2002 Lexus GS 300 Review

Pros & Cons

  • Silky engine, plenty of safety technology on-board, available Mark Levinson audio system, blend of luxury and sport.
  • Overdone styling
  • no manual transmission available
  • doesn't communicate with the driver enough, given the sporting mission of the car.
List Price

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Think twice before buying. The IS 300 is sportier, and the ES 300 is nearly as luxurious for considerably less money.

Vehicle overview

The Lexus GS series of cars is designed to offer a blend of both sport and luxury. The GS 300 is meant to appeal to semi-cost-conscious buyers, while the GS 430 is the full-tilt V8-powered version.

A distinctive quad-headlight design sweeps back into the hood and front fenders, and short front and rear overhangs give the GS 300 a sporty look. Some people might not care for the hindquarters with creative rear taillights, but at least they keep this car from blending in with the rest of today's high-line sport sedans.

Appearances are supported by the refined drivetrain. The GS 300 uses a 3.0-liter inline six that develops 220 horsepower at 5,800 rpm and 220 pound-feet of torque at 3,800 rpm. Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i) helps to produce additional power and provide optimal fuel efficiency. A five-speed automatic is the only transmission available. To take advantage of the transmission's five forward gears, the GS 300 features manual upshift and downshift buttons on the steering wheel spokes, controlled by the thumb and forefinger of either hand.

A roomy cabin provides the driver and front passenger with space to stretch out. An impressive 44 inches of legroom and 58 inches of shoulder room accommodate the long-limbed and broad-shouldered in the front seats. Rear-seat passengers don't fare as well, however, and get only 34.3 inches of legroom. Luxury touches include a standard dual-zone climate control, a power tilt and telescoping steering wheel, and the normal roster of power goodies typically found on luxury cars. Worthwhile options include a Mark Levinson premium sound system and a DVD-based navigation system that employs touchscreen controls to program routes. Unfortunately, Lexus has decided to bundle it with the audio and climate controls, which always work better with traditional buttons and knobs.

The GS 300 comes standard with Vehicle Skid Control (VSC), which is a system that employs the sensors, actuators and computer electronics of the antilock braking and traction control systems to help reduce vehicle skids caused by understeer or oversteer conditions. VSC is teamed with Brake Assist ABS; front, side and curtain airbags; and traction control to provide top-notch occupant protection.

The GS 300 sparkles on the open road. Its silent cabin, expurgated of any noise, harshness or vibration, is a portrait of tranquility. The GS 300 isolates you from any inconsistencies in the road. The four-wheel independent double wishbone suspension is configured to favor a supple, smooth ride over a taut, sporty one, which is great for the passengers, but a tad stultifying for the driver.

While we have no problem recommending the GS 300, we will point out that the car's advantages have been largely negated by the arrival of the IS 300 and all-new ES 300. The IS 300 is sportier, features the same engine and can be had with a manual transmission. The ES 300 offers nearly the same level of luxury -- navigation and a Mark Levinson sound system are available -- for a cheaper price. It would be in your best interest to check out these two cars before settling on the GS 300.

2002 Highlights

After a number of upgrades last year, the GS 300 enters 2002 unchanged.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2002 Lexus GS 300.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

Long Term Review '02 GS 300
Bought new in '02 for $40k. It's been a very good car, now at 230,000 miles. Everything works. Gets 23-24 in mixed drving and 25-26 on hwy still. burns 1 qt every 2k miles but i can live with that. hazy plastic headlights are a problem, requiring one of those resto kits. thats a small item and the rest of the car is v good. xlnt leather trim. quiet engine. i'll buy another gs and i hope the newer engine design is as reliable, quiet and fun as the I-6. dealer service is awfully $$$ and if you can find a competent and honest independent, go with that. better value than a 5 series or E300.
Love My GS 300
I have owned my 2002 GS 300 for 6 years. It now has 167,000 miles on it and it has been an awesome car. All I have done is had it's regular oil changes, changed a belt or two and have had absolutely no issues at all with this car. I prefer driving mine over the newer Lexus loaners I have driven. My car is solid, still drives smoothly, quietly & is quite dependable. This is by far the best car I have ever driven and would definitely buy another Lexus due to it's superior quality and performance.
A Happy Teen,04/02/2009
I just got a used 2002 Lexus GS300 for a Christmas present (as my first car!). It is really an amazing car. It's 7 or 8 years old with around 96K miles on it, but it still drives like a new car. I'm always getting compliments about it. The standard 6 CD changer is amazing, and the audio has an amazing bass system. The styling is absolutely amazing (but I'm not crazy about the tail lights). This car hasn't broken down in the 7 years it's been on the road. Gas mileage stinks, but it's a big SAFE car (6 airbags). I'd rather have a heavy safe car than a light car with good gas mileage any day. Take the weight and safety.
Lexus GS 300 is a good car
Bought it new in '02 for $39,500 and i still like it a lot. at 200k miles, it still runs quietly and smoothly. I'll get another one soon. A very few complaints and they are too minor to mention. I'm in sales and it's perfect for that. Dealer service is too expensive but if you can find an honest independent, go with that.


IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 2002 Lexus GS 300

Used 2002 Lexus GS 300 Overview

The Used 2002 Lexus GS 300 is offered in the following submodels: GS 300 Sedan. Available styles include 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 5A).

What's a good price on a Used 2002 Lexus GS 300?

Price comparisons for Used 2002 Lexus GS 300 trim styles:

  • The Used 2002 Lexus GS 300 Base is priced between $3,195 and$3,195 with odometer readings between 155000 and155000 miles.

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Which used 2002 Lexus GS 300s are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2002 Lexus GS 300 for sale near. There are currently 1 used and CPO 2002 GS 300s listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $3,195 and mileage as low as 155000 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2002 Lexus GS 300.

Can't find a used 2002 Lexus GS 300s you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Lexus GS 300 for sale - 12 great deals out of 18 listings starting at $20,132.

Find a used Lexus for sale - 4 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $12,223.

Find a used certified pre-owned Lexus GS 300 for sale - 5 great deals out of 23 listings starting at $7,623.

Find a used certified pre-owned Lexus for sale - 2 great deals out of 10 listings starting at $12,546.

Should I lease or buy a 2002 Lexus GS 300?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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Check out Lexus GS 300 lease specials