Why is the Lexus LS 460 so Reliable? (3 Buying Tips)

In this brief article, we will discuss the Reliability of the Lexus LS 460, the most common problems in past model years and tips on buying a used Lexus LS 460.

How reliable is the Lexus LS 460?

The Lexus LS 460 could easily be called “Very reliable”. And the reason is that in 2016 the LS 460 scored a J.D. Power reliability rating of 4.5 out of five. Apparently, the LS 460 was considered better than the reliability rating of every other super luxury car that year. 

But this has not been the case in the past. The fourth generation (XF40 platform 2007-2010) of LS series when the LS 460 model was launched was probably the worst among all the LS460 model years. It had several recalls concerning the safety of the Fuel pressure sensor, Fuel lines and Valve Springs. Apart from this, there were several complaints.

What are the most common problems seen in the Lexus LS 460?

The most common problems in the LS 460 (especially from the problematic 2007-2010 model years) are:

  • Melting Dashboard and Door Panels: According to Carcomplaits.com the 2008 model year had melting dashboard and door panels as the top reported problem.
  • Control Arm failure: Aftermarket parts as a solution, lower price and better durability. Issue was fixed from 2011-2012 model years onwards
  • On-Center steering dead spot: This was a part of a safety recall in the 2009 model year. NHTSA Campaign number: 10V218000 can be referred for more details. Reason for the recall was the improper activation of the steering system protection logic which caused the steering wheel to become off-centered up to 90 degrees.
  • Water Pump Failure: 40-70k miles of service life
  • Brake Actuator Failure: In many cars in the 2007-2010 model year period, the ABS and VSC lights came on while driving. It is a serious issue concerning the safety of the vehicle as the actuator controls the power distribution to all brakes. When it fails the ABS module shuts down and the yaw sensor is disabled, which is quite a scary situation at highway speeds.

Avoidable Failure-Prone High end variants

  • LS 460 AWD models and the LS 460 L models came with Active Variable Suspension and the Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management. These systems, when broken at high mileage, are expensive to replace. Especially, the Electronic Dampers would be expensive and would invariably require replacement at close to 100K miles
  • Hybrid Battery System Failure: The LS 460 Hybrid models had a Lithium Ion battery pack that had a limited life of just over 100K miles. In high mileage cars, there is a risk of the battery pack reaching its end-of-life. The Hybrid battery pack costs $5K to replace. In addition, the battery pack adds additional weight to the car, and not so much of an increase in the ‘mpg’ figures as compared to a regular V8 engine vehicle.
  • Air Suspension Failure: Air bags tend to wear out at close to 70K miles and are very expensive to replace. It would be best to avoid the variants that came with the Air Suspension option package.
  • Avoid the Executive Package, which included a rear-seat DVD system, a swivel tray table, and a shiatsu massaging ottoman seat. These devices are almost always prone to failure and expensive to replace. Moreover, they add a few hundred pounds of extra weight, which is avoidable. 

Tips on buying a used Lexus LS 460

  • The initial 4-5 model years of the Lexus LS460 had persistent issues that were common. According to carcomplaints.com, it would be best to avoid buying the 2007 – 2012 model years.
  • For any pre-2015 model LS 460, make sure the recall updates to the Fuel system and Valve Springs were done
  • Utilize the Lexus Drivers (Lexus Owners’ official) Website. When you have shortlisted a car to purchase, before buying, create an account like a vehicle owner and key in the VIN of the used car you are trying to check out. You will be able to see the actual past service appointments made through the dealership to see how often it was serviced and see if there were any major issues that were being attended to.

Other articles about Lexus you may be interested in

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In this brief article, we have discussed the Reliability of the Lexus LS 460, the most common problems in past model years and tips on buying a used Lexus LS 460.

In case of any queries or comments, please feel free to ask.