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View Full Version : Andy Wana's Pursuit of Perfection - Lexus GS430



Andy Wana
15-11-11, 12:53 PM
http://www.meadm.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/VictoriaTim-00047(pp_w850_h566).jpg

So the Cube is now owned and looked after by one of our resident gun photographers, Matt Mead. I felt that it was time to let it go and dip my toes in a different genre of cars.

Around the end of 2009, I had the privilege and pleasure to drive Babalouie's GS430 for about 2 weeks. It was mighty generous of Babs to lend the car for the long period of time and our family appreciated it from the bottom of our hearts. It converted mum and dad to Lexus too (they are hardcore Mercedes/ Euro fans when it comes to luxe cars). So that's a win for JDM. That brief period planted the seed for what was to come at the beginning of this month, almost 2 years later.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6103/6314261213_df571119e6_b.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/andywana/6314261213/)

One thing you noticed immediately about the GS430 is the quietness in the cabin. It's such a serene experience. Noise is such an underrated factor in the driving experience I reckon. It just takes all the stress away, you are in your happy place. Press the brake pedal and push start button, and it'll come alive with grace.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6102/6314259219_eac116cb0e_b.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/andywana/6314259219/)

The white dials is super legible and there is this special tint on the instrument binnacle that will appear blue in sunlight. No more glares and distractions! Super smart of Lexus to do so. It has a retractable blind of sorts at the back too, in case the sun gets too hot for the rear passengers.

http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/265ba298.jpg
(yes, you read it right ... only 32,591km when I drove it out of the dealership - not bad for a 5 year old car)

The GS pampers the driver and the passengers. The seat is ergonomic and let's not forget the front passenger crotch blasters. You can warm your buns for winter, or freeze them balls in summer, and it works really well too.

http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/c737a6b5.jpg

The V8 sound is muted but audible enough to be appreciated, luxury is the name of the game after all. The power delivery is super creamy and addictive. Just when you think the car wouldn't pull anymore, it will.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6043/6314256301_a1708e36f8_b.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/andywana/6314256301/)

Decisive on road manners, absolutely minimal body roll, great handling and superb power makes this a fantastic daily car. And it has a ginormous boot to store all your stuff too. The silhouette of the car is definitely sporty, low slung, low roof, but you won't struggle getting in and out of the car.

We tried the radar cruise control on the M5 on the way to the city one afternoon. It's such a great system, it'll pick up the speed (to the limit set) when the road ascends or when there's no one in front of you. It'll brake for you as well when the car in front slowed down!

Room is plenty all around, and the interior appointments are top class. Shutlines are tight, everything is built rock solid. I reckon Euro car buyers are given a good run for the money in this class. It's little wonder the GS was named best luxury car by Australia's Best Cars for a number of years (2006 - 2008, 2nd runner up in '09).

JDM-20L
15-11-11, 01:02 PM
Awesome pick up!

It is true mate, once you go lexus it is very hard to go elsewhere without reason!

You probably don't want to mod this right? :lol:

Babalouie
15-11-11, 01:03 PM
BTW the tint on the instrument lenses are actually an LCD thingo. There is a sensor on the back window, and it will darken the instrument lenses to reduce glare in bright sunlight (and there are 4 manual settings and 4 auto settings for darkening) :D

tiksie
15-11-11, 01:07 PM
Was waiting for a thread on this since I saw the car in the photography thread!

It will give me something to glare at on the way to Woolies from now on haha.

Great pick-up mate. The photos are great too.

Andy Wana
15-11-11, 01:11 PM
OK, so my good mate Dave Middleton paid a visit last week to tint the GS. In my opinion, he's one of the best in the game as far as tinting goes. He has an eye for details and he has this motto of "do it once, do it right". All the company cars at my workplace were tinted by him. He uses Johnson Window films, I am not sure what the reputation of the film is but it's good enough for me.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6237/6327941411_48fe9cbf3d_z.jpg

His tools aren't fancy, but they get the job done well. First, he'll clean the crap off the windows inside out.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6218/6328691060_cc83ab551c_z.jpg

And he'll get the seats and relevant trims out before he gets to work.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6031/6328691832_fba09bd3c4_z.jpg

He had worked on the GS300, so the seats came off quick.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6221/6327938553_9e0d563556_z.jpg

The rear window was the biggest PITA, so that's done first.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6238/6328692256_3e9e6dd190_z.jpg

He basically cut out the template from the outside. He sprayed something like talcum powder on the window, followed by a spray solution to keep the film workable. He'll iron out the creases using low heat with a heat gun whilst squeegee-ing out the excess water. He'll then peel off the film, spray more water, and then adhere the film to the window.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6037/6328692616_3b49546168_z.jpg

Here's a photo of him applying the film on the front window. The film used is a nice shade of neutral gray. The OEM Lexus glass is actually very good as it is. Great UV protection and all. It has a light greenish tinge to it, as you can see in the photos. Euro cars like Mercedes usually has a blue-ish tinge on their glass. I like Dave because he's not trying to jazz up the film like other tinters do. The darker film actually don't offer a lot more UV protection than your factory glass. Nor does it keep out more heat, which kinda makes sense since black retains heat, not reflect them. What they do best is offer privacy and cuts glare. And that's what I am after.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6042/6327940217_059d3a8b26_z.jpg

What's special about his work too is the final bit, which looks all sorts of wrong. He'll leave a tiny bit of film and he'll then FILE the film onto the glass. The film goes right up to the edge of the glass this way. And this is why you can pretty much wind the window up/ down only hours after he applied it. As you can see, the first time he did this on the Cube ... I was "concerned". The result is pretty damn good though, glass and film feel very smooth to the touch. That's 22 years of experience right there for you.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6060/6327940903_c0a032b734_z.jpg

And the results? I'll let photos speak for themselves.

Rear shot

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6059/6328740916_81b621e6a5_z.jpg

Rear 3/4 shot

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6224/6327987113_1cfbf210c3_z.jpg

Side shot

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6112/6328741370_029e0ae71a_z.jpg

Front 3/4 shot

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6032/6328741744_1129eff6d3_z.jpg

Film is clear as crystal from the inside ...

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6214/6327989285_4ca3404ce2_z.jpg

... and that filed edge that I was talking about looks flawless up close

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6052/6328743012_e1979d995c_z.jpg

And that window was wound down 1 hr after the film's installed. Try that with your normal tint guy and chances are it'll fall apart.

Andy Wana
15-11-11, 01:15 PM
Awesome pick up!

It is true mate, once you go lexus it is very hard to go elsewhere without reason!

You probably don't want to mod this right? :lol:

LOL. I have said to others that I won't mod it ... but we shall see.
I've also said that I will keep the Cube for a while, so far I've not kept a car for more than 2.5 years.


BTW the tint on the instrument lenses are actually an LCD thingo. There is a sensor on the back window, and it will darken the instrument lenses to reduce glare in bright sunlight (and there are 4 manual settings and 4 auto settings for darkening) :D

Lexus - the pursuit of perfection. 'nuff said. The rear and side mirrors will cut glare (esp. from HIDs) automatically too.


Was waiting for a thread on this since I saw the car in the photography thread!

It will give me something to glare at on the way to Woolies from now on haha.

Great pick-up mate. The photos are great too.

Thanks mate.

CallMeKay
15-11-11, 02:10 PM
Nyan

JDM-20L
15-11-11, 03:14 PM
LOL. I have said to others that I won't mod it ... but we shall see.
I've also said that I will keep the Cube for a while, so far I've not kept a car for more than 2.5 years.




Just make sure you block your browser from sites like yahoo.jp, ausvip and put spam filters on your mail for guys like Jesse Streeter and it'll stay stock.. :lol:

Window tint job looks great though man! Care to share his contact details? PM if you like.:)

Tonba
15-11-11, 03:20 PM
Really nice car..

Airbags and Rims comming up?? :-P

kaspa_lee
15-11-11, 03:26 PM
Care to share costs of tints? Looks great! Oh and nice car too :) Post some interior pics

dave2221
15-11-11, 03:40 PM
http://www.canibeat.com/2011/11/executive-jasons-vip-lexus-gs300/

mitsupower90
15-11-11, 04:14 PM
Definitely not a car you see on here too often...

Looks good though mate :)
The car looks pretty damn well near perfect condition lol.
Good pick up and good luck with it :)

I bet that juicy V8 goes quite well too

Andy Wana
15-11-11, 04:17 PM
Just make sure you block your browser from sites like yahoo.jp, ausvip and put spam filters on your mail for guys like Jesse Streeter and it'll stay stock.. :lol:

Window tint job looks great though man! Care to share his contact details? PM if you like.:)

LOL. I had been perusing Yahoo Auctions Japan for the past few days actually. I think I'd be lying to myself if I say this car is going to be stock. It's going to be reasonably modded though, now that I am a family man. Happy to share Dave's contact details with you (0411 322 599), but I have to warn you that he's not the cheapest. He took a good 3+ hrs to install the film on my car and the quality of his work reflects that.


Really nice car..

Airbags and Rims comming up?? :-P

No bags, maybe just rims. The ride is comfy enough as it is, and the stock height is pretty good. =)


Care to share costs of tints? Looks great! Oh and nice car too :) Post some interior pics

Will post some interior pics when I get a chance. The car's stock as a rock at the moment though, not hard to find some stock images online. LOL.


http://www.canibeat.com/2011/11/executive-jasons-vip-lexus-gs300/

This is good too ...
http://www.canibeat.com/2011/09/vip-lexus-gs-brothers-with-a-purpose/

http://www.canibeat.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Brothers_GS_cover-900x600.jpg

autechlol
15-11-11, 04:44 PM
v nice. I drive a GS300 on a the regular, cannot fault it.

Eurolines would go a treat.

Andy Wana
15-11-11, 05:01 PM
Definitely not a car you see on here too often...

Looks good though mate :)
The car looks pretty damn well near perfect condition lol.
Good pick up and good luck with it :)

I bet that juicy V8 goes quite well too

I am happy to report that the V8 is smooth like triple cream brie. Output is between 216 to 224 kW (290 to 300 hp) at 5600 rpm with 441 Nm (325 ftlbf) of torque at 3400 rpm. It's not overly powerful, but it pulls pretty hard when it needs to. It needs all that power and torque, since it's a pretty heavy car at around 1700kg.


v nice. I drive a GS300 on a the regular, cannot fault it.

Eurolines would go a treat.

It's a pampering daily drive, that's for sure. On the topic of wheels, I actually want to go down the line of a sporty executive sedan instead of VIP. Hoping to be a bit different to the other GS out there I guess. With a baby on board, it'll be a relatively sensible (i.e boring) car.

jd_911
15-11-11, 05:02 PM
Nice buy, they're beautiful cars!

JDM-20L
15-11-11, 05:20 PM
LOL. I had been perusing Yahoo Auctions Japan for the past few days actually. I think I'd be lying to myself if I say this car is going to be stock. It's going to be reasonably modded though, now that I am a family man. Happy to share Dave's contact details with you (0411 322 599), but I have to warn you that he's not the cheapest. He took a good 3+ hrs to install the film on my car and the quality of his work reflects that. [/IMG]

ha ha I know this Yahoo stalking... :lol:

Thanks for the details mate! Not fussed on paying the big $$ for a top notch job! Looks like the guy is a perfectionist! wonder if he can hook me up with aqua tint for my toyota too? :p

Cheers!

Andy Wana
25-12-11, 01:34 AM
So I have some time to kill today and I decided to install the side visors. The car was given the complete Christmas treatment beforehand - wash, wax and polished. Not very fun when it was done in the middle of a hot day.

Overnight (more like over a week) from Japan:
http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/9d5b3242.jpg

Very professional and neat packaging, the visors were individually wrapped:
http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/a11210c3.jpg

OEM quality, the visor is actually part metal and part plastic:
http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/98653765.jpg

Lexus embossing = BO$$:
http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/edc2a099.jpg

Each visor has this fabric lining on the inside, and sticky foam tape at each end.
The front visors actually wedged itself behind the side mirrors.
There's no need to measure, the thing basically aligns itself perfectly.
Feels very reassuringly solid too.

There are also these metal tabs that will click onto the metal top bezel of each window:
http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/d08a805c.jpg

Samurai sword thin, the built quality of these visors are amazing:
http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/08d4657c.jpg

All you need to do is peel off the stickers halfway, position and adjust the visor into place, click tabs into window (and wedge behind side mirrors for the front), proceed to peel off stickers all the way, admire your handiwork.

So how do they look? Really good IMHO
http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/3bc3d957.jpg

They don't overpower visually and blend in nicely with the tinted windows.
The chrome strip around the window stays unbroken other than 2 added lines ... and they are so slim that you hardly notice them.
http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/cc7f6305.jpg

From afar, you'd hardly notice any difference I think
http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/5e66d65a.jpg

My only complaint is that they are a tad short, but they don't add to the blind spot areas on the A and C pillars ... which were thoughtful
http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/75767a9c.jpg

Overall, I am pretty happy with the result. They look ace but subtle enough to blend in with the rest of the car.
http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp264/andywana1980/e2ec17af.jpg

EGG80X
25-12-11, 01:46 AM
nice Andy

046
25-12-11, 03:22 AM
nice, they look heaps neat.

lol my mate got a set for his older GS300 but they say toyota on them, we always give him shit that it's just a RWD camry heheh.
at least yours say Lexus :P

Andy Wana
25-12-11, 08:54 AM
The 3rd gen GS is actually the first Lexus branded car in Japan and the first with the L finesse styling. Prior to this car, it's always been called Toyota in its homeland, like your friend's Aristo.

tiksie
25-12-11, 04:04 PM
Spotted this the other day, looks so much more classy in person.

prelure
25-12-11, 05:55 PM
nice and subtle

[ IV 23 VI ]
25-12-11, 07:55 PM
Nice car looks just like mine :) lol good to see you joined the GS club! Seems everyone is starting to pick them up now since there very affordable now.

kona480
25-12-11, 09:16 PM
Visors look awesome. I bought some genuine nissan ones for my 1992 pulsar which are as you can imagine very hard to find, they arrived in the mail shattered in 10 different pieces : (

JaCe
26-12-11, 12:39 AM
http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6052/6328743012_e1979d995c_z.jpg

And that window was wound down 1 hr after the film's installed. Try that with your normal tint guy and chances are it'll fall apart.

Impressive. I didn't even realise that you could do that! Good job with the new car choice- luxury all the way!

Frogger
26-12-11, 12:56 AM
Love this Andy!

Andy Wana
26-12-11, 03:31 PM
Spotted this the other day, looks so much more classy in person.


nice and subtle

Thanks guys!


;1098516']Nice car looks just like mine :) lol good to see you joined the GS club! Seems everyone is starting to pick them up now since there very affordable now.

Lexus depreciation FTW! Pretty much 5 series/ E class build quality and performance for Camry money in the used market. That's hard to beat in anyone's book. Was worth waiting for the right car since the other V8 GS430s on carsales either have high mileage or still too pricey. GS450h was a contender, but they seemed to have hybrid tax on them (plus you lose quite a substantial amount of boot space). GS460s are still out of my budget, but they are faster and their multimedia unit are updated with iPhone connectivity and colourful higher res screen.


Visors look awesome. I bought some genuine nissan ones for my 1992 pulsar which are as you can imagine very hard to find, they arrived in the mail shattered in 10 different pieces : (

The visors blended in really nicely with the rest of the car, they look really good in person. You'd hardly notice them.

DR-JEKL
05-06-12, 08:41 PM
Are there any updates with your GS to report?

davib
05-06-12, 09:00 PM
very nice !!
thanks for the photos, be meaning to tint my rears.

its an easy diy,

fyi, i accidently rolled down my windows straight away after i tinted my windows - had no problems!

but thanks to your photos i now have more ideas on how to make tinting easier!