Roadshow Video Reviews
2015 Lexus LS 460 LHow does the 2015 Lexus LS 460 L stack up against its German rivals? Brian Cooley drives it and offers his take.
There are a lot worse places to be on a long drive or a tedious commute than sitting in an LS 460. Their flagship sedan hasn't changed much, but did it need to? Let's drive this 15 LS 460, an L, the long wheelbase, and check the. [MUSIC] Now let's be honest, the current LS is a little bit long in the tooth. It's been on the stage for a while. This, I think, is its fifth model year in the current guise. We're probably going to get one more, and then it gets a heavy refresh. So know you're buying late into the cycle. Our sample today is what I think is a smart way to go. It's an L. LS460 L, the L means long wheel base. To me, when you get a car of this size and presence. To cheat the rear seat passengers out of real comfort, kind of makes a mockery of the whole concept. The only other major derivation you could do on this car is to select all rear drive, or with rear wheel drive today. [MUSIC] Well, inside the LS a lot of things are familiar. We do have a very large 12 inch. Widescreen LCD here. The downside is how you control it, unless it's by voice, using this thing, the remote touch controller, which unfortunately has not been jettisoned on the LS, some other. XI are moving away from this. It's like playing an 80s video game with a worn-out joystick. The map now has 3-D and bird's eye views. Traffic is now predictive. It may suggest a new route along the way, much like Google Maps on your phone already does. You've got a pretty comprehensive app suite here, which is in conjunction with the enform app on your phone. I think we've seen just about all of these before. You've got Pandora. Yelp, Open Table, iHeartradio, and Bing. I don't know that you're gonna use Facebook Places so much, and you do also have Slacker over here as another audio choice. Please say a navigation command. You can drive all of this by pretty good voice command. And it also lets you do a navigation address as a full phrase. That's essential these days. The last thing that's new in this cabin, tech-wise, is they now have adopted support for Siri, eyes-free, with your recent iPhone. So when you hit the voice button, you can get into Apple's voice system, not necessarily the one built into the car. [MUSIC] Inside one of the most hidden engines in the business, lie 8 cylinders and a v. Developing 386 horse power and 367 pounds of torque. All of which you need given the weight of this car can run as high as 4900 pounds. If you go long wheel based, all wheel drive, and get the fancy rear seating package. Even then though 0 to 60 never strays above 6 seconds. Delivered through an eight-speed automatic. Real world MPG, you're gonna see maybe 20, maybe less, on average everyday use. [MUSIC] Well the first thing you notice about the LS is it's still an LS, super smooth, isolated to be honest. This is not that sort of high engagement car. Now I've got this. This control knob here with comfort, eco, normal, and sport, sport plus modes. Even if I get over to sport plus, I don't get a big difference in the powertrain delivery. The big difference is, it definitely brings in the more aggressive part of the adaptive suspension, to tighten up the ride nicely. That's noticeable. I don't think anybody does a micro polish. Of the wooden part of the wheel better. It always amazes me how smooth the polished part of the steering wheel is. These are big cars and they do push 5,000 pounds in some configurations. But it never feels tubby or lardy, I gotta hand that to them. Beyond this central knob, by the way, there are no real serious drive controls, no paddles, for example. And the shiftability over here on this stick tells you that they don't really intend you to do a lot that. Generally I find the sportier drive modes on the LS almost out of place, and since it never matches the more raw aggression of some of its German competitors, I prefer to enjoy car in its default position, where it is really satisfying. Done up our way, an LS is about a hundred thousand dollar car once you add all wheel drive. Adaptive LED headlights, all the driver assist technology, Levinson audio, and a pricey ultra luxury package I don't want, but is required by everything else. The LS represents the traditional end of what made Lexus, smooth coddling comfort with uniquely exacting precision. And a nice complement of technologies held back by a dated interface, and a frustrating controller. So, what is the LS? It's basically the S-class with a seven series or the 8A for the person who frankly wants to spend a little less, have a little more residual at the other end and isn't quite concerned as much about the status of the badge. You've got tremendous comfort and serene quality here, the payoff though, is that you don't have quite as much driver involvement as the German competitor. dealing with a long wheel base, although I don't think that that executive rear seat thing is worth it, not for the price of another car, to get.