As seen on:

SMH Logo News Logo

Call 1300 303 181

2020 Lexus LS

Here is a master class in automotive engineering.  Lexus has created the next generation LS (Luxury Sedan), with all its premium technology, all its refinement, and all its quality.  The dextrous engineers behind the 2020 Lexus LS have ensured the new Lexus LS is full of ingenious features.  It’s been almost 30 years since the introduction of the first Lexus LS, which shook up the motoring world when it was introduced.

2020 sees the car low and curvy, a great outline for a luxury sedan grand tourer.  The dimensions for this model are 5235 mm long, 1900 mm wide, 1450 mm high and a 3125 mm wheelbase.  The new LS has a wheelbase that is 35 mm longer than the outgoing LS model, while the new car also has a 15 mm lower roofline.  The low swooping bonnet is also 30 mm closer to the road.  Its kerb weight is 2240 kg, so it’s as hefty as any current large luxury sedan.  Interior space is good both front and rear, and it is definitely comfortable.  The boot Space is on the smaller side: 440 litres, and that’s with a spare space saver wheel on board, but it is surprising what you can pack in to 440 litres when the need arises.

Get behind the wheel of the latest Lexus LS and the experience is one of pure refinement.  Superbly built, the big luxury LS sedan has a delightful way of coasting, sort of wafting, over the road at high speeds in silence in Comfort mode.  It’s very easy to get relaxed and to eat up the long distance miles with the new LS, and it’s a car that you’ll enjoy driving mile-after-mile.  When I said wafting, I’ll correct any thought that this might be a car at sea in the corners because it’s definitely not.  The new Lexus LS has a brilliantly set chassis and suspension that knows when to grip hard for the harder driver and sit back and coast in comfort the rest of the time.  Sportier modes tighten up the chassis to make it one of the more naturally agile limousines in its class.  Excellent electronic safety aids are prepared to guard the limits of its handling and stability very effectively, so you really feel safe and in control of the big LS. Comfort mode brings a beautiful ride over all surfaces.

The suspension is all-independent with ‘high-mount multi-link’ configurations at both ends.  Steel coil springs and adaptive dampers are used on the entry-level model, while adaptive air suspension is standard on other higher-end variants.  The new LS is rear-wheel drive only at entry level, but AWD is optional with mid-range Luxury trim.  AWD is standard on the Premier LS model. Opt for the sporty F-Sport models, and the car comes with four-wheel steering and a speed-dependent variable-ratio steering rack in an effort to give it greater agility.  The sharp handling is very good already, but it is a noticeable improvement in F-Sport guise –should that be a deciding element between models.

Lexus describes the LS as “a reimagined flagship vehicle whose mission is to go far beyond what the world expects from a luxury vehicle”.  And when you do climb on-board there is a breath-taking lavishness of the cars’ cabin.  There is a ‘Pleat package’ which also includes cut glass decorative inlays for the doors that are created in the Japanese ‘kiriko’ style.  You will also get fabric that is hand-pleated to make it look like origami folded paper, and this is quite a beautiful design that sets it apart from Euro rivals (BMW, Jag, Merc and Audi).

Solemnising the new Lexus LS, even as an entry-level, is easy to do.  The base model Lexus LS 500h comes with large eye-catching 20 -inch alloy, striking LED headlights and DRLs, a 12-speaker audio system and even handy 360 degree parking cameras. The next level of trim, Luxury, is probably offers things like four-zone climate control, a leather interior upgrade, a Mark Levinson premium audio system, and heating and ventilation for all occupant seats.  Lay it all on in the ‘Premium’ models and you’ll enjoy a cabin full of Lexus’s swishest materials, all of the latest and best active safety systems, motorised rear sunshades, massaging seats all round, a rear seat entertainment system with its own DVD/Blu-Ray player, a rise-to-meet you air suspension feature, controlled soft closing functions on the doors, and just so much more…

You’ll discover that the instrumentation is all-digital, and the Lexus welcome feature is classy.  You get a head-up display that’s twice the size of any you’ll see in any other car, and there is a 12.3-inch touchscreen with clear graphics for satellite navigation and all other infotainment functions.  Gesture control, touch, and mode quick-fire menu buttons are simple enough to use once you get used to the way it shoots.

Out on the road there are no gripes.  Lexus equips the latest LS 500h with a‘multi-stage hybrid’.  In layman’s terms: you get a 264 kW, 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine and the aid of a 132 kW electric motor.  A very smooth epicyclic power splitter and a four-speed automatic gearbox work in series within a continuously variable transmission to make the new LS, in effect, a 10-speed auto.  Smooth, effortless power is available here.

The Lexus LS 500 is petrol only, and has the new LS running from a standstill through to 100 km/h in around 5.5 seconds.  It uses twin parallel turbos (one on each cylinder bank) to help produce a peak power output of 310 kW at 6000 rpm and 600 Nm of torque from 1600-4800 rpm.  That sort of grunt is creamy and assured for all driving habits.

For what is a big Limo, the 2020 Lexus LS is quite frugal – easily getting 7 litres/100 km on touring duty.  Also, the Lexus limo is good value for money when compared to European rivals.  We’re talking close to $200 k for the fully kitted out premium versions when new, but that’s still better than the big Beemer, Merc and Audi alternatives.

It’s also very safe and comes equipped with knee, curtain and side airbags and plenty of driving assistant aids such as adaptive cruise control, autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane-keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert and a tyre pressure monitoring system.

It is not hard to like the distinctive LS looks, which I think have a modern, artistic design better than any of its rivals.  I guess that comes down to taste and perception, however.  The new Lexus is awash in rich, innovative cabin materials and there is a high equipment level even in the mid-range models.  Back all this up with powerful engine performance and surprisingly agile handling, and you have a very good flagship limo.

The current Lexus LS models include the:

  • LS 500h
  • LS 500

For any more information on the Lexus LS or, for that matter, any other new car, contact one of our friendly consultants on 1300 303 181.  If you’d like some fleet discount pricing (yes even for private buyers!), we can submit vehicle quote requests out to our national network of Lexus dealers and come back with pricing within 24 hours.  Private Fleet – car buying made easy!