Lexus GS Years To Avoid (Best and Worst)

Lexus GS Years To Avoid – The Lexus GS, a symbol of timeless elegance and performance, has captured the hearts of luxury car enthusiasts for decades. With its unrivaled blend of comfort, opulence, and a hint of sportiness, the Lexus GS remains a top choice among sedan aficionados.

However, in the world of automotive excellence, not every year is created equal.

In this article, we’ll delve into the illustrious history of the Lexus GS and pinpoint the model years that are best to avoid – the worst Lexus GS model years you should steer clear of.

Known for its impeccable blend of luxury and reliability, the GS has consistently won accolades from experts and drivers alike.

Consumer Reports US News and World Report have consistently lauded the Lexus GS for its all-around pleasing attributes and unwavering dependability.

These qualities have solidified the GS’s reputation as a trustworthy companion on the road, offering a smooth and comfortable ride paired with exceptional longevity.

The Lexus GS 300 and its successor, the GS 350, have been the poster children for Lexus’s commitment to quality and performance.

Lexus GS Years To Avoid

Generally accepted as reliable luxury cars in nearly every year model, these two variants have stood the test of time.

The Blemishes: Lexus GS Years to Avoid

However, even in a lineup as illustrious as the Lexus GS, there have been some hiccups along the way. Not every year model has lived up to the legendary Lexus reputation.

That’s where our cautionary tale begins.

As you embark on your journey to own a piece of Lexus luxury, here’s a word of advice – be cautious when navigating the sea of options.

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While the Lexus GS is generally renowned for its reliability, a few specific model years have raised concerns among owners and critics alike.

2013 Lexus GS 350: The Troubled Year

Among the various iterations of the Lexus GS, the 2013 Lexus GS 350 stands out as a cautionary tale. According to data from Car Complaints, this particular model year is widely regarded as the worst among the entire third-generation GS lineup.

While it’s not uncommon for the first year of a fully redesigned generation to have some teething problems, the 2013 Lexus GS 350’s issues are more significant than one would hope for.

This model year has garnered the most attention on the Car Complaints website, and that’s rarely a good sign.

In total, the 2013 Lexus GS has amassed a staggering 51 complaints, making it the standout contender for the title of the worst Lexus GS model year.

So, what are the primary issues plaguing the 2013 Lexus GS 350?

The most common problem reported by owners is a recurring one – a battery that dies prematurely, causing frustration and inconvenience.

Unfortunately, it appears that Lexus struggled to address this issue effectively, leaving owners with a persistent headache.

Given the multitude of complaints surrounding the 2013 model, it’s clear that this is a year to avoid if you’re in the market for a used Lexus GS.

While some may argue that the number of complaints is relatively small compared to the total number of vehicles produced, the persistence of these issues makes it a significant concern.

Opting for a 2014 model, just one year later, could save you a substantial amount of time, money, and trips to the auto shop. It’s safe to say that the 2013 Lexus GS 350 is a blemish on an otherwise illustrious legacy.

Read Also: Lexus LX Years To Avoid

Second Generation Woes: 2006 and 1998 Lexus GS 300

If you’re considering a much older second-generation Lexus GS, particularly the GS 300 variants, you’ll generally find reliable and affordable options.

These vehicles often offer a great deal of value for their price, and you can easily find a well-maintained Lexus GS 300 for a fraction of the cost of a third-generation model.

However, not all years within this generation are created equal, and there are two that stand out as ones to avoid – the 2006 and 1998 Lexus GS 300.

2006 Lexus GS 300

Owners of the 2006 model year have submitted a whopping total of 220 complaints, indicating significant issues with this particular iteration.

These complaints span a range of problems, from faulty mirrors that won’t reset their tilt after backing up to jerky shifting and even a fuel pump that tends to stop working unexpectedly.

These issues, among others, make the 2006 Lexus GS 300 one of the worst Lexus GS model years to consider.

1998 Lexus GS 300

While there are fewer submitted complaints for the 1998 model year compared to 2006, Car Complaints ranks it as the worst second-generation Lexus GS model year overall.

The primary concern for this year is engine failure, a problem that no car owner wants to encounter.

Read Also: Lexus NX Years To Avoid

Lexus GS Best Years

When it comes to luxury sedans, few names carry the same prestige as the Lexus GS. Renowned for its smooth ride, plush interiors, and a touch of sportiness, the Lexus GS has been a top choice among discerning drivers for years.

If you’re in the market for a used Lexus GS, you’re in for a treat.

We’ll explore the best years for the Lexus GS, focusing on the third-generation models that offer a blend of reliability, modern amenities, and affordability.

Lexus GS Best Years

So, let’s dive in and discover the standout years for the Lexus GS.

The Third-Generation Lexus GS: A Remarkable Evolution

In 2013, Lexus unleashed a fully redesigned version of the GS, marking the beginning of the third generation of this beloved sedan. The 2013 Lexus GS set a new standard for what luxury sedans could offer – a seamless blend of comfort, sophistication, and performance.

It retained its signature smooth and soft ride while adding a sporty handling characteristic that thrilled drivers.

According to US News and World Report, any used model from the third generation is likely to be a winner. These vehicles have consistently earned accolades for their exceptional reliability, earning a solid 5 out of 5 reliability score.

As of now, you can find these gems on the used market with an average price of around $32,812, making them a compelling choice for budget-conscious luxury car enthusiasts.

The Pinnacle of Luxury and Reliability: 2013 Lexus GS

Lexus GS Best Years

The 2013 Lexus GS deserves special mention as it represents the full redesign model year of the third-generation Lexus GS.

While it’s true that this year garnered the most complaints among its peers, it’s essential to understand that such issues are not uncommon in the first year of a redesigned generation.

This is why springing for a 2014 or 2015 model might be a more prudent choice, potentially saving you from any lingering early-production glitches.

However, it’s worth noting that the 2013 Lexus GS offers a host of appealing features. It successfully combines plush luxury, a spacious interior, a roomy trunk, and the sporty handling that its competitors strive to achieve.

Its reliability score remains impeccable, earning a 5 out of 5 rating.

Nonetheless, some drivers found fault with the tech control layout, citing a massive screen and an awkward “mouse-like” control knob as minor drawbacks.

Read Also: Lexus Most Reliable Car

The Evolution Continues: 2016 Lexus GS

best year for Lexus GS

For those looking for a perfect middle ground between the more dated earlier years and the pricier recent models, the 2016 Lexus GS is a stellar choice.

This model year witnessed significant upgrades and improvements.

Like its predecessors, the 2016 Lexus GS maintains its reputation for perfect reliability, providing peace of mind to used car buyers.

While the infotainment display system remains somewhat awkward to navigate, the 2016 model introduced blind spot monitoring and rear traffic alerts as standard features.

Two new engine options, along with additional trim levels, including the sporty GS F with a robust V8 engine, provide ample choices for prospective buyers.

Moreover, the 2016 Lexus GS received a cosmetic upgrade, boasting a bold new front grille, enhancing its visual appeal.

Read Also: What is the Most Expensive Lexus?

The Modern Touch: 2017 Onwards

best year for Lexus GS

As we move into the late third-generation Lexus GS models, starting from 2017, we find even more reasons to consider these years.

Navigation and the Lexus safety suite of driver assistance technologies, including lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, and forward collision warning, became standard features, enhancing safety and convenience.

From 2018 to the 2020 model year, it is possible to find great deals on a used Lexus GS. These models are packed with modern amenities that see incremental improvements each year.

According to both US News and Consumer Reports, you can hardly go wrong with a third-generation Lexus GS. However, it’s crucial to perform due diligence before making a purchase.

Check the used car’s history, and always verify the VIN for possible recalls to ensure that any issues have been addressed and repaired.

Read Also: Lexus IS 350 Years To Avoid

Lexus GS Problems

The Lexus GS 350, a distinguished member of the luxury sedan class, has earned a notable reputation for its reliability. With a stellar four out of five-star reliability rating from RepairPal, it’s clear that this vehicle is one of the most dependable options in its class.

However, like any automobile, it’s not without its share of common issues.

Lexus GS Problems

We’ll delve into the common problems reported by Lexus GS owners, shedding light on these challenges and how to address them.

1. Rearview Mirror Discoloration

## Problem: One of the issues that have been widely reported by Lexus GS 350 owners is the discoloration of the rearview mirror. What makes this problem particularly frustrating is that it can occur even if the mirror is not exposed to direct sunlight, which is a common cause of such issues in other vehicles.

## Solution: If you’ve noticed discoloration on your rearview mirror, it’s advisable to consult with a Lexus dealership or a qualified auto technician. They can examine the mirror and provide guidance on whether it can be restored or needs replacement.

2. Engine Start-Up Noises

## Problem: Some Lexus GS 350 owners have reported hearing rattling or knocking noises when starting the engine. These noises can be concerning, especially when you expect your luxury sedan to operate smoothly and quietly.

## Solution: If you’re experiencing unusual engine noises during start-up, it’s crucial to have your vehicle inspected promptly by a certified Lexus mechanic. These noises could be indicative of various issues, ranging from loose components to more complex engine-related problems.

Early diagnosis and repair can help prevent further damage and ensure your Lexus GS 350 runs smoothly.

Read Also: Lexus RX 330 Years to Avoid

3. Rapid Battery Drain

## Problem: Another common problem reported by some Lexus GS 350 owners is the rapid draining of the battery, even after replacing it with surprising frequency. A reliable vehicle should not exhibit such an issue, leaving drivers frustrated and inconvenienced.

## Solution: Addressing battery drain problems often requires a systematic approach. Begin by checking for any aftermarket electrical modifications or accessories that may be drawing excessive power from the battery.

If none are found, it’s best to consult with a Lexus dealership or a qualified technician who can conduct a thorough electrical system diagnosis.

This will help identify the root cause of the battery drain and ensure it is rectified correctly.

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Which Lexus GS is the most reliable?

The most reliable Lexus GS 350 model years include 2013 to 2017, with the 2016 GS 350 being a standout due to its perfect reliability score from J.D. Power. Additionally, the 2016 model introduced improved safety features such as blind spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alerts.

Does Lexus GS have problems?

Yes, Lexus GS models have experienced problems related to safety recalls, particularly concerning electrical and mechanical defects that could lead to stalling while driving or entering ‘limp home’ mode.

Is A Lexus GS A Good car?

The Lexus GS is considered a good car, known for its reliability and longevity. It ranks among the likes of Toyota and Honda for being a long-lasting vehicle, with many models reliably lasting over 200,000 miles.

Does Lexus GS hold its value?

Lexus GS models are known for holding their value well, making them a solid choice for those looking for a luxury car with good resale value. The RX 350, GS 350, ES 350, and LX 570 have all been recognized for their strong value retention in the luxury car market.

Read Also: Do Lexus Hold Their Value?


When considering the purchase of a Lexus GS, it’s essential to do your homework and make an informed decision. While the Lexus GS is generally known for its reliability and longevity, there are specific model years that you should avoid to ensure a trouble-free ownership experience.

The 2013 Lexus GS 350, plagued by numerous complaints, stands out as a year to steer clear of.

Instead, opting for the 2014 or 2015 model years may save you from frequent visits to the auto shop.

For those seeking a middle ground between affordability and modern features, the 2016 Lexus GS is a compelling choice, offering perfect reliability ratings and several upgrades.

From 2017 onwards, Lexus GS models have continued to improve, with the addition of standard safety features and modern amenities.

The best Lexus GS years offer a blend of luxury, reliability, and affordability, ensuring that you enjoy the premium driving experience that this vehicle is renowned for. So, remember to keep the information on Lexus GS years to avoid in mind when making your decision – it will help you make a wise choice for your next luxury sedan purchase.

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