2018 Lexus LS 500h comes powered by a 3.5-litre V6 engine combined with two electric motors to produce 354 horsepower; 0-100 kmph claimed in just 5.4 seconds
Toyota’s subsidiary and premium car manufacturer, Lexus, introduced the LS 500h luxury coupe at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show in March. This was the hybrid version of the LS 500, which made its global debut at the Detroit Auto Show at the beginning of last year and it is has entered the Indian market today. It follows the launch of the entry-level NX 300h crossover several days ago.
The LS badge brought Lexus into the limelight of luxury and its original version proved it can indeed compete with the German trio. The bold looking hybrid sedan shares same powertrain with the LC 500h coupe. It gets a 3.5-litre direct-injected dual VVT-I V6 engine under the hood, combined with two electric motors and a 44.6 kW lithium-ion battery.
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The V6 engine is capable of churning out 294 hp of peak power at 6,600 rpm and 348 Nm of peak torque at 4,900 rpm. The multi-stage hybrid powertrain kicks out a combined power output of 354 hp. Transmission duty is done by a 4-speed automatic gearbox offering smooth acceleration. Interestingly, the gearbox will deliver the feel of a 10-speed unit. The eCVT sends power to either the rear axle or Lexus’ E Four electric all-wheel-drive system internationally.
In terms of design, the LS 500h carries similar design language as the regular model. A large signature spindle grille is the most attractive piece of the front fascia. Apart from that, it gets sleek LED headlamps with LED Daytime Running Lights. It also comprises of sharp and stylish side profile with bold alloy wheels and chrome garnishing at different locations.
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The rear fascia too gets wide and wraparound LED taillights with chrome trims. Inside the cabin, it features a 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system and world’s largest head-up display as well at 24 inches. Apart from that, it also gets reclining rear seats with heating, cooling and back massage functions, 48-degree recline for the backrests, etc. The whole interior is inspired by the Japanese Origami art and has 26-speaker Mark Levinson audio with 3D surround sound system.
Rivalling against the likes of Mercedes-Benz S-Class, BMW 7-Series and Audi A8, the Lexus LS500h has generous proportions like the overall length measuring over 5.2 metres and wheelbase at 3.1 metres. It is brought into the country via CBU channel and has massive starting price tag of Rs. 1.77 crore for the Luxury variant (ex-showroom, India). Th mid-spec Ultra Luxury is quoted with a price of Rs. 1.82 crore and the top-level Distinct trim at Rs. 1.93 crore.
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With bookings already begun, the LS 500h has a standard e-CVT transmission driving the rear wheels only for India. It competes against the likes of forthcoming flagship rivals like the new Mercedes-Benz S-Class and Audi A8 – both of them with possible hybrid drivetrain interpretations of their own. However, they are comparatively very less expensive due to the local assembly. Deliveries to commence from April onwards.