The Lexus GS was designed as a performance sedan able to compete in the mid-luxury class. Sold by Lexus in the United States, Europe, and Asia since 1993, the GS includes three generations of mid-size luxury sports sedans. The second generation of GS was produced in 1998, and the third came out in 2006 as the first model to use the Lexus L-finesse styling as a V6, V8, and hybrid model. In Japan, the GS is equivalent to the Toyota Aristo except for engine and transmission pairings.
The GS 300, the first rear-wheel drive sports sedan that Lexus ever produced, was a 3.0-liter 2JZ-GE inline-6 that accelerated to 60 miles per hour in just over nine seconds. The Lexus GS 300's interior had walnut wood trim, leather seating, and a steering wheel with automatic tilt-and-telescoping.
The GS400 came equipped with a UZ-series V8 that took only 5.4 seconds to get to 60 miles per hour, featuring a 5-speed automatic.
The hybrid GS 450h is the first mass-production luxury hybrid car to have rear-wheel drive. The Lexus GS has a 3.5 liter 2GR-FSE V6 engine paired with an electric motor and a continuously variable transmission. This model achieved a Super Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle emissions rating.
The Lexus GS has many safety features that include airbags strategically placed in several places throughout the car, including front and rear-row side curtain airbags, in addition to a number of other places. The GS also features an adaptive front-lighting system, a dynamic radar cruise control system and an optional radar-based pre-collision system. All models offer anti-lock braking, Vehicle Stability Control, brake assist, and electronic brake-force distribution. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the Lexus GS "Good" overall ratings in side and frontal impact tests, as well as 13 out of 14 total rating categories.
The Lexus GS has won a significant number of awards, including the title of highest ranked vehicle in predicted reliability in the luxury car class in 2005 from Consumer Reports. The third generation GS was labeled the best car in its class by AAA in 2005. The GS gets approximately 22 miles per gallon during city driving, and 30 miles per gallon on the highway.
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