So many of my girlfriends were coveting the 2014 Lexus GS 450h when I had it. Even a few weeks later, they’d ask me, “What happened to that car I liked?” Yes, it’s that pretty. It’s the sedan that will make everyone sneak a peek. And rightly so. This is loaded with features, has lean lines, and it’s even fuel efficient. What’s not to like?!
One-week vehicle loan was provided for review purposes. All opinions are my own.
2014 Lexus GS 450h Review
Inside, the ride is quiet and smooth. You barely feel the gears shift and stepping on the acceleration just make the engine sound like its purring. The handling is just right and it hugs the road as a car like this should. This was another car I had to battle Frans to let me drive.
The large V6 engine responded immediately whether in Eco, Normal, Sport, or Sport+ (also changes the suspension) mode. There are even gear paddles if you feel a little need for speed and in Sport/Sport+ mode the cluster changes to show the RPM instead of the fuel economy. So don’t be fooled by the hybrid name tag, thinking this vehicle can’t hold its own on the road. I can even handle inclement weather with a separate “snow” mode.
The Lexus GS 450h has almost everything. Supple leather and real bamboo accents treat the driver and passengers to luxury and relaxation. The front seats were cooled and heated and had 10-way adjustment power controls! Those in the back seat have their own climate control and can also adjust the sound system (this can be distracting for the driver as the radio screen keeps changing). Speaking of which, though, the sound is clear with crisp tones.
The display is large and resolution is clear. There’s plenty of room all around in front, back, and in the automatic trunk. Yes, that’s automatic and so, so convenient. I loved the auto emergency brake feature that activated when you placed the gear in “park” and deactivated when put in another gear. No more trying to drive with the e-brake still on and accidentally wearing it own.
The back area actually has five retractable shades. Two on each window to cover it in its entirety and an automatic shade in the back. My daughter and her friend would pull all the shades and pretend they were in a fort. Silly girls. It was awkward that the buttons for the back shade and the parking assist are hidden under the arm rest when it’s slightly forward. I kept forgetting those buttons were there and would look all around to find them, until Frans would slide the arm rest back again.
The only things missing were the adaptive cruise control and the lane departure warning, neither of which I missed though. It was unique to see this had headlamp washers but I couldn’t seem to get those to pop out and work.
The hybrid aspect was just awesome. Just like the RX 450h, the electricity also kicks in at high speeds to lessen gas used on the highway. While you do seem to hear the engine on the inside, you hear nothing from the outside.
Worth the Hefty Price Tag?
“You get what you pay for” definitely applies here. Knowing this model retailed at $60-70K made it a little hard to drive it with a sense of ease. I wanted to park two miles away with no vehicles or carts nearby and found myself warning my daughter constantly to not drop one crumb. But, like with most clumsy teenagers, those warnings fell on deaf ears as she knocked over a bowl of spanish rice. Thank goodness there was only a little left in it. Oy, teens! I don’t think my nerves could handle any damage to this car. It seemed like the GS attracted a lot of fingerprints too. If I owned this, I would be so tempted to wipe them off all the time.
For just easy driving, the 2014 Lexus GS 450h is a champ. Features galore, luxury finishes, top gas mileage, and quality engineering make for a dependable and stylish ride that you’d be happy to invest in. The ride is not as enjoyable as it is in the IS F. That’s because the GS is too polished and refined. This is a completely different model which fills different needs. This is an escape for parents of older children or those who are done with the juvenile scene. It’s like retirement status in a automobile in which you can just effortlessly enjoy the ride and turn a few heads in the process.