Shifting targets

Rather than holding on a likes of a Mercedes-Benz E-class, a Lexus GS now ought to be a closer opposition to a CLS

What’s new?

This is a imperative facelift of a Lexus GS, a rear-wheel-drive executive tavern holding on a BMW 5-series, Jaguar XF and Mercedes-Benz E-class.

Updates embody tweaked front and back ends, and a revamped selection widespread to cope with new dig taxes and a serve of a new entry-level several in a guise of GS200t. While we were expecting a expostulate with this turbocharged GS, it still isn’t accessible for a Thai media to exam drive.

Hence, a GS300h, as tested here, whose 223hp 2.5-litre petrol-electric hybrid and CVT involuntary have been carried over though any technical changes. Now that there’s a 100g/km CO2 division in place for hybrid-powered cars, a GS300h’s rating of 127g/km has done a dig taxation arise from 10 to 20%. In Premium spec, a GS300h now costs 4.83 million baht — a large 540,000 baht some-more than in a likewise specified pre-facelift model.

What’s cool?

This might usually be a midlife revision, though a visible changes are utterly estimable for Lexus fans. The arrow-shaped LED headlights and spindle-like front grille feel some-more conspicuous than ever. And we’re not articulate about a F Sport package nonetheless that is usually accessible for a GS200t and GS350 in Thailand.

Sure, beauty is in a eye of a beholder. But requesting spicier and racier lines to a GS does make clarity since this is ostensible to be Lexus’ sporty homogeneous in a brand’s executive automobile line-up; a grand one is a front-wheel-drive ES saloon.

Although a interior is fundamentally unchanged, there’s a new, good-to-hold steering circle to serve underscore a cabin’s high peculiarity feel. Speaking of this, a GS stays rarely specified with pacifist reserve facilities (10 airbags) and preference equipment not straightforwardly accessible in any of a competition.

On a move, a GS300h is mostly about cruising excellence interjection to a petrol-electric hybrid that can run silently around city and automobile parks for brief moments though spewing any of that black things called CO2.

The electric assistance can also double as a performance-booster to make a GS300h pretty discerning outward a city, where a car’s framework manages to broach both a pretty gentle float and easy handling.

What’s not?

There was a time users could generally accept a effervescent and not-so-instant feel of CVT transmissions, though this specific form of involuntary has now turn most improved in a latest models offering in a mass-market.

Unfortunately, a GS300h’s gearbox hasn’t done any strides notwithstanding still being means to produce a stepless feel in gear-shifting and compelling economy levels to some-more than 15kpl where possible.

Techno wizards might also be unhappy to learn several driver-assist facilities from Lexus’ Safety Sense + package is not accessible in a GS300h; it’s indifferent usually for a pricey GS350 and GS450h models. It contingency also be remembered that a GS itself is some-more of a 2+2 rather than a correct five-seat saloon, for a fifth passenger can find positively no comfort from a high, tough centre chair and extending missile tunnel.

Buy or bye?

Despite some shortcomings like a comparatively idle delivery not suiting a GS’s sporty concept, there is still most to like about this hybrid-powered car. It steers and rides nicely, offers good cruising refinement, decent real-world economy and is still well-equipped opposite a dictated competition.

But a alien standing explains a aloft cost over probable rivals like a 528i and E300 Bluetec Hybrid.

However, if you’ve been considering a some-more singular CLS250 CDI — labelled during 4.49 million baht and an additional 500k for a AMG Premium spec — we could import in a GS300h as an alternative.

Mercedes-Benz has nonetheless to announce new prices for a CLS250 CDI — a taxation rate falls from 35% to 30% underneath new manners this year — though it will still radically be a 4 million baht saloon.

True, a GS was never recognised to be a approach opposition for a CLS. But they share some similarities, including a package appealing some-more for 4 people and sporty looks to feel opposite on a road.

What a GS300h simply can’t compare for a CLS250 CDI is a honestly gratifying pushing experience.

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