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New Lexus GS 450h Owners - Give Us Your Report

ideleidele Posts: 200
edited March 9 in Lexus
I trade every two years. I love the RX400h. It has surpassed my expectations but I greatly prefer a sedan to a crossover. Although I had driven a Prius of a friend and was enormously impressed,I wanted more luxury and performance and with the RX400h becoming available when I was checking cars, I decided to take the plunge. The hybrid synergy drive is so superior to the ordinary power plants that I will only purchase hybrids in the future. The term "hybrid " is used to cover all additions of an electric motor to an ICE. But all that I know or have read about what other auto manufacturers are planning leads me to believe that they will not come close to what Toyota/Lexus has accomplished. Toyota/Lexus with the GS450h has a power plant which is another major step forward. So much so that my decision was made without hesitation. The RX400h is in such demand around here that my depreciation will be minimal, and I'll have a car, the GS450h, next year that certainly will be in great demand.
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Comments

  • ideleidele Posts: 200
    I'm leasing my RX400h and will lease the GS450h when I get it. The advantages of leasing is that cost of ownership is specific; that is the residual value is known. If, at the end of a lease, the market value is lower than the residual value the difference doesn't come out of your pocket. If, for any reason, your car can be sold for more than the residual value you pocket the surplus.
    I'm very happy at the higher fuel efficiency of hybrids. Raising fuel efficiency of all cars is a very important goal. And don't forget the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to which hybrids make a huge contribution.
  • gs450hgs450h Posts: 49
    I just got a call from my dealer and my GS 450h is in. I am picking it up tonight. The plaque says #7 of 75. I will post photos in the morning. Good luck to all others who have waited so patiently. :) :D :surprise: :shades:
  • thedon1thedon1 Posts: 15
    What city and state are you in? I just got off the phone with my dealer in Oakland and they don't have any news on my NM yet. Please let me know what city and state you're in. Thanks for helping out a fellow NM Edition owner. :)
  • gs450hgs450h Posts: 49
    Here is the photo of my new GS 450h which I picked up in Rockville, Maryland last night. It is pretty cool and fast. (Not much trunk)
    :D ">

    http://www.carspace.com/gs450h
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,837
    VERY nice ride!

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  • 2001gs4302001gs430 Posts: 767
    Congrat on the coolest acquisition. Please post more info about the car... anything.
  • gs450hgs450h Posts: 49
    Thank you. I have only driven it for 30 minutes, but will certainly post more as I learn more. The color is really cool. It changes depending upon the light. The dealer told me the standard colors will only be black and silver...all others will have to be special ordered. Of course there will only be 75 that are this color. It is very fast and very smooth. It is going to take me a weekend to read through all of the materials. The NAV book alone is 75 pages. The Gen 5 NAV is supposed to be much improved. More to come.
    :)
  • 2001gs4302001gs430 Posts: 767
    Lexus Canada said that the 450h will be available in May. I can't wait to see and possibly test drive it. I want to replace my current GS in about a year, so if this were THE CAR for me then I would have plenty of time to special order it.
    Btw, how is the CVT comparing to the normal auto box?
  • Very nice. Can you confirm lack of the IPod connection like the IS and ES will have?
    Thanks.
  • gs450hgs450h Posts: 49
    No iPod connection, but the audio sound is amazing. My dealer may install a VAIS SoundLinQ (SLI) - Auxiliary Input Adapter with Apple® iPod™ interface (fits most Toyota/Lexus vehicles 2001-2007 with and without Navigation System)once he has tested it out on a GS 430
  • thedon1thedon1 Posts: 15
    Any more pics to share? Thanks! :)
  • gs450hgs450h Posts: 49
    Send me your email address and I will send you a bunch of pictures this weekend and then you are welcome to post them as you see fit. I checked out the other site for storing the pix and do not have the time to do all of that right now...I had to keep my day job in order to pay for the GS 450h ;)
  • nmlnml Posts: 7
    please, please send me pics of the gs450h! can't wait....thanks so much...
  • gs450hgs450h Posts: 49
    I will email you some pix today. I tried to email some to thedon1 but I got this error message:

    "Currently this member is only accepting email from @carspace.com addresses. You can email this member from your carspace.com email account (if you are not a member, joining is free!) or contact this member by other means and ask that they add you to their allowed list of correspondents."
  • bmwconvertbmwconvert Posts: 75
    Put my deposit down at Lexus of Englewood NJ about 6 months ago. Not sure where I was on the list, but salesman called me today letting me know that a silver/black had just arrived. Said it was their 1st car in and that it arrived on Saturday (the 42 miles on the odo would imply that at least a few customers or salespeople drove it the first day). I paid cash and had title to my trade-in so I was able to drive it out 2 hours after arriving.

    This is my first Lexus, having owned 4 BMW's prior (3's and 5's). Dealer experience was perfect. Where's the hybrid premium? I paid sticker (no premium at all), which looked about the same as the sticker of the loaded GS430 in the showroom (granted, that car must get discounted several thousand at least). Seems like a reasonable premium for an innovative, powerful and efficient vehicle.

    Only drove the car from the dealer to home and around the block a few times, so little to report so far. First impression very positive -- smooth as silk and whisper quiet (again, my first lexus and BMW's didn't aim for those characteristics). Very powerful acceleration -- you feel yourself pushed back into the seat.

    I've got a lot of exploring to do, as I only spent about 5 minutes with the salesman's demo in the dark parking lot. Only negative so far (not unique to the hybrid): the interior lighting in this model is a joke. 4 pin spotlights provide virtually zero lighting outside of their direct beams. More light came from the dashboard gauges than the ceiling lighting. The black interior didn't help. It's one thing to aim for cool looking, but this is ridiculous.

    Only extras were Sirius radio ($695), which I have to go back for, and the insurance for the wheels/tires ($685 for 5 years of protection seemed like a good idea given the poor road conditions in the NY metro area).

    FYI: I don't think you're eligible for the $1,550 govt hybrid rebate if you lease -- I believe only if you purchase. If that's in fact right, work it into your financing decision.
  • nmlnml Posts: 7
    my email address is erthnet1@aol.com.....thanks....haven't monitored this forum for a week or so....my husband is being told by lindsay lexus that the colors coming in are only black and silver.....of the gs450h - at one point it was indicated there would be black, silver and white....he actually wants white for a change....with the tan interior....any word on that color? what color did you get? obviously, i will see when i see your pics, right! looking forward to them..
  • nmlnml Posts: 7
    have been reading your reviews.....our dealer/salesman told us the neiman marcus model - which my husband originally wanted - was an 'odd' color, a mix between silver/ice and a purple-y color.....yes, no? so he wasn't interested and now we are waiting for the 'regular' 450h in white..... :(
  • gs450hgs450h Posts: 49
    Maybe since your dealer had no way of getting you a Neiman Marcus...???

    I love the color, but in any color it is a great car.
  • thedon1thedon1 Posts: 15
    I am the proud owner of car number 44 of 75. This car is FANTASTIC! I noticed that there are two or three for sale on the most famous online auction on the web. I can't say the name due to forum regulations, but I'm sure you interested people know which site I'm talking about. Happy Bidding! :)
  • nmlnml Posts: 7
    my husband actually turned down the nm version because he didn't want the black interior....they are building him a white with beige/tan leather interior....delivery in 60-90 days.....it's good to know how great this car will be based on your experience...thanks.... :)
  • gs450hgs450h Posts: 49
    The first one listed "on the most famous online auction on the web" only got one bid and did not sell. Perhaps people don't know how special these cars really are! ;)
  • My car came in at Lexus of Westport, CT. today. Silver with Black Interior. They say they will get only 2 a month for the next year. Next one in is Black on Black. Car handles really well. Very smooth, and very quick as everyone has said. People at Lexus of Westport were great. Ask for Charley Dukes if you want a first class salesman who really knows his cars. Took 2 hours with my wife to explain every detail of the car....hope he stays around she'll need a few more lessons. Great car....
  • bmwconvertbmwconvert Posts: 75
    I'm a few fillup's in and have been getting about 23mpg with little highway miles in there (average speed a dismal 25mph or less on my commute).

    I use the Treo 650. It was very finnicky during configuration (Lexus dealer was aware of the problem and didn't have a ready solution, but a friend who's pretty good with bluetooth setups managed to get it working). Now it works fine, except the signal strength and battery meter do not show up on the screen.

    I'm somewhat annoyed that several features become disabled when the car is in motion. For example, you can only speed dial when in motion, leaving me to punch in a phone number using the tiny Treo buttons instead. Ditto for the navigation system. Didn't it occur to Lexus that the front passenger might want to enter a destination or lookup a phone number? I'm told this is not unique to Lexus though. Seems hypersensitive to liability to me. Voice dialing is an option, but it's pretty tedious.

    To those interested, go ahead and buy... you won't be disappointed. The car's great (except for the lousy interior lighting!).
  • flidflid Posts: 11
    This is good information. I intend to go with the Treo 700 which I assume will have the same features as the 650 when interfaced with the Bluetooth. Your mileage seems a little low for mostly city driving...are you in a hilly terrain? I just sold my Land Cruiser and the navigation system also blocked destination input when the vehicle is in motion, which I presume is a safety issue.

    I am buying when my color comes in and I believe this to be a bellweather vehicle - luxury, performance and environmentally appropriate... My only real remaining concern after all research, test drive and reasoning is the size of the trunk. In rationalizing why the 8 cubic feet is okay, I turn to the old adage, "Don't build a church for Easter Sunday"
  • gelam007gelam007 Posts: 7
    All,,

    I have a 450 h I purchased 9 days ago. For the most part, I love the car. However, I feel the ride quality is quite harsh at tomes over bumps. There have been times while driving where I found the noise and impact of the bumps quite intrusive and startling. I have heard this is in part to having the run-flat tires on the car, which have an extremely thick and hard sidewalll...thus the jolt I feel at times. Does anyone else share this same thought as I do? Has anyone tried changing to tires without run-flat technology? I heard that might help soften the ride.

    Thanks for your input.

    Greg
  • ideleidele Posts: 200
    I have a little over 1500 miles on my GS450h. They came with run flat tires and I was concerned at purchase time. The tires run somewhat noisier and the ride is more like a sports car but the advantages I found after driving with them I like them. The thicker sidewalls help in sharp braking by keeping the car completely in alignment. The fast cornering with no squeal is excellent. This substantially enhanced performance has made me a convert. I did not buy the donut spare and now not only would I not want one but I would like to see the trunk space it takes up eliminated. I believe that the battery pack can be fitted in that space and the trunk restored to full size. However if you desire a soft ride a change of tires is needed. The double wishbone front and multilink rear suspensions are excellent as are the various stability systems.
    The GS450h is a drive-by-wire vehicle. It is to me the automotive analogue of piloting a jet fighter, which is impossible without the sensors and instantaneous control. The vehicle is definitely not for those who want the roar of the engine, the resistance of the steering ,etc. On the other hand the seamless rapid acceleration, the quiet to enjoy the music, the stability provided by the fifty-fifty front-rear balance and very low center of gravity are unmatched.
  • ideleidele Posts: 200
    Let me repair the awkward phrasing
    line 1 should be "IT came"
    line 2 should be "but WITH the"
    line 6 should be "it takes up UTILIZED AS FOLLWS:
  • flidflid Posts: 11
    Thanks so much for your report regarding the experience of owning and driving this vehicle. I expect delivery of my black on black within the next 10 days, but will not see and drive the car until mid-September when I return from my summer home. I truly look forward to driving this car...

    I am most impressed with your editing of the prior transmittal. The edits are precise and appropriate.

    Thanks and best regards.
  • ideleidele Posts: 200
    Thanks. My car is black on black, too. The tires, by the way, are Bridgestone Turanzas EL42 RFT all season run-flats. The only other car on which these tires are used, to my knowledge, is the new BMW 3 series (different tire size).
    One spectacular feature of the GS hybrid is the replacement of the tachometer by a power meter giving the output in kilowatts. Since 1 kw equal 1.3410 hp, one sees the horsepower being used since it is a constant multiple of kw reading. The navigation screen gives you the average fuel consunption until reset. Since I've never reset it, the average full consumption currently stands at 27.6 mpg. There is also a separate readout on the dash for the average fuel consumption per tank, which resets when the tank is filled up. All this instrumentation teaches you how to drive sensibly.
    The hybrid powerplant completely lives up to my expectations when I placed an order last October. My posts on this are back at the beginning of this subforum. I hope to post on the powerplant soon.
  • bmwconvertbmwconvert Posts: 75
    I share the original poster's feelings about the harsh ride, even when the suspension is on the Normal setting. I tried Sport once, but it only made things worse. Agreed it's the tires and is the cost for the high performance handling, but other sport sedans get comparable results with a better balance to ride quality. It feels great on smooth roads, but unfortunately I live in the NYC area, where most of the roads are in lousy condition. I may put on snow tires in the winter (I've heard that run flat/high performance tires do not perform well on snow & ice), which will let me see what the ride is like on a more typical sidewall.

    With regard to idele's comments, I like the power meter, particularly when you can roughly monitor when braking switches from regenerative to the brake pads, but I don't fully understand it. There are times when the meter reads, for example, "50", but the Energy Monitor does not show the electric motor as driving the wheels. So where's that power going? To the air conditioner or something?

    Finally, idele, you must live in a very flat area and drive with a feather right foot. I haven't come close to that kind of mpg. My best stretch was 27.0, and that was purely highway driving. My best tank average is only 24.6mpg, and I'm reasonably conscious of efficient driving style.
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