2015 Lexus GS 450h

The Test Track Was 1 Million Miles Long
January 12, 2015 Updated: January 12, 2015

If I could sum up in a short paragraph my impressions of this car, a car that engineers tested for a million miles before manufacturing it, this is what I would say.

The GS 450h is powered by a 3.5-liter Atkinson cycle V6 paired with the Lexus Hybrid Drive, while Adaptive Variable Suspension provides control. This hybrid vehicle gets 29-city/34-highway/31-combined estimated mpg. You get 338 total system horsepower, delivering 0-60 in 5.6 seconds. A Matte Bamboo interior trim helps develop a luxury appeal, while lower valance helps conceal the exhaust.

While the outside screams performance, the inside is breathtakingly beautiful.

While the outside screams performance, the inside is breathtakingly beautiful. Ambient light greets you, then envelops your pores.

The nucleus inside is the “Climate Concierge,” which is a very sophisticated climate control system that manages all aspects of the thermal comfort in the cabin, combining multi-zone air and seat temperature controls.

We had cold weather in Texas this week, offering ice and snow and low, low temperatures like most of the country. Even penguins would be a little chilled in this weather. But the GS 450h stayed the course, while staying out of the ditches. Performance was measured by a safe arrival as opposed to quickness.

The optional full-color Head-up Display can project key information onto the windshield. Navigation is simple to use by giving directions, and audio information, vehicle speed, current gear, and technology are all within your line of sight.

The GS handled superbly. You are connected to the world with all the great technologies from Lexus and connected to the road by the likes of 18-inch 5-spoke alloy wheels and driving mode selection.

The GS 450h does not have too many option packages available, but it does have several individual options.

Suggested manufacturer’s retail price was $61,300.

I must confess, I was a little surprised by the over $60,000 price, yet items like Pre Collision System with Driver Attention Monitor, Dynamic Cruise Control, Lane-Keep Assist with Lane-Departure Warning, Blind Spot Monitor, and Rear Cross Traffic Alert are all optional instead of standard. Features mentioned above would add another $3,200 to the price. For example, Blind Spot Monitor alone costs $700. A vehicle over $60,000 should have at least some of those safety features in the original MSRP.

The GS has three interior colors to choose from: Flaxen, Black, and Light Gray perforated leather. Matte Bamboo was the only trim offered for the GS 450h.

Nine exterior colors are available, including Deep Sea Mica and Atomic Silver. My test vehicle was Rivera Red.

Height: 57.3 inches
Width: 72.4 inches
Wheelbase: 112.2 inches
Overall length: 190.7 inches

4-year/50,000-mile Basic Warranty
8-year/100,000-mile Hybrid-Related Components Warranty
6-year/70,000-mile Powertrain Warranty
6-year/Unlimited mileage Corrosion Perforation Warranty

Durhl Caussey writes a car column read around the world. He may be reached at this paper or dcaussey@sbcglobal.net.