It’s really hard not to like a Lexus. Ever since Toyota decided to create a luxury division, they have been first rate.
In the beginning, and with some models now, we’re talking about you ES 300, they were just Toyotas dressed for dinner. Add a few luxury touches to, say, a Camry and voila, you have an entry-level Lexus.
But the GS 350 best I can tell, is it’s own animal and a lovely one it is.
Inside, lovely leather and very interesting wood are slathered all over the interior. The usual multi-tasking, Bluetooth haunted, Pandora trimmed, info-tainment system offers about anything in the way of driver distraction you could want. Including a computer mouse. Yes you heard me, a mouse.
Yes, the Lexus is solid, fast, and frankly very nice. But in an age when we don’t want kids doing distracting things like texting, phoning or talking to a cameraman when they drive, why in the name of everything sensible did Lexus put a mouse in the car?
Sometimes I with for a push button AM/FM radio and nothing else. OK, maybe a cassette player. They’re coming back, I tell you.
In the beginning, when Nissan and Toyota followed Honda’s lead and created luxury cars, Infiniti was the sporty one. I always looked at them as a rice burning version of BMW, whereas Lexus was more comfy like a Mercedes.
The GS 350 with its 306-horsepower V6 tosses that idea into the dust bin of history.
It is responsive, and the car can be had with either rear or all-wheel-drive; two or four-wheel-steering, and with a conventional V6 or a hybrid version. Literally, every base is covered along with a couple over in the next ball park.
On the road, our standard rear-wheel-drive GS is a joy, carving up the road like a tender steak and keeping you comfy in the bargain.
0-60 takes about 5.6 seconds, and the 4000 pound sedan will sip gas at a rate of 19 city, 29 highway.
At right around $50-large, it isn’t cheap. But then again, it isn’t cheaply done.