The 2013 Lexus GS will make its formal debut on August 18 at the Parc du Concours in Pebble Beach, California. The production model was expected to arrive soon after Lexus displayed the LF-Gh concept at the New York Auto Show as a teaser. According to sources, the production GS is nearly identical to the LF-Gh concept in terms of looks.
The GS 350, which will soon have its debut in California, is powered by the 3.5-liter V-6 engine that’s used throughout the Lexus portfolio.
It’s believed that there won’t be an eight-cylinder option as the new GS Hybrid, which uses that same V-6 mated to Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive system, will be the range-topping model for now and in the near future. Motor Trend said that the most significant changes are centered on the driving dynamics and sheet metal.
The LF-Gh concept may have a drastically different look from the current model but modifications to its suspension and steering are expected to increase the refinement and agility of the luxury sport sedan.
Those who want a sportier version will be glad to know that Lexus offers an F Sport package, which won’t feature the IS-F’s V-8. Instead, it has been fitted with larger wheels and tires, larger front brakes, and a new four-wheel steering system that can revise the toe setting of the rear wheels and boost cornering ability. Dealerships will get the GS just in time for the beginning of the 2013 model year.
The engineering team behind the design of the new Lexus GS wanted the new model to convey agility and strength. The engineering team also wanted a more fun drive for Lexus GS drivers. To do this, they created a new aerodynamic body that has a stiffer structure and a wider stance. They also threw in a transmission that allows for quicker shifting and a distinct purr coming from the engine and the exhaust.
The re-engineered platform is now more rigid than previous models with the addition of more spot welds as well as the addition of laser welds at specific places. The wider track now has 40 mm more at the front and 50 mm at the back. This further helps the suspension design to give the car a more stable appearance as well as outstanding cornering capabilities.
The new suspension system guides the new Lexus GS with precise cornering. The front has aluminium upper and lower controls that have bigger bushings, while the rear subframe was redesigned to be able to take in the new multi-link suspension. With the modified design, control at the rear end is now enhanced. The stiffer platform and the use of lightweight materials as well as the lighter viscosity oil in the shock absorbers result to faster responses to even the smallest inputs. Aluminium lessens unsprung weight and this makes the car more agile and the ride more comfortable, on top of helping increase the precision of steering and body control. The ventilated disc brakes have four piston aluminum front calipers and have been fitted with the latest electronic improvements to give better braking control and balance.
The devil is in the details
The exterior of the new Lexus GS brings together distinctive style and functionality. It sports a sculpted exterior that hints at the carmaker’s new design philosophy that will be seen more in new models.
The details of the Lexus GS include fins being embedded into the sides of the tail lamps and the boot area being redesigned to direct airflow over the car and go past it. The spindle grille has trapezoidal contours placed into the more athletic front bumper for easier airflow. The signature design feature is combined with high-tech headlights and LED daytime running lamps and gives the car a more confident character. The headlights feature a projector beam design, which gives way to outstanding illumination, and a chiseled look.
In profile, the Lexus GS looks very spacious, with a road-hugging appearance. The lower door sills are tapered and the front overhang is short, giving the GS a moving and dynamic appearance. Meanwhile, the wheel arches give it a more athletic look.
The rear bumper has a diffuser and aero fins to help the control of airflow beneath the body. The rear bumpers also have the L-shaped LED lights that you see up front. All in all, looking at the Lexus GS from the back, you could guess just how high-performing it could be.
Lastly, the paint technology has been improved on, helping make the understated bodylines noticeable and giving the surface a finely buffed look. Glass flakes were mixed into the paint, giving the color high luster and brilliance.
Even the paint technology has been developed to make subtle bodylines more noticeable and for the surface to appear more finely polished. New colours will benefit from glass flakes incorporated into the coating, adding a high level of brilliance. The engineers at Lexus have also come up with an improved coating technology that makes the paint more radiant looking, with an additional metallic texture that helps give the paint sharp and defined highlights.