Ditto for sedans/minivans vs. SUV. From Jan onwards all markets suffer (but not evenly) because people don't want to go out in the cold. I'd use CarGurus and see what the market pays you to do.

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