2014 Lexus GS 450h Hybrid

2014 Lexus GS450h

ADDING MORE PERFORMANCE TO FUEL EFFICIENCY The new 2014 Lexus GS 450h hybrid is an amazing mid-size luxury sport sedan… 

 

It delivers world-class comfort and luxury while enabling me to rocket out to 60mph from a standstill in just 5.6 seconds for amazing performance with EPA fuel economy ratings of 29mpg/city and 34mpg highway, on par with cars with half its power.  My 2014 Lexus GS 450h hybrid came fully loaded including the Luxury Package and it was a seven day test drive that I fully enjoyed.  New this year is a CVT with intelligence transmission that mimics an eight-speed transmission with steering wheel mounted paddle shifters for a more appealing performance ride.   Also new this year is the Blind Spot Monitor gaining Cross Traffic Alert and power folding mirrors, and a new Siri Eyes Free mode with technology from Apple.
2014 Lexus GS450h
Driving the new 2014 GS 450h is smooth and quiet.  The Lexus Hybrid Drive Semi/Parallel system teams the output of an Atkinson cycle 3.5 liter, DOHC, 24-valve, Direct & Port Injection with Dual Continuously Variable Valve timing with intelligence (VVT-i) V6 and Electronic Throttle Control with Intelligence (ECT-i) with a water-cooled permanent magnet electric motor through a planetary-type continuously variable transmission.  Independently or in parallel as needed, the gas engine and electric motor drive the rear wheels.  The high-performance nickel-metal hydride battery pack uses a stacked design to improve trunk space, which is great than even gas-only models of the previous generation GS.
2014 Lexus GS450h Beauty Side LA
Because of its high system torque at all speeds, and fast 0-60mph time of just 5.6 seconds, impressive for a 4,190 pound vehicle, the GS 450h feels more like a V8 to me.  It uses fuel like a four-cylinder engine.  That is just one element in its performance-oriented persona.  Driving enthusiasts looking for more control and a more spirited ride from a hybrid model will find it in the GS 450h, which comes equipped with Lexus Drive Mode selector featuring five driving modes to suit my driving style at the time.  It is a truly unique CVT transmission.  Normal mode offers a balance of efficiency and performance that’s ideal for everyday driving and yields the smoothness driving experience.  Two of the modes focus on fuel economy.  ECO mode sets throttle mapping, seat heating and climate control systems to prioritize energy conservation.  When driving in ECO mode, instrument meter lighting changes to blue and the left meter shows Charge/ECO/Power.  The EV mode allows the car to be driven short distances, under certain circumstances, using only the electric motor.  Driving enthusiasts will love the SPORT and SPORT+ modes.  SPORT mode transforms the car’s personality, with sharper throttle response and transmission control that mimics the stepped shifting of an eight-speed automatic transmission (compared to six steps in the 2013 model), instrument meter lighting changes appropriately to red when driving in SPORT S mode and the left meter shows a true tachometer.  Selecting SPORT+ mode also engages a sport setting for the Adaptive Variable Suspension, electric power steering system and Vehicle Dynamic Integrated Management (VDIM).  In this mode the GS 450hp drives like no other hybrid sedan, adding a sporting edge to the handling while maintaining the classic Lexus smoothness and comfort.  In Sport and Sport+ it feels like a turbo is pushing extra torque into the drivetrain.  I can really feel the boost in power and acceleration.  By placing the leather-wrapped stick shifter to the left into sequential mode I can click 1-8 gears using the paddle shifters for true spirited driving pleasure.  To further enhance fuel efficiency, the engine shuts down when stopped and switches over to EV until I reach 25mph when the gas engine restarts giving more power as needed.
2014 Lexus GS450h Engine
Long a leader in user technology that’s easy to use, Lexus has new standard integrated Siri Eyes Free Mode with technology licensed from Apple, in the 2014 GS 450h.  Compatible with the iPhone and iPhone 5 models forward, Siri lets me call contacts, select and play music from iTunes, get turn-by-turn navigation through Siri and Apple maps, and much more.  To help keep my eyes on the road and hands on the wheel, Siri can read notifications, read calendar information and allow me to add reminders, calendar appointments and notes.  Also keeping my eyes on the road is the optional ‘head up’ display that shows my speed, mode, and radio station selected.
2014 Lexus GS450h Beauty Rear
The suspension gives me a feeling of smoothness and great responsiveness with the fully independent setup.  Up front is a double-wishbone setup with aluminum high-mount upper control arms that reduce unsprung weight with enhanced agility, sway damping, ride comfort, body control and steering precision.  Also up front are coil springs, adaptive variable shocks and a stabilizer bar.  The rear multi-link setup also includes aluminum control arms, stabilizer bar and adaptive variable shocks.  Rock steady at fast highway speeds and highly maneuverable in slow city traffic, the new GS 450h also cuts through steep curving roads with ease, remaining flat and zooming out of the apex thanks to its rear wheel drive configuration.  The electric power steering system features speed-sensing rack & pinion geometry for precise and quick reaction to my inputs.  It gives me an excellent feel for the road.
2014 Lexus GS450h Beauty Left
Quickly slowing the new GS 450h down from speed are large, electronically controlled 4-wheel disc brakes that are modified to provide greater responsiveness.  Up front are 13.1 inch vented discs clamped with large four-piston calipers and 12.2 inch vented discs clamped with large single-piston calipers in the rear.  Standard Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM) anticipates loss of vehicle control and governs all of the car’s dynamic handling systems-ABS, BA, VSC, and TRAC-with the electronic throttle control system.  VDIM employs these systems collectively and seamlessly to help make corrections while allowing high dynamic capability. The system also provides a limited slip differential effect for maximum take-off traction.
As part of the Luxury Package that my test GS 450h came with are the large, 18X8 inch 9-tuning fork styled spokes, light alloy wheels wrapped with Dunlop 235/45R18 inch Sport SP low-rolling resistance, high-performance tires for a smooth, quiet ride with excellent traction.  Taken together, the new 2014 GS 450h rides and drives like no other mid-size luxury performance hybrid on the market, and I haven’t yet written about the comfortable, luxurious, exotic, contemporary connected and safe interior.
The cabin of the car is nothing short of plush.  The standard 10-way front power seats and rear seats are trimmed in soft perforated leather.  The front bucket seats also feature power thigh support, lumbar support and power adjustable side bolsters to keep me and my front passenger snug and tight during spirited driving times.  Furthermore, each front bucket seat features heating/AC ventilation.  The standard matte Bamboo and aluminum trim is exotic and also features leather door trim, center console, rear console, and single-stitching vinyl on the dashboard top.  Also standard is a heated steering wheel, power rear sunshade and a high-intensity interior heater.  Rear seat passengers are treated to no less regally with deeply scalloped seats providing excellent support and generous legroom for long trips, dual cupholders, reading lights and a center console, armrest and storage box.  Lexus puts more personal control in climate control with the new GS 450h.  A ‘first-in-class’ technology, the energy-saving S-Flow automatic climate control system detects if there is a front passenger and directs airflow only to the occupied front seat or seats.  Also new for 2014, the Climate Concierge feature, similar to that in the Lexus LS flagship sedan, personalizes climate control for passengers.  In the GS 450h, the system automatically monitors the temperature of three separate climate zones and adjusts not only the fans, but also the temperature of the seats and steering wheel according to preset preferences.  Each zone will achieve its pre-set level of comfort as quickly as possible.  The new GS 450h features advanced connectivity, easy controls through touch and voice.  User technology works for me, not the other way around.  The next-generation Remote Touch with one-push confirmation is standard and enables smooth, intuitive control for climate, audio, phone, the optional navigation system and more.  A standard rear back-up camera adds security and convenience.  Located front and center, and central to that technology, a vibrant high-resolution control display provides easy access to a multitude of vehicle features.  Equipping the GS 450h with the optional navigation system adds a large 12.3 inch multimedia display with split-screen capability.  I and my front passenger can view a large map display on the left while also monitoring audio, climate or other vehicle information on the right.  Lexus has expanded connectivity in its vehicles while helping to reduce driver distraction.  The foundation of this capability, Lexus Enform, can make a compatible Bluetooth smartphone even smarter.  The available Enform service, with Destination Assist, eDestination, and App Suite, comes with the Navigation system.  Lexus Enform provides access to the subscription-free App Suite.  These voice-enabled apps lets me search the internet through Bing, make restaurant reservations through OpenTable, get movie tickets via MovieTickets.com, listen to internet radio including Pandora and iHeartRadio, search business reviews on Yelp, and check in on Facebook Places.  The Lexus analog clock is carved from a single ingot of aluminum for a smooth consistent look and uses LED indicators.  More standard equipment and the Luxury Package inside not mentioned above includes windshield wiper deicer, water-repellent front door glass, manual side sunshades, power tilt/telescopic, leather/Bamboo-wrapped sport steering wheel, one-touch power tilt-slide moonroof, auto-dimming reaview mirror, heated/power-folding/self-dimming sideview mirrors, 3-zone climate control, Lexus Premium Audio system with advanced voice control, HD radio with iTunes tagging, DVD/CD player, USB audio plug, Sirius XM satellite radio, 12-speakers including a subwoofer, all express up/down windows, power door locks, rear air-vents behind the front center console and air-vents on the outside of the rear bench seat, push button start/stop, illuminated aluminum door skid plates, grab handles above each door, rain-sensing wipers/headlight washers, Lexus Homelink, gloss black door switch plates, 3-person driver/front passenger memory, cruise control, map pockets behind the front seatbacks, front console with dual cupholders/armrest/storage box, storage slots in each door, front/rear floormats, white LED interior illumination, LED adaptive headlights, a rear pull-down center console with controls for the audio system, climate and rear power sunshade.  Other options in my test GS 450h included the Heads Up Display for $900.00, Blind Spot Monitor for $700.00, one-touch power trunk for $400.00 and the Intuitive Park Assist for $500.00.
2014 Lexus GS450h Dashboard
The GS 450h comes with 10-airbags, standard including a knee airbag for both me and my front seat passenger, seat-mounted side airbags for outboard rear seats, and side-curtain airbags for all four outboard occupants, whiplash injury lessening front seats reduce the space between the occupants head and headrest to help limit excessive head movement, 5-3-point safety belts with front pretensioners/load limiters, LATCH system for child seats, Safety Connect automatic collision notification, stolen vehicle locater, front/rear crumple zones, steel beams in each door, emergency assist button (SOS), roadside assistance and a tire pressure monitor system.
2014 Lexus GS450h Front Seats
Sharing the dramatic new design of the GS 350 gas model, the GS 450hp conveys its hybrid identity with elegant subtlety.  In front is the Lexus signature spindle grille with black slats and chrome surround.  Just below is another air-intake with intakes at the sides that channel air into the big, 4-piston brake calipers.  The aluminum hood is deeply scalloped to channel air up and over the steeply raked windshield A-pillars. The 3-lamps design combines high and low beam LED lamps and turn signals in a single horizontal row.  L-shaped LED daytime running lamps help with daytime/nighttime safety for other drivers.  New LED foglamps are set inside the edge of the lower front fender with chrome surround.  The front spoiler helps manage air underneath the car and the rear shows the same gas model’s L-shaped LED tail lamps and stabilizing fins in the bumpers lower section that also conceals the dual exhaust tailpipes. The front fascia trunk lid shows the large blue (hybrid) Lexus badges as well as on the bottom of the rear doors.  The sweeping, coupe-like profile shows a full-perimeter chrome strip around the greenhouse, bodycolor pull-out door handles, and deep lower side extensions that enhance handling and stability.
2014 Lexus GS450h Cluster ECO 2014 Lexus GS450h Cluster Sport
I absolutely enjoyed my seven-day test drive of the new, 2014 Lexus GS 450h.  I traveled more than 400 miles in the city and on the highway getting 32.6 mpg from the trip computer.  High styling, high levels of driving engagement, high levels of comfort, luxurious, connectivity and safety are the hallmarks of this very unique high-performing luxury midsize hybrid sedan.  Enjoy the ride!
COPYRIGHT: 2014: HARVEY SCHWARTZ
SPECIFICATIONS
Wheelbase: 112.2 inches
Length: 190.7 inches
Width: 72.4 inches
Height: 57.3 inches
Track: f/r-62/62.6 inches
Ground clearance: 5.5 inches
Headroom: f/r-38/37.8 inches
Legroom: f/r-42.3/36.3 inches
EPA cargo volume: 13.2 cu. ft.
Weight distribution: f/r-51/49
Fuel tank: 17.4 gallons
Coefficient of drag: 0.27
EPA fuel economy: 29mpg/city, 34mpg/highway
Price: $59,600.00/$69,090.00 loaded as tested