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By Charl Bosch

Motoring Journalist

Touched-up Lexus LS priced with more tech and comfort

Retaining petrol power only for now, Lexus has confirmed availability of a hybrid model at a later stage.

Its reveal having taken place a smidge over twelve months ago, Lexus has divulged spec and pricing details of the refreshed LS.

Marking its fourth year in production this year having debut at the 2017 North American International Auto Show in Detroit as the fifth generation LS, the exterior changes to Lexus’ flagship sedan comprises a dark Spindle Grille, new adaptive BladeScan LED headlights with integrated daytime running diodes and subtly restyled LED taillights, now with chrome detailing instead of the previous piano key black trim.

Riding on 20-inch alloy wheels, Lexus has also tweaked the LS underneath by including more sound deadening materials known as Active Noise Control and Engine Sound Enhancement, completely retuning the Adaptive Variable Suspension and adding more rigid stabiliser bars at the front and rear.

facelift Lexus LS
White Nova hue bespoke to the F Sport.

In addition, both the standard LS and sportier F Sport benefit from a new orifice located within the engine mounts Lexus claims reduces vibrations, as well as revised software to prevent the ten-speed automatic gearbox from downshifting too frequently.

As mentioned, the line-up once again consists of two models with bespoke touches to the F Sport coming in the form of;

  • F Sport Spindle Grille with a mesh pattern;
  • F Sport 20-inch alloy wheels;
  • F Sport bumpers and side skirts

Inside, the LS receives Lexus’ redesigned 12.3-inch infotainment system, now with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a revised touch pad controller and a high definition electrochromatic rear-view mirror.

While offering a choice of two colours; black and black/crimson as well as the standard fitting of a sunroof on the conventional model, the F Sport, bar from also coming with the latter as standard, sports an F Sport steering wheel, alloy inserts, fabric illumi door trim, a faux leather armrest and a suede roofliner together with a choice of three colours; white, black/white and Flare Red.

ALSO READ: Lexus LS gently updated

New on the safety front is Pre-Crash Assist with Pedestrian Detection, Advanced Park Assist, improved Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keep Assist, Speed Sensitive Radar Cruise Control and Steering Assist.

In addition to the features already mentioned, both derivatives come as standard with the following:

  • auto levelling headlights;
  • electric tailgate;
  • heated electrochromatic folding mirrors;
  • tyre pressure monitor;
  • all around parking sensors;
  • 23-speaker Mark Levinson sound system;
  • electric steering column;
  • heated
  • rear sunblinds;
  • Hill Assist Control;
  • Vehicle Dynamic Integrated Management system;

Unlike its sibling though, the F Sport loses on the newly added rear-seat entertainment system and massaging seats, receiving instead dual-zone climate control and ventilated front seats compared to the standard model’s quad-zone system and ventilated front and rear chairs.

Despite Lexus’s recent announcement that it will focus largely on hybrid vehicles, a move which has so far resulted in the culling of the UX 200 and debuting the facelift IS with a hybrid powerunit only, the LS remains petrol motivated in the shape of the carryover twin-turbo V6 engine, despite the LS 500h being confirmed for introduction at a later stage.

facelift Lexus LS
Highlighting the interior is a new 12.3-inch infotainment system

The same unit now offered in the Toyota Land Cruiser 300, the 3.5-litre badged twin-blown 3.4-litre bent-six continues to produce 310kW/600Nm, delivered to the rear wheels through the mentioned ten-speed ‘box. Limited to 250 km/h, the LS will get accelerate from 0-100 km/h in five seconds and consume unleaded at a rate of ten-litres per 100 km.

As before, the LS comes with a drive mode selector offering six settings; Eco, Normal, Comfort, Sport, Sport S+ and Custom, while the F Sport retains the adaptive gear ratio steering system as standard.


In total, the LS offers a choice of twelve colours; Black, White Quartz, Sonic Iridium, Graphite Grey, Manganese Luster, Sonic Titanium, Lustrous Silver, Sonic Agate, Morello Red and Opulent Blue with the F Sport dropping the White Quartz for White Nova hue and coming as standard in the model specific Poseidon Blue.

Standard on both models is a seven year/105 000 km warranty and maintenance plan with the conventional LS 500 priced at R2 204 200 and the LS 500 F Sport at R2 397 900.

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