Used 2009 Lexus SC 430

2009 Lexus SC 430
List price range
2009 Lexus SC 430

Pros

  • Retractable hardtop, near-silent V8 engine, rock-solid Lexus dependability and quality.

Cons

  • Lack of trunk space, ridiculously small rear seats, lackluster handling and performance.
Lexus SC 430 years

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Edmunds' Expert Review

The 2009 Lexus SC 430 is a comfortable and luxurious convertible that excels at leisurely weekend drives but lacks the sporting athleticism of the competition.

vehicle overview

Back when the Lexus SC 430 debuted for the 2002 model year, we described this convertible as "elegant" and "innovative" -- the latter thanks to its retractable hardtop design. Since then, however, the SC 430 has stayed pretty much the same while competitors have released their own four-seat drop tops that best the Lexus in a number of aspects. The Lexus SC 430 can no longer rest on its laurels; it's time for a makeover.

But it's just more of the same for 2009. The SC 430 has some positive attributes. The convertible maintains its reputation for exceptional build quality, resolute reliability and civilized road manners. Unfortunately, it also keeps its hindrances: limited trunk storage with the top up (which becomes almost nonexistent when the folding top is stowed), laughably small and uncomfortable rear seats and a notable lack of driving fun.

With any luck, Lexus will breathe some new life into this underperforming model, but with sagging sales and shifts in buying habits, it's more likely that the SC 430 will be shelved after this year. Anyone considering the purchase of a 2009 Lexus SC 430 would be well-advised to take a look at other four-seat convertible models such as the BMW 335i, the Jaguar XK8 and the Mercedes-Benz CLK550, which deliver more convenience, performance and rear-seat comfort.

2009 Lexus SC 430 configurations

The 2009 Lexus SC 430 is a luxury convertible with a power-retractable hardtop that folds into the trunk. The drop top's single trim level comes standard with 18-inch alloy wheels, adaptive HID headlights, a navigation system with a tilt display and voice activation, leather upholstery, power/heated front seats with memory for the driver, a 10-speaker Mark Levinson sound system, an in-dash six-CD changer, Bluetooth, dual-zone climate control and genuine wood trim in bird's eye maple or walnut, depending on leather choices.

Given the vast selection of standard features, few options are available for the SC 430. These include run-flat tires, a rear spoiler and additional wheel choices. Returning for a sixth year is the Pebble Beach Edition SC 430, which has a limited production of 360 units. These cars set themselves apart from the others with special badging, wheels and other unique details. But the added expense really only makes sense for avid golf enthusiasts.

2009 Highlights

The 2009 Lexus SC 430 remains unchanged from the previous year except for the addition of turn signals integrated into the side mirrors.

Performance & mpg

As in previous years, the 2009 Lexus SC 430 is powered by a 4.3-liter V8 producing 288 horsepower and 317 pound-feet of torque. Power is sent to the rear wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission with manual shift control. The sleek convertible manages to reach 60 mph in a respectable 5.8 seconds. Fuel economy is comparable to that of other luxury convertibles at 16 mpg city/23 mpg highway and 19 mpg combined.

Safety

In keeping with Lexus' reputation for safety, the SC 430 is equipped with antilock brakes with brake assist, traction control, stability control, front-seat side airbags and front-seat knee airbags.

Driving

Although the 2009 Lexus SC 430 is dated, it remains a solid choice as a luxury convertible. Practically every road imperfection is smoothed over by its compliant suspension, and the engine readily and quietly spools up to redline with minimal drama. These qualities make for a great road-trip coach (as long as you don't have much luggage) or boulevard cruiser, but they also reduce any sporting capabilities. The SC 430's lack of feedback and lethargic handling are likely to disappoint driving enthusiasts.

Interior

The 2009 Lexus SC 430 transforms from hardtop luxury coupe to open-air convertible in less than 30 seconds. Witnessing the metamorphosis is a bit like watching a ballet, as the top disappears completely under the rear deck lid. As with any Lexus, the SC 430's interior features top-notch materials and an attractive design. Occupants are enveloped in supple leather and rich wood trim. Features such as climate control lap vents that adjust to top-up or -down driving conditions add to the experience.

Unfortunately, the SC 430 can really be enjoyed only from the front seats, since the minuscule rear accommodations could easily make a child contortionist wince. Trunk space is similarly limited, with a maximum of 9.4 cubic feet with the top up while running on run-flat tires. With a spare tire, capacity drops to 8.8 cubes, and with the hardtop stowed, you have just about enough space for a box of Tic Tac mints.


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Features & Specs

MPG
16 city / 23 hwy
Seats 4
6-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
288 hp @ 5600 rpm
See all Used 2009 Lexus SC 430 features & specs
More about the 2009 Lexus SC 430
Used 2009 Lexus SC 430 Overview

The Used 2009 Lexus SC 430 is offered in the following submodels: SC 430 Convertible. Available styles include 2dr Convertible (4.3L 8cyl 6A).

What's a good price on a Used 2009 Lexus SC 430?

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Which used 2009 Lexus SC 430s are available in my area?

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Find a used Lexus SC 430 for sale - 3 great deals out of 13 listings starting at $14,094.

Find a used Lexus for sale - 4 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $15,555.

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Find a used certified pre-owned Lexus for sale - 4 great deals out of 14 listings starting at $19,685.

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Should I lease or buy a 2009 Lexus SC 430?

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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