Luxury sedan gets an infusion of passion
MONTEREY, California – In their quest to have the new 2013 Lexus GS 350 sedan inextricably linked with all that's sublime and passionate, the company couldn't have chosen a better setting for its launch than a drive along the Monterey coastline ending in an exhilarating afternoon at Laguna Seca Raceway.
Lexus has typically found favour with the quietly well-off, whose good fortune provides luxurious insulation from life's disturbances. Which has rather aptly described the character of their vehicles as well.
But when it comes to the luxury performance sedan segment, the Japanese automaker has failed to ignite the sort of passion necessary to compete against the Germans. With the latest iteration of the GS sedan, Lexus aims to change the perception they've traditionally held of well-crafted, yet ultimately soulless vehicles.
Lexus sums up their new direction with the Japanese phrase "Waku Doki," which loosely translates into "heart-pumping adrenaline rush." Certainly, the claim to a newfound passion and inspired performance started out on the right foot with the sublime LFA supercar. The defining characteristics of the LFA's design language have obviously influenced the new GS – starting with the signature "spindle grille" that has become the new face of Lexus.
Sharp and aggressive, it becomes the focal point from which the rest of the car takes shape. New headlamps with L-shaped LED running lights flank the distinctive grille, and its deep body is saved from slab-sidedness by chiselled character lines culminating in a sharply squared off posterior.