2013 Lexus GS Preview

FAST FACTS
  • Completely redesigned for 2013
  • Gas and hybrid versions are available
  • New model features Lexus updated grille treatment
  • Wider chassis and more trunk space
  • Power and fuel efficiency slightly improved in standard engine

Introduction

The Lexus GS 350 is the luxury division's "executive car," a mid-luxe vehicle with performance features. It's available with a conventional V-6 engine; the hybrid model is called the GS 450h. The GS 350 is available in a single trim with many option packages, in rear-wheel or all-wheel drive (RWD or AWD). The Lexus GS competes with luxury midsize cars such as the BMW 5 Series, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Audi A6, and Infiniti M37.

Exterior Features

The 2013 Lexus GS is available in nine exterior colors. Standard exterior equipment includes 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic xenon headlights, fog lights, sunroof, keyless entry and ignition, and auto-dimming mirrors.

Interior Features

Standard interior features include leather upholstery and woodgrain trim, 10-way power driver's seat, dual-zone climate control, 12-speaker surround-sound system, 8-inch controls display with touchpad interface, and Bluetooth connectivity. Upholstery is available in nine colors, with availability depending on the exterior color. The GS has 14.3 cubic feet of trunk space.

Optional Features

The optional equipment on the Lexus GS comes mainly in the form of four option packages. The Premium package includes rain-sensing wipers, heated and ventilated front seats, power rear sunshade, navigation system, 12.3-inch high-resolution split-screen multimedia display, heated steering wheel, various infotainment and communications apps, high-intensity interior heater, headlight washers, windshield wiper de-icer, blind-spot monitoring system, parking assist, and 18-inch wheels. The F Sport with Cold Weather package adds special exterior styling, 19-inch wheels, 16-way driver's seat, adaptive variable suspension, Sport S+ drive mode, black headliner, and striated aluminum interior trim. A Mark Levinson 17-speaker Premium Surround Sound Audio System is added to an enhanced F Sport package. The Luxury package reverts to the non-sport front seats but adds heat to the rear seats, wood and leather trim to the steering wheel and shift knob, and Linear Espresso wood interior trim. The Luxury package also includes 3-zone automatic climate control, 18-way power front seats with memory, rear-door sunshades, adaptive front lighting, and semi-aniline leather interior trim. Individual options include a remote engine starter, glass breakage sensor, upgraded 18-inch wheels with all-weather tires, wheel locks, carpet trunk mat, cargo net, paint protection film, rear bumper appliqué, all-weather floor mats, rear lip spoiler, and illuminated doorsills.

Under the Hood

The 2013 Lexus GS 350 is powered by a 3.5-liter, 306-horsepower V-6 engine that produces 277 lb.-ft. of torque. It works with a 6-speed automatic transmission with manual shifters. The GS 450h features a hybrid drivetrain consisting of a combination of a V-6 engine and electric motor, which generates up to 338 total horsepower.

Fuel Economy

EPA fuel-economy estimates for the 2013 Lexus GS are:

  • GS 350 with RWD: 19/28/23 mpg (city/highway/combined)
  • GS 350 with AWD: 19/26/21 mpg
  • GS 450h: 29/34/31 mpg

Safety

All 2013 Lexus GS models feature front and rear side air bags, side curtain air bags, dual front knee air bags, anti-lock disc brakes, stability control, and traction control. Safety Connect telematics service is also standard. Other safety features accompany various option packages. The GS 450h includes a proximity warning system for pedestrians and cyclists.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has not yet released its safety ratings for the 2013 Lexus GS. In tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the GS received "Good" ratings--the Institute's highest--for frontal-offset, side-impact, and rear-impact crash protection, as well as for roof strength. Additionally, the Institute named the Lexus GS 350 a "Top Safety Pick" for 2013.

Technology

The Lexus GS 450h employs Toyota's pioneering hybrid technology. It also features a warning system for pedestrians and cyclists who might not hear the car approaching if it's running on electricity. The vehicle proximity notification system puts out a low sound, so subtle that it's hardly perceived as a noise. This sound changes in pitch to accord with the vehicle's acceleration and deceleration.