PREMIUM interiors, outstanding power train smoothness, spaciousness, exceptional handling, ride, comfort and safety – sounds great doesn’t it? The vehicles we are describing are the 2018 Lexus LS 500 and 500h, launched in Australia today.
With astounding craftsmanship, that includes kiriko glass door inserts on some models, the fifth-generation LS is based on a new rear-drive platform and features a bold design with a new coupe-like silhouette.
Two power trains are offered, including a 310kW twin-turbo V6 and a multi-stage hybrid system (combining V6 petrol and electric power for a maximum 264kW), both teamed with the first 10-speed transmission in the segment.
In a nod to the importance of hybrid technology, pricing is identical for LS 500 and LS 500h, beginning at $190,500 for F Sport, with a $5000 premium for Sports Luxury model variant.
There are eight premium hand-crafted interior ornamentation options for the Sports Luxury models, four of which command a premium of $9,880. Lexus has also expanded its customer care, with unconditional 10-year complimentary roadside assistance.
Lexus Australia chief executive Scott Thompson said the new LS 500 draws on the proud history of its predecessors, reflecting the human-centred engineering and attention to detail that is synonymous with Lexus.
“This human touch gives the Lexus brand its soul and sets it apart from our competitors,” he said.
LS chief engineer Toshio Asahi said the challenge for Lexus with the fifth-generation model was not simply to go beyond the achievements of the past, but to re-imagine what a global flagship sedan should be.
“In doing so, four key pillars underpinned the development of the new LS – brave design, Takumi craftsmanship, exhilarating performance and imaginative technology,” he said.
Foundation for the new design and chassis was the GA-L platform that allowed Lexus to extend the wheelbase, provide a spacious interior, and achieve an ideal front-rear weight balance and the lowest centre of gravity in class for greater agility and comfort.
The latest Lexus Safety System+ includes a pre-collision system, all-speed radar active cruise control, lane keep assist and adaptive high-beam system to control the LED headlamps.
Every Lexus LS is also equipped with blind-spot monitor, rear cross-traffic alert, pop-up bonnet and tyre pressure monitoring system, while advanced new front and rear seat designs offer class-leading levels of adjustment and sophisticated new massage functions.
Interior tech includes a 12.3-inch multimedia screen, head-up display, Mark Levinson 23-speaker audio and auto-closing doors. Performance benefits include Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM), air suspension and adaptive variable suspension.
The LS 500 F Sport is the outright performance model, equipped with the V6 turbo, a world-first six-step VDIM system, four-wheel steering and active stabiliser bars to provide an even higher level of stability control while maintaining ride comfort.
It includes unique exterior and interior treatments, 20-inch alloys with a front-rear tyre size differential, and high-performance brakes. The more luxurious Sports Luxury model gets a host of additional features.
These include four-zone climate control with rear cooler, 22-way power rear seats with passenger-side ottoman and seven massage programs, rear-seat entertainment and noise-dissipating 20-inch alloy wheels.