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Car reviews - Lexus - GS - GS450h sedan


Lexus' GS450h hybrid is here, but do we really need a $122,000 elecro-V6 luxury car?

16 May 2006

LEXUS has been endeavouring to muscle its way into the golf-club set for years. The LS400 started the ball rolling back in 1990 and the progressive roll out of superbly equipped models has strengthened its position considerably. Cachet lovers will still opt for a Bimmer, Merc, Audi or Jag but some folk who’ve flipped over to Lexus wouldn’t go back. The company prides itself on customer care levels that are the envy of its rivals and the build quality of Lexus vehicles is second to none. However, the GS450h – "h" for hybrid – is the company’s first performance hybrid. It’s also the first among the luxury marques to deliver an economical, yet enormously powerful luxury sedan, and that’s perhaps the real measure of the inroads Lexus has made. It started out following the pack, now Lexus leads it.
Model release date: 1 May 2006 to 1 March 2008

Previous model

Lexus GS sedan

Released: November 97
Ended: February 05
Family Tree: GS

There has never been a hybrid Lexus before, so it’s all a brave new world for the marque. In broader terms, the previous petrol model was the GS300 sold between November 1997 and February 2005. It impressed with its large, smooth engine and rear-drive layout. The GS was among the first Lexus models to arrive in Australia. It joined the big LS400 as a serious luxury car rival to the established German and English players. From October 2001 more kit was thrown at the GS with a satellite-navigation system while a mesh-grilled L-tuned limited edition GS was released in April 2003. The latest GS introduces not only hybrid power but V6 and V8 engines for the first time.

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