Roadshow Video Reviews
2008 Lexus LS 600h LLuxury, gadgetry, oomph, and greenness: it's all here in the Lexus flagship.
>> So we start with the only car we ever gave a perfect 10 to at CNET Car Tech, the Lexus LS. The LS460 was the most recent one we reviewed and loved it. Then you turned it into a hybrid. A big, luxurious hybrid, which you've seen in special blue badges around the vehicle. That signifies the hybrid power train, which lives under this enormous piece of sheet metal. Not a lot to see once you get in there though. But this Lexus hybrid drive is the equivalent of Toyota's hybrid Synergy Drive. It does it in a combination of a five-liter V8 and a roughly 80 horsepower electric motor. All in, you get 430 horse, 385-foot pounds of torque. Let's check out the Lexus LS600H. ^M00:00:43 [ Music ] ^M00:00:50 The transmission is a single choice. It's a CDT. That's kind of unusual. Most of the time we see a CDT in a small econo green putt putt. But this car has got one and it also has a shiftable gate. Now wait a minute. If you've got a shiftable gate, what are you shifting on a CDT which has no gears? Well it's got a synthetic set of gear profiles that are basically software. You see them on the screen there as you shift through them from one all the way to 8. But they aren't real gears. You're just telling the computer to simulate that gear. That's wild. Overall, this vehicle has got a lot going on. With a big engine to start with, then the hybrid on top of that, then the all wheel drive apparatus and of course every luxury tech option known to man. That's where we get to our 5220 curb weight. Nonetheless, it moves. Zero to 60 in 5 point 5 and it's not even really trying to be a fast car. Now we covered most of the in cabin tech on this car in our Lexus LS 460 video and I encourage you to go check that out for a detailed look. But just to give you a refresher, Mark Levinson surround sound system, plays DVDs, DVD audio, sounds stunning. The best on screen interface I think in the business. Beautifully rendered and very clear. The mapping and navigation are, you wish your PC mapping looked that good. You've also got adaptive cruise on this vehicle. As I mentioned, you can get the executive massage rear seat. The long wheelbase makes it luxurious enough back there. The LS600 Hybrid has to be taken as a package. And as a mission. Doesn't make sense to have a car this big and this ostentatious as a hybrid. Well you base it on several things. First of all, do you want to be green? Yeah, it's a pretty clean car. It qualifies for SuLev emission rating, which is very low emissions. Mileage wise, well if you buy a 104000-dollar car, you're probably not too concerned about whether gas is three, four, or five bucks a gallon. That's good because the mileage is good but not stunning, 20, 22. Virtually the same city and highway because of course hybrids tend to do very well in the city and 22 is about as well as you're going to do on the highway with a car this big. But imagine what a six-liter V12 gas engine car would be like. It wouldn't approach this kind of mileage, so that's a success. And then the bottom line is what's it like to drive every day? The power is delicious. It's smooth, it's quiet. Now a Lexus is that anyway, but the hybridization brings you just a little extra delightful low end that makes this big car feel a lot smaller. Let's price out our big green buddy. About 105000 dollars base, gulp. But you're getting a Lexus flagship. The best build quality in the industry. A hybrid with all wheel drive and while you could push this car to 120 with options, if you're looking for a vehicle that excels at what is typically V12 European territory for frankly a lot less money, and a lot more greenness, this is your car. ^M00:03:41 [ Music ]