High equipment levels and meticulous quality and refinement have been formula for building and maintaining Lexus. It embodies a fresh design approach, re-engineered from ground up.
Dominated by a long cabin with steeply angled front and rear glass, windows allow plenty of light into well-organized interior. The Rear passengers get plenty of legroom – wheelbase has been lengthened by 50mm – and large quarter-windows.
The GS300 Sports at $95,000 includes climate control, heated and ventilated front seats, auto headlights and wipers, reversing camera and steering wheel audio controls. The Sports Luxury model tested here adds satellite navigation, a sunroof, intelligent cruise control, parking sensors and an excellent Mark Levinson stereo system.
Operating full time, GS300's all-wheel-drive system features a planetary gearset and a wet, multidisc clutch to couple primary drive wheels, at rear, to front. The standard torque split is 30/70 front to rear, but system's electronic brain can vary that to 50/50, making its judgments based on various driver inputs such as throttle angle and steering angle, and vehicle data such as wheel speed and yaw rate
Every GS has three variations of a new close-ratio six-speed automatic transmission, each designed for optimum performance with their respective GS applications. One of smallest and lightest gearboxes of its type, it includes a sequential manual shift mode, with gear changes made via a lever in center console. An outstanding feature of car is all-wheel-drive system. The more slippery road, more pronounced is its advantage over conventional two-wheel-drive systems.
The car has an all-new 3.0-liter DOHC 24-valve aluminum V-6, which replaces an iron-block straight six of identical displacement. With Toyota's VVT-i variable-valve-timing system operating on cams, plus direct injection, plus a formidable 11.5:1 compression ratio, new six generates 245 horsepower and 230 pound-feet of torque, compared with 220 of each for its predecessor. The new V-6 is bolted to an equally new six-speed automatic transmission, featuring manumatic shifting and an electronic brain that does a good job of avoiding excessive hunting, particularly in uphill runs.