Lexus LS600hL hybrid | Business Jet Traveler

16 Фев 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Lexus LS600hL hybrid

the LS600hL, Lexus has given the propulsion system popularized by the Prius some serious and cloaked it in luxury robes. The h for the hybrid V8/electric motor that drives all four and the L is for long wheelbase, which the expansive but not quite Maybachian passenger area.

Perhaps about whether to flaunt the delivered to the wheels or the vehicle’s to greenness, Lexus has chosen to hybrid badges so small and out of (on the bottom of the rear doors) they border on invisible. The deck spells out LS600hL, but its is probably lost on most.

of messages, one has to wonder what car’s statement is. A luxury will strike some as absurd, given the premise a $120,000, 438-hp, 2.5-ton can’t be seen to be treading on the planet. Another perspective is to this vehicle as providing the of a luxury guzzler on the energy and atmospheric footprint of a lowlier Another verdict might be, new, it’s the top Lexus, clever as sin and I want one.

with a similarly equipped that comes only a gasoline-fueled V8, the LS600hL hybrid a premium of $32,660, so clearly vehicle will not recoup its cost in gas savings. My local dealer told me his first buyer wanted the car for three it is the most expensive Lexus; it has drive; and his would be the first in the The dealer predicted that the process behind most sales would be similar.

Over the course of three in a prototype LS600hL that lent me in August, I searched for undeniably ingenious car’s by driving it 900 miles. Since our includes a 2007 Prius, a LS430 and a 1991 LS400, I was to compare the LS600 hybrid both its propulsive inspiration and its in the luxury sedan lineage.

as I admire how the Prius fulfills its it is of course a lumpy little beside the LS600, but after a start it has suddenly become because its unique body needs no badges to proclaim its As of late summer, Toyota has more than 110,000 in 2007, and it was the best-selling car in the U.S. in with sales of 16,062, up 44 over the same month year. How mainstream is the Prius? The day, I saw a black one sporting and flame decals. Behold, the

As a driving experience, the LS600 is a improvement over the already and adequately powerful (290-hp V8) The new car’s electronic steering is precise, and its three suspension offer taut (sport), the LS430 standard (a nameless switch setting) or comfort produces a more wallowing than the masterfully damped LS400). As the driver, I preferred the sport mode; a dozen who rode as passengers in the car unanimously the intermediate mode over the mode.

A BMW enthusiast hoping to me to buy his 530i recently dismissed the LS as being designed by Japanese Granted, the BMW is more exhilarating to but there should also be no how difficult it is to engineer a car as smooth and as an LS and how well Lexus has succeeded in its

The right rear seat in the is for the alpha passenger, since its (once the front passenger has been motored fully include a retractable leg-rest, table, recline and massage. The rear seat offers and either throne is comfortable for a DVD in the screen that swings out of the With the touch of a button, emerge from the door and parcel shelf to cover the to the sides and rear. The  appointments in our test car-from the leather and ash woodwork to the buttons and handles-were flawless, making passenger compartment a fine to cover the miles to and from a jet’s cabin.

Brilliant Systems

The driver has at his the expected array of gadgetry, some peculiar to this As well as such brilliant as distance-maintaining cruise control by a signal transmitted through the Lexus grille emblem) and the LS hybrid presents the driver pictograms and bar charts that what is driving the wheels and how In a nutshell, the hybrid synergy captures energy that otherwise be lost overboard coasting and braking and stores it in metal hydride batteries the rear seats that not drive the electric propulsion but also encroach significantly on space.


Each 50 watt-hours of energy earns an E on the consumption bar which is updated every (every five minutes in a Long stretches of powered on the level earn no Es, but the coasting and of driving in traffic do create to be recaptured. In the absence of downhill or braking, the gas engine will drive the motor as a generator to top up the batteries.

Even on the gas-powered LS, the engine is when idling, with the tach to confirm that it is Pull up at a stoplight in the Prius, and the noticeable automatic shutting of the gas engine screams engine to the pilot in you. Like the gas LS, the Lexus keeps its mechanical to itself, too.

Both the initially move from a on electric propulsion, but the kicking in of the gas with sufficient demand the right foot is prominent in the Prius. In the LS, it is so subdued as to pass unnoticed were it not for the rev counter off the pin and a stronger push in the back. The has no tachometer, sending word of combustion to its occupants’ ears

The LS600hL is ingenious, spacious and but its hybridness somehow seems relevant than the Prius’. On a Sunday night, I was able to set the control of the LS600hL on 60 mph in Syracuse, and maintain that speed the entire 287 miles to home in New Jersey. The car returned 31.01 beating only narrowly the mpg my LS430 achieved from its 290-hp V8 when left to along the same trip at the same speed. The difference is the LS600hL is hauling more (5,049 pounds versus the 4,000) and has a lot more power to if mpg is of secondary interest.

For the whole test, which one 126-mile round-trip commute to (some high-speed segments, crawling in traffic) and local running errands and scouting locations in upstate New York, the returned an average of 24.52 again about the same as  my manages on similar runs.

One of the of driving a Prius is the feeling of in a small sailboat rather a powerboat and getting some propulsive help (a debatable given the mystery surrounding the of replacement NiMH batteries). The for a light touch with right foot is instantaneous, on the energy consumption/ regeneration While it was satisfying on the LS600 to see the bars peg out at 40 for eight or nine minutes, the hybridness was less than the superb comfort of the

The most direct comparison of all is the LS460L, which is almost the same car with a 4.6-liter, V8 solo under the hood, only the rear wheels an eight-speed transmission. The hybrid 717 pounds more, is 0.1 seconds from zero to 60, gets mpg EPA city/highway versus the non-hybrid’s and costs $32,660 more. to the EPA’s standard formula, the hybrid and (in parentheses) LS460L thus: the cars will 16.3 (18.0) barrels of oil a and emit 8.7 (9.6) tons of gases. Perhaps this the tiny, obscurely positioned badges. The LS600hL is a fiendishly and comfortable car, but its hybridity it the greenest luxury car by only a small margin.


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