Six Amazing Facts About the Lexus SC300
- The Lexus SC300 is the start in two major Hollywood blockbusters. The first is the Fast and the Furious spin-off, Tokyo Drift, where it was one of the souped-up cars driven about by the characters. The second is the action flick, Eagle Eye. Its role in that last one was much smaller-it was one of many vehicles destroyed by the menacing Reaper UAV near the climax of the movie.
- Bigger-engine equipped Lexus SC300s are favored in the Super GT race series-specifically in the GT500 class. These tricked-out and heavily upgraded versions of the luxury coupe were driven by former GT500 champion Juichi Wakisaka and Andre Lotterer. The team won victory at the race's opening round in Suzuka. What made the feat impressive was that it was its debut race!
- Its deceptively nimble handling and long wheelbase have made the Lexus SC300 extremely popular in the professional and street motorsport of drifting. Despite being much heavier and bulkier than the other cars used for this particular sport, it is a very tough car to beat. Especially favored is the ease by which parts can be obtained.
- A lot of comparisons have been drawn between the Lexus SC300 and the Toyota Supra-after all, both are capable cars that also double as competitive racers. Apart from a few design considerations, however, they are very different machines. The Lexus SC300 is purely aimed at the luxury segment that just happens to be an excellent platform for racing development. So where did the comparisons come from? They come from the odd fact that parts of the two cars are cross-compatible!
- The Lexus SC300 is one of the longest lasting cars in the Lexus line-up-having survived for almost 20 years without being replaced. When it was indeed "replaced" in 2010, it was in fact simply upgraded to a four-door, drop-top, and V8 engine-equipped version of the older SC300. You could therefore argue that it hasn't really been phased out completely.
- Unlike other Toyota and Lexus designs that are home-grown on Japan, the Lexus SC300 is designed entirely in America-Southern California to be exact. What was the design theme of the car? Curvature. That is why you see so little in the way of sharp edges across the length of the Lexus SC300.
Two Most Common Gripes with the Lexus SC300
From the get-go, Toyota established Lexus as the brand to go for when you wanted true luxury. The Lexus SC300 was styled as a personal luxury coupe, and it went on be a capable alternative to more costly luxury brands. The SC300 was offered as a "light" alternative to the original 400, and it featured a smaller nut nonetheless equally capable engine. The reason for the SC300's popularity can be pegged to the fact that it was a classy enough car to be seen driving around in without the too-heavy price tag that one would associated with such vehicles. Listed here are two of the most common troubles that one encounters with the SC300.
Engine exhaust system failure
The 1997 release of the Lexus SC300 was found to have a fault specifically with the bracket holding the undercarriage exhaust pipes in place. This bracket, when heated, had a tendency to expand and eventually crack. In some cases this led to further troubles when the exhaust itself collapsed. This is a potentially dangerous problem as it can cause road mishaps to occur should the exhaust drop while in the middle of a drive-a fish-tailing effect can occur and cause the car to careen off-course.
Since the fault lies in the design of the bracket itself, the first option available in resolving the problem is to bring the car to the dealer for replacement. There are, however, aftermarket alternatives of better quality that present a second, more affordable option.
For those who do not yet know, overdrive allows your car to cruise at a set and sustained speed with no increase in the engine RPM-this results in better fuel economy, lower noise, and lower wear. This particular component failure is most visible in the 1993 version of the Lexus SC300. While failure of the overdrive won't too detrimentally affect normal driving conditions, it does keep the engine RPM levels rather high which could lead to quicker overheats or even engine trouble in the long run.
The best solution is a replacement of the overdrive module from the dealership. Alternatively, the aftermarket produces a lot of high-quality Lexus SC300 parts, including an overdrive module, so one can opt for that as well.
I accidentally filled up my Lexus SC300 with regular fuel and now it dies shortly after I start it up. What should I do?
The SC300's engine requires high octane unleaded because this car is very strong,soyou should have it checked by an expert in order to diagnose the problem. If you put in regular gas in a car which requires premium, this would not necessarily lead to engine failure, so look into other possible causes as well.
I'm looking into buying an old Lexus SC300, what are the things that I should look out for in buying a second hand car?The records shown to me by the dealer show low mileage and regular visits to the service center. Plus, the previous owner installed new rims before getting rid of the car so that's really a buying point for me as well.
Typically, you should always ask for the maintenance records of the car, check the authenticity of the mileage as well. Water pumps can be a problem at high mileage and quite expensive to replace. Check for oil leaks around the power steering pumps because this is a sure sign of a maintenance problem. Old Lexus SC300's are also known to have led problems in the long run so take a look at the gauges for signs of low lighting. The headlights and seats of an old car are instant indicators of the vehicle's overall health. The new rims are nice and all but you should also consider the reason why the last owner installed aftermarket rims considering this is a rare and collectible car.
I've been having trouble with my SC300's foggy headlights most especially during rainy or hazy night driving. Plus, the old-looking lights are really messing up the new paintjob that I applied on my Lexus.So I recently bought a headlight lens restorer kit but I'm not confident with just using that for the process. Any additional tips on how I can clean my headlights?
Before you start with the entire procedure, make sure that you don't get anything on your car's paintjob by layering some newspaper around the headlights for protection. Next, follow all the instructions on your lens restorer kit. Most kits have sand paper and polishers included; remember to sand carefully to avoid damaging the paint on your car. Replacing the headlights is an expensive option so you should do this on a regular basis to get more out of your lights.
My black Lexus SC300 (custom paint job) now has swirls and minor scratches from all that inexperienced car washing that I've done in the past. How can I restore this to its original glory without having to spend like I've acquired a new paint job?
This problem is unavoidable in all cars but is most evident with black ones. Buy a medium-grade strength polish which should be good enough to get rid of small scratches, don't buy the strong polishes for these could lead to more damage. Use microfiber cloths and pads to get the job done. Finish it off by applying black car wax.
Lexus SC300: A Mix of Speed and Style
The Lexus SC was a grand tourer that went into production from 1991 to 2010. Built to compete with luxury coupes such as the Infiniti M30, the Acura Legend, and the Mercedes-Benz SL, the SC series was designed by the California-based Calty Design Research center. The result was a stylish, two-door coupe that further established Lexus’ hold on the coupe segment. The first-gen SC featured an SC300 variant that received few upgrades throughout its nine years of production from 1991 to 2000. Today, the SC300 continues to attract buyers looking for a high-performing coupe.
1991: Introduction of SC300’s predecessor
In 1991, the SC400 was launched in the US as a 1992 model. This first-gen SC was equipped with a 4-L V8 1UZ-FE, an engine that was also used on the LS 400. Because of its outstanding road performance, the SC 400 was included in the Ten Best List by Car and Driver from 1992 to 1998.
1992: SC300 as a smaller variant of the SC400
In the following year, a smaller version of the SC400 was introduced. Equipped with a 3-L inline 6 2JZ-GE, the SC300 was targeted at buyers who preferred a coupe with a smaller engine. An optional feature was the TRAC, Lexus’ very own traction control system.
1996: Style and engine upgrades
Unlike other cars at the time, the Lexus SC300 as a first-gen SC was in production for nine years. Despite such a long production period, however, it only received minor upgrades until its last year of production in 2000. During a mid-cycle refresh, a modified spoiler and new tail lights were included in the design. In 1996, a new grille was complemented with a restyled front bumper, rocker panels, and side skirts. In the same year, a 1UZ-FE engine was partnered with a four-speed automatic transmission, a feature that was included on both SC400 and SC300 variants.
1997: More engine modifications
Engine upgrades were done in 1997 for the 1998 models. The SC 300 was equipped with a VVT-i. This resulted into higher horsepower (225 hp) and torque (220 lb/ft.). Based on engine tests, a five-speed manual SC300 reached 0-60 mph in just 6.8 seconds, while a four-speed automatic SC300 achieved 0-60 mph in 7.2 seconds. These stats were held all throughout the SC300’s production years.
Towards the late nineties, forever-fickle consumers started to lose interest in coupes. This change in consumer interest and the lack of significant design changes from its introduction led to a decline in SC300 sales. In 2001, the second-gen SC was equipped with a V8 engine and was renamed as the SC430, ending the reign of the SC300 variant. Today, the Lexus SC300 is fondly remembered as a powerful, two-door coupe that helped Lexus establish its reputation against European competitors.