Lexus’ flagship LS 460 full-size sedan is available in standard form and as a limousine-like long-wheelbase model that stretches nearly 203 inches from bumper to bumper, 5 inches more than the standard model. Competitors include the BMW 7 Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class. The LS was redesigned for the 2007 model year, and changes are minor for 2008. The optional Advanced Parking Guidance System lets the car park itself and is undoubtedly the car’s most intriguing feature.
A new color — Opaline Pearl — is available for 2008 LS 460s.
Each new Lexus becomes incrementally more sculpted, with market pressure by more adventurous competitors eroding the company’s traditionally conservative lines. The latest LS features an aerodynamically laid-back grille, headlights and windshield at the front, and the hint of a BMW trunk at the rear. Standard aluminum wheels measure 18 inches in diameter, but 19-inch rims are optional.
In the long-wheelbase variant, Lexus aims to replicate the environment of a business jet with optional massaging, 45-degree-reclining rear seats that include an ottoman for leg support. The Executive Class Seating Package, which includes the reclining seats, also features a center console with a tray table, ventilation controls and a drink cooler that divides the two rear seats. The shorter-wheelbase LS 460 has a three-passenger backseat in place of the console and buckets.
Under the Hood
The LS’ 4.6-liter V-8 engine makes 380 horsepower and drives the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission. The engine uses direct, in-cylinder fuel injection along with traditional port fuel injection for a claimed 36 percent reduction in fuel consumption.
Standard safety features include electronically controlled antilock brakes with brake assist and electronic brake-force distribution, an electronic stability system, side-impact airbags for the front seats, side curtain airbags and front knee airbags. Rear-seat side-impact airbags, Lexus’ Pre-Collision System and a rearview camera are optional.