What makes a great car? It has to be fast, reliable and fantastic looking. It should be air dynamic and offer comfort to the driver. It should also submit to road safety standards.
The first thing that strikes you when you come across one of these beasts is the design. And strike is an understatement when you see the 2016 Lexus GS F.
The Lexus GS F is gloriously sleek in design and comes in a variety of eye catching colors. Designers went above and beyond when they drew up this dreamily gorgeous vehicle. The smooth aerodynamic vehicle is sure to turn heads and remain the main topic for gossip for quite some time.
Let’s Talk Features
The GS F boasts of a 471bhp 5.0-litre V8 engine where its German competitors had something slightly bigger up their sleeve with the M5’30 Jahre’ s 592bhp, the E63 AMG S producing 577bhp and RS6 delivers 552bhp.
The GS F produces its peak torque of 391lb ft between 4,800rpm and 5,600rpm, and a maximum power at a lofty 7,100rpm. Even though the GS F has quite a bit of catching up to do when it comes to its competitors, the car is definitely not to underestimate.
When it comes to cabin and seat style, the GS F definitely outshines all its competitors. The Lexus GS F has two toned cream-and-black seats that will make anyone go “whoa… that’s gorgeous”.
The cabin sets a benchmark in the luxury performance sedan category. The dash has a mixture of analog and digital gauges that are very easy to read and take in at a single glance, a very good feature for those who like to venture on unknown roads speedily and elegantly.
Lexus had functionality in mind when they installed the navigation screen; the electronic gadgetry is easy to understand.
The cabin is a pleasing mix of Alcantara and Carbon trim with the pedals, switches and knobs placed strategically. Everything is trimmed down smoothly for optimized elegance and grace.
A Mark Levinson audio system is built into the car. The Mark Levinson uses Clari-Fi Music Restoration Technology that professionally analyzes audio files while on playback, and restoring the digital files lost in compression. When fired up, the audio system provides clear sound levels and is said to be one of the best sounding car audio systems.
Hitting the Road
The sound of the well-tuned NA motor at wide open throttle when it hits the road will give you goose bumps all over. The 5.0-liter engine can run all the ways to its indicated 7,100 RPM redline, effortlessly.
The V8 performance engine has a fiery roar to it that is sure to send high amounts of adrenaline pumping through your veins as you accelerate down long roads, but the active sound control of this Lexus beauty augments the engine sounds through the front and rear speakers as well. The same augments are done by several manufacturers, all with varying degrees of authenticity and success. The jury is out as to whether this is really the way forward for performance cars like this that already have a tuneful block.
Those who were skeptical about the Lexus GS F’s active sound control abilities quickly changed their minds after their first drives in a car with such a system. The augment does a great job at letting through a good engine note while cancelling out bad ones. The sound from outside the car is also good so you will not be going around thinking you sound like a badass when in fact you sound like you’re driving a diesel.
The GS F does not come with an active suspension but Lexus fans need not worry when venturing onto roads that are rippled. Engineers tuned the suspension with the right blend of compliance and stiffness that made the 4,000+ lbs car easy to drive with speed but doesn’t punish you on roads with lots of twists and turns. It offers great steadiness and control.
The GS F has a new Torque Vectoring Differential (TVD). TVD basically opens drift with an electronically operated clutch pack on every output shaft, with an overdrive gear allowing each wheel to turn faster than its counterpart.
Many cars on the market comes with their own version of TVD that use brakes to slow one wheel while allowing the other to spin faster and increase or decrease steering response. Most TVD systems fall short when you start driving them hard, the Lexus system, however, is self-defeating. Instead it increases the speed of the wheel to aid in turning.
The Lexus TVD features 3 operation modes:
Default operating mode—provides a fine-tuned balance of firmness and agility.
Slalom showcases agility and nimble steering response
Track emphasizes total control even during high-speed circuit driving.
Lexus’ TVD works great with the GS F’s beefed-up suspension for optimized handling around swift turns.
The GS F also boasts of an eight-speed Sport Direct Shift automatic transmission.
The gearbox comes with a torque converter lockout clutch that directly connects the engine to the transmission aiding performance.
Our Final Opinion
Lexus fans demanded they deliver a vehicle that caters for their sport senses and Lexus responded with its GS F. It is luxurious, fast, safe and definitely challenges cars on a higher level than it is. The GS F isn’t a groundbreaker, but sure narrows the gap between it and its German competitors.
Lexus is looking to sell 2000 of its GS Fs in the United States yearly, which is a sensible goal considering that they sold more than 300,000 cars last year as they pursued their goal to be on the same level as their European luxury car counterparts, BMW and Mercedes-Benz.
While the newest Lexus GS F can do better in terms of horsepower to be one of the world’s top performing cars, it more than makes up for this with its exceptional features, lighter curb weight and a shockingly lower price.
Want a second opinion? See what AutoGuide thought in this video: