Lexus working on a small hybrid engine for the European version of the GS

Article by Christian Andrei, on November 22, 2011

Lexus is working on a small hybrid engine so that its new GS luxury car could compete with its European rivals that offer higher fuel efficiency. Koji Sato, deputy chief engineer, product planning, told Auto Express that it is developing several solutions so that CO2 emissions will drop. A small hybrid is one of the things being considered.

The launch for the new GS in the UK will take place this summer. Only two versions will be offered: the top-of-the-line GS 450h with a 338bhp 3.5-litre V6 hybrid and the entry-level GS 250 that’s equipped with a 206bhp 2.5-litre V6.

The new GS, a small efficient and low-emissions hybrid, is expected to go up against popular models such as the BMW 520d and Audi A6 2.0 TDI. Lexus currently isn’t planning to make a diesel version. Sato said that Lexus is strongly associated with the hybrid, something that it wants to continue to work on.

There aren’t many details about the new powerplant but it’s believed to be positioned at the range’s entry point. It’s also likely to be a four-cylinder petrol engine coupled to an electric motor.

It’s expected to have a combined power output of around 180bhp. Sato said that this engine’s fuel economy rating and CO2 emissions level will be comparable with those of the BMW 520d. This means that this model would have emissions of about 120g/km of CO2 and have a rating of about 50mpg.

Buyers get big tax savings with this new model due to its low emissions. This makes it more attractive to the market in the UK and Europe, especially to company car drivers.

Exterior Design

Lexus’ new design philosophy will become more evident within the brand’s upcoming line-ups. One of the first to have this unique fusion of style and functionality is the new Lexus GS. The distinctive characteristics consist of the precisely designed exterior, fins and trapezoidal grille that provide superior aerodynamics efficiency.

There’s no doubt about it, the same distinct features enhance the dynamic and confident attitude that the brand is trying to convey. The Lexus GS now has the integrated fins along the side of the taillights. There is also the boot area, which helps optimise the airflow over and out. But aside from these, the impressive airflow is also due to the bumper’s peculiar spindle grille.

Meanwhile, the bumper at the rear now has the central aero fins and diffuser to better manage the underbody airflow. To make it look more amazing, Lexus combined these formulas along with the new headlamps and daytime running lights that come in LED.

As we take a quick glance on side view, the sporty stance is probably the most noticeable of all. This Lexus comes with short overhangs, wide wheel arches and tapered door sills at the lower part. But still, the best qualities we can say (so far at least) are the vehicle’s spaciousness and the dynamic abilities.

On the other hand, Lexus also made use of the latest paint innovation available to make the outlines appear more distinct. They even added some glass flakes on the newly developed paint coatings to make them shinier. Therefore, we can all look forward to new paints that are more radiant and have sharper highlights and well-defined shades real soon.

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