Lexus' challenger to the E-Class, 5 Series and A6 has always been something of an inconspicuous, somewhat bland contender for those that really didn't want to go mainstream, or for those swayed by the hybrid technology that the previous version brought to the class.
The new GS that you see here hopes to change that with its “bolder design” and “more engaging driving experience.” Though it is clearly more distinctive at the front end, with its 'spindle' grille that will feature on all future Lexus models, the side view plays it safe in elegant fashion while the rear styling has perhaps too many Hyundai Sonata overtones.
As for driver involvement, a redesigned chassis with a wider stance and stiffer structure aims to provide crisp and precise handling. The suspension has also been redesigned with large bushings in the front and an all-new multi-link set-up at the back.
The engine line-up appears to offer much the same. Lexus has confirmed that South Africans will be offered a range of petrol and hybrid models when the GS arrives next year, and more will be revealed when the car makes its first appearance at the Johannesburg International Motor Show this October.
It appears that all markets will get the GS 450h petrol electric hybrid and as far as conventional engines are concerned, Europe will receive a 2.5-litre V6 petrol, while the USA (and likely SA too) gets a 3.5-litre V6. Lexus has only released details on the latter, its power output pegged at 228kW - a healthy gain from the current GS 300's 183kW.
Cabin space is said to have improved despite the car's dimensions remaining unchanged and Lexus also promises a “richly appointed interior” with three types of wood on offer and meticulously detailed contrast stitching throughout.
The long, sculpted dashboard includes a clean centre stack and a high-res display screen. A nifty new feature is the energy-saving climate control system that directs airflow only to the areas where passengers are actually seated. There's also an improved Bluetooth system that offers automatic phonebook download and streaming audio.
The safety arsenal includes 10 airbags (including knee-bags for both front occupants, and side airbags for rear occupants) and buyers can opt for a pre-collision system that uses the radar cruise control system to warn the driver of upcoming objects that may present a hazard. If the driver fails to respond, the system will even automatically brake the car up to two seconds before impact.
The new GS also offers the usual list of active safety features like night vision enhancement, head-up display, blind spot monitor, lane keeping assist and lane departure warning.
Front looks like the current, IS. The rear, like that of the Sonata. In general, not a very original design. Simply a glorified TOYota. Not worth any hype.
Riley Freeman, wrote
I'm so sick of these idiots talking about "Hyundai Sonata overtones". I wouldn't expect a media outlet such as Popular Mechanics to make such a asinine statement. It's almost as if everyone forgot the Lexus IS exists... the same car the current Sonata STOLE its tail lights from. Hyundai rips most of its designs from Lexus and Mercedes so why is it now the Lexus is somehow copying Hyundai?
Beautifull with Toyota reliability.Awesome
What is it about asian product. They just have that feel of great engineering , solidity and durability.
thanks , is not alleged to be leaked pics, tired of remarks
It doesn't look like a sonata. The rear hip is corrollais250 and the tailights are audi or bmw x1. The numberplate section is passat. All it means is that its current.
QUICK!!! Inform the government of this car, or is under R1million too cheap for them?
Is that the best you can do Toyota? Make it look like a Hyundai?
george galbraith, wrote
A refreshing and aspirational new arrival that I predict will be a winner. I just hope that Lexus will never fall into the greed-trap enjoined by the Germans in particular, where components that should be part of the 'furniture' of luxury vehicles are offered as optional extras. This is marketing by stealth and misrepresents the value equation When I grow up I would like one
How originally depressing. The front looks like a vaccum cleanerlawnmower and the back is a replica of the Hyundai Sonata. Take that bells away! That designer must be drunk.
Just another Toyota.....I will stick to the German 3 thank you...
The M, wrote
Very nice. Albeit just a bigger IS250, but nice nonetheless
wait till the recalls start!
It's a cracker - thums up toyota
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