2008 Lexus LS600hL Hybrid Review — Autosavant | Autosavant

25 Мар 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »
LEXUS LS600HL

2008 Lexus LS600hL Review

By Chris Haak

been trying to get my hands on an to test for a while.  I’ve extensive seat time in every vehicle in Toyota’s from the Corolla S to the IS350; the Scion xD to the Sequoia and Tundra.  those vehicles are “just I mean, the IS350 was a really fun car to but it was just a big engine in a small car happened to enjoy being around on back roads.  I an LS600hL so that I could see Toyota’s state-of-the-art was.  I had high expectations for the  it not only represents the flagship of automotive empire, but basically the best that Toyota can do building a luxury car on par with Mercedes and BMW 7-series.  Also, the car had be pretty great considering its price tag.

The Lexus LS is a car even in its standard form; the wheelbase (which manifests mostly in the cavernous back available in the conventionally-powered LS460 the LS460L) makes a big car even The car appears perhaps longer and than it is because it sits low to the ground. I find the LS to be arguably the attractive Lexus – in fact, the attractive Toyota product – it has some attractive lines and has a fairly original shape.  It Lexus’ so-called “L-Finesse” language with the brand’s cars, but seems to feel the comfortable in its clothes.  I attribute the relative styling success to its (it doesn’t look squashed or like the IS does thanks to its as well as the fact that has had a chance to evolve to the point the LS is the newest sedan in the Lexus Unlike the first-generation LS, which was conservative, and unlike the last-generation BMW which was unashamedly unconservative, I that the LS strikes an appropriate between the conservatism expected in an car’s style with a to make the car’s design as and appealing as possible.  The LS succeeds a styling standpoint because the part of the car’s styling is an obvious knockoff is the Bangle-like bulge; otherwise, the only thing about the styling is Lexus made its front drive ES350 look a too similar to the LS for my comfort.  The LS600hL has subtle hybrid badging to let the know that you’re the most expensive of Lexus

If there’s one key theme that manages to hammer home time you spend seat in the LS600hL, it’s the car’s attention to detail.  ‘Attention to doesn’t even touch on how some of this car’s are.  Things that occurred to me as a problem have addressed with this such as the indignities of re-opening a door that didn’t properly (all four will close themselves if they weren’t closed or moving a front seat anchor by hand (there’s a electrical up/down switch by the door handle to power the up and down).  The trunk doesn’t electrically release; it also opens completely, and with a of a button inside the trunklid, also close electrically.  All positions, are, of course, heated and cooled, and all four recline.  The front seats power bottom cushion to allow both short and occupants to ride in comfort, and the on the seats is the softest (and vinyl-like) of any I’ve experienced side of a Rolls Royce

Other nice touches in the include a velvety-soft headliner high-gloss (real) wood nice ambient lighting, a navigation/information screen, and a booming Mark Levinson reference system.  The audio system a hard drive for storing files, a CD changer, XM Satellite with NavTraffic, and AM/FM.  My vehicle was also equipped the Premium Luxury Package II, to me is a must-have if you’re going to six figures on a car.  This package includes rear seats (slide, recline, and headrests), rear seat system with motorized video screen, rear control panel in the center power rear door (the backlight sunshade is Oh, and it also includes the well-publicized Parking Guidance System; this is the car that “can itself.”

The self-parking feature, clearly an interesting conversation trick (“What are you driving week?” “A Lexus LS600hL – the car can parallel park itself.” ok.”) honestly serves little practical value.  not a matter of pulling next to the car of the empty space and pushing a and letting the car do its thing.  Instead, you to pull up to that spot of the empty space, put the car into activate the parking guidance with a button on the navigation then aim the target using on the navigation screen.  Finally, “OK” on the navigation screen the system.  The driver then has to the brake, and the car will turn the wheel automatically as needed to get the car its spot.  If you touch the gas pedal or the wheel, the parking is cancelled.  pretty neat technology (my year old was impressed by the steering turning itself when we it together), but in the real world, just not practical.  Think this:  parallel parking is easier in the suburbs than in areas because of the extra and lighter traffic, so a system this isn’t needed.  In an area, parallel parking is a fairly high-stress task there’s bound to be a line of trying to get around a parking and the spaces are often a little too Frankly, I couldn’t imagine it would be like to go through the required to use the system in the LS600hL in a setting just because the is so convoluted.  If you know how to parallel a car, it’s probably or four times quicker to do it than to let the Advanced Parking System do it for you.  With the sonar parking assist on the bumpers, old fashioned manual parking isn’t that anyway.

The Lexus LS600hL is an extraordinarily car.  The seats are some of the I’ve experienced (though not supportive in curves) and made me like every time I into the car, I could drive for hours.  Being a is, of course, electrically assisted, but was better than average for power steering systems it felt better than a Sienna’s 100% hydraulic The LS600hL also comes standard air suspension, which has modes (comfort, sport, and that seemed to do a decent job of the car’s substantial heft control, but the laws of physics be repealed.  The air suspension automatically ride height based on the of passengers and cargo, and the driver can press a button to raise the of the car for driving on perhaps stone or snow-covered roads.

Under the is both a 5.0 liter V8 and two electric combined output is a substantial 438 although this output (13 horsepower than the Dodge SRT8 and 18 more than the XF Supercharaged) has to contend with a very heavy car.  other full hybrids, the is capable of driving on electric only at low speeds if the traction is sufficiently charged and the engine is up.  One enhancement that car in particular has, though, is an “EV activated by a button on the dash keeps the engine off until you 25-30 miles per hour or the gas pedal too hard.  The car courteously a warning in the instrument cluster’s center before it deactivates EV (telling you why it’s doing so, as Transitions between electric and modes are smoother than any hybrid I’ve driven Camry Hybrid, Durango perhaps due to the inherent silky of the Lexus V8.

Although the transitions between are better than in other they still are detectable.  the car’s CVT gives the unusual of the car jumping into a relatively engine speed and staying as the rush of acceleration takes Full throttle acceleration more interesting sensations; the motors help the car with torque off the line than expect, then the gas engine over.  The sensation is similarly when asking the car to kick for a passing maneuver on a two-lane torque comes on sooner expected in a rush.  Straight speed is absolutely effortless; at one I thought I was going about 70 on wind noise and how much I had my foot into the floor, but a at the speedometer showed – let’s say a lot more than 70.  The noise duped me because the car is so quiet; sound insulation plus tricks like windows help with Still, the car’s acceleration is not as as a conventionally-powered vehicle would be; lack of linearity – which found to be a hallmark of all four I’ve spent time – is somewhat out of character in such a expensive luxury car.


When I took the LS600hL to my backroad spot for a quick in sport mode, I was let down by the 19″ tires, which literally when turning the steering just one inch off center (I had to the window down to hear naturally).  The car’s weight did its best to obey the laws of in spite of the air suspension’s best to do otherwise.  Finally, a few minutes of acceleration and deceleration on my backroad absolutely killed the traction charge state, taking it about 7/8 charge to 1/4 charge.

I about 19 miles per gallon in fuel economy, which is the EPA’s 20 city/22 highway conventionally-powered LS460L is rated at 16 highway), but the city driving I did wasn’t extremely slow traffic, so I wasn’t able to enough advantage of the electric of the hybrid drivetrain to improve my mileage.

Pricing of the Lexus starts at $104,765 including My test vehicle had the aforementioned Premium Luxury Package II, the Lexus Pre-Collision System and Radar Cruise, and the $240 Accessory Package (trunk cargo net, and wheel The total tab was $115,425.  That’s a lot of but this is a lot of car.  Short of contemporary features such as departure warning/prevention, or the Mercedes-Benz that allows the car to move in to bumper traffic without the touching the pedals, the car has pretty everything that a modern luxury car is expected to have, real leather trim on the and the tops of the door panels.  if I had the means to afford a $115,425 I don’t think I’d buy this the LS460 gives perhaps 75% of the car for 60% of the (starting at $69,925 for 2009).  If all I did was highway mileage by myself or with only adult without much luggage, I’d to spend every day driving an But I have more appreciation for a car can handle curves and has a more ride, so a big car like the LS600hL not be on my shortlist. Boy, do I wish I had car a week earlier for a weekend 12 hours on the highway, though.  The big guy have truly been in its in that situation.

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Chris is Autosavant’s Managing He has a lifelong love of everything having grown up as the son of a car dealer. A father of two sons, Chris is in the process of indoctrinating them the world of cars and trucks.

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