There was absolutely no engine noise when starting. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year. Another noteworthy option is the active stabilizer system--which provides the advantage of a heavier stabilizer bar almost instantaneously without sacrificing ride quality. It is a car that is more about performance, comfort and than fuel economy. Then it would start up, producing interior heat. The available 18-inch tires can make the ride a bit harsh, however. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below.
The clean intuitive dash is highlighted by woodgrain and metallic trim, and by the multi function steering wheel that incorporates controls for the audio, cruise control and phone. Overall, I would rather be driving somewhere in my car than going to work. The extra ponies are good for a 0-to-60-mph time of 5. For 2008, it gets a new, much-improved V8 engine. For added performance, the transmission includes a sport mode that enables you to manually make sequential shifts with the console-mounted gear lever. It remains the most fuel-efficient option in its class, and the functional cost of that hybrid premium decreases as the price of gas rises. Both aspects were very annoying.
Much to my surprise, we got a good deal and could afford it. The gas engine uses both direct injection and port injection combined with variable cam timing and intake manifold tuning to produce 292 horsepower. Its Variable Gear Ratio Steering reduces the amount of steering lock not just steering effort at very low speeds and accelerates the steering effect as the wheel approaches full lock. Safety features that come standard include dual front air bags, front and rear side airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, curtain-type head-protection air bags both and front and rear, and a tire-pressure monitor. This car has the calm, intuitive personality we associate with the Lexus brand, though ride quality can get firm with the large tires. The 17-inch wheels provide the best ride quality and the 18-inch tires are available to provide more cornering grip for drivers who feel they need it. The V-8 is a more powerful, higher-performing version and costs more.
The available variable intermittent windshield wipers actuate automatically when raindrops are sensed. The steering at low-ish speeds was surprisingly heavy but we liked that — it made us feel like we were driving a cheap Benz. New Car Test Drive correspondent Kirk Bell contributed to this report from Chicago. Then she looked at this Lexus and I thought, is she crazy?!?! The side mirrors get turn signals, and the wheel designs are new. Accelerate a little faster and both would provide power to the wheels. This sport sedan is meant to be dynamic, yet free of gimmicks.
Two banks of menu buttons flank the screen. An electronically-controlled, continously variable transmission ensures subtle gear changes and allows both petrol and electric motors to act as one. Overall, I found driving a hybrid in a cold Canadian winter was no different that driving any other vehicle. The shifter has a manual mode that simulates six different gears, and there's impressive stability in corners, even when the road surface turns rough, thanks to the double-wishbone front suspension and multilink rear. We had to constantly feed in steering, which was too light - now at speed.
Without the energy display on the dash, you would soon forget the car is a hybrid other than when you start it. It has been on two long distance trips thus far without problems. For more new car reviews, interviews and automotive news visit today. This works especially well on winding roads. It plays through a 10-speaker sound system. But we felt that both the electric power steering and electric brake system occasionally deliver an unnatural feel through the controls. Voice recognition makes the system a hands-free experience for the experienced user.
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. Later on, Lexus added an F Sport trim for those looking for a sportier variant, and it features 19-inch alloy wheels, F Sport suspension calibration, Lexus Dynamic Handling System with dynamic rear steering, a Sport S+ mode, variable gear ratio steering, and F Sport brakes. The power-adjustable mirrors have defogging heat elements and tilt down when the car is in reverse. This advice also is displayed in the lower center of the speedometer, an area that is also used to show information from the trip computer, radar cruise status, distance monitoring and various warning messages. The electric experience was good and the dash and gauges for the hybrid display were fun to watch. Both head and leg room will be tight for anyone over 6 feet, 2 inches, and the front seats have little toe room if the front seat is at its lowest point.
Amazing examples of automotive technology are included as standard equipment, yet the driver is never aware of them. Both motors put out 147kW, and when combined with the petrol engine, 254kW is produced. Navigating through the submenus doesn't take too much brainpower, but like most multi-tasking electronic systems, a day spent with the owner's manual on a quiet side street is the best way to figure out the way to work everything properly. Then it would smoothly and silently start back up again. Front-wheel drive is never as sporting. The Hybrid Synergy Drive uses a 3.
I did find that the high efficiency of the gasoline engine in this hybrid did take longer to warm up the car interior. Even during a morning commute, you can seize a few moments of driving enjoyment. The V-6—engined made 303 horses, and the V-8 was good for just 290 in 2007. Intuitive Park Assist considers steering angle input as well as the usual distance-warning sensors to offer contact avoidance advice through graphics in the dashboard-mounted information screen. The gear changes of both the six-speed automatic transmission are virtually undetectable. The interior is skillfully wrought, the car is beautifully built, and the powertrain is a gem. The available Lexus pre-collision system uses a radar sensor to detect the onset of a collision and will automatically optimize chassis calibration for quick steering response, retract the front seatbelts, initialize brake assist and even decelerate the car at 0.
. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? The quiet ride, power, included features, and performance gives owners more bang for their buck. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. It features an updated 3. All-wheel drive is also available and is beneficial in foul weather. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.