We just drove the 2018 Lexus GS F and the GS 350 AWD and pretty much love the hell out of both of them. Though neither vehicle is the best at any one thing, they both prove that the GS is an excellent everyday sports sedan that delivers fun, comfort, and good looks (as well as killer reliability).
Regardless of how great we think the GS is among luxury sedans, the bad part is that the GS might not last much longer since Lexus is considering getting rid of it at the end of this current generation. Here's why we think it's worth to keep and/or redesign.
The GS Has Stood the Test of Time
The Lexus GS started way back in the 1990s, and it was created with more sporting intentions than the rest of the lineup, a sort of larger version of the IS. But it didn't strike a chord with customers and never really quite fit the cushy luxury image Lexus was known for. It wasn't as big as the flagship LS, nor was it as popular as the Camry-based ES. The GS was more sporty and had the looks to back it up. Sadly, those who were looking for a sporty luxury car turned to BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi. But the GS lived through four generations and leads us to where we are today. Nearly three decades later, and the GS is better than its ever been.
The GS is Seriously Comfortable
Sit in the current GS, and you'll find that there's ample room, some of the best seats in the industry, and a dash layout that's still attractive after seven years of the fourth generation. The near infinite adjustability of the power tilt and telescoping steering column, the quick shifting transmission, the sublime seats (especially in F Sport trim), and the excellent seating position make for a real pleasure behind the wheel, and the passengers fare nearly as well. Only the infotainment system feels lacking, as the Enform system could use a total overhaul. Aside from that, the GS is superb inside.
The GS is Sporty No Matter the Trim Level
The GS is one of those vehicles that's a competent all-arounder. It's not only comfortable, well-built,a and spacious, it's one of the sportiest models available, regardless of whether you get the GS 300 (241 hp turbo four), the GS 350 (311 hp turbo V6), the GS 450h (V6 + electric motor) or the hi-powered GS F with its booming 5.0-liter V8). Each one has a sporty suspension setup and good balance that make it a blast to drive every day, not just on a track. The fact that you get rear-wheel drive standard and an optional F Sport package that increases the level of driving dynamics make it an attractive but comfortable daily driver that won't put you to sleep.
The GS Holds Its Value and Reliability
Lexus makes some of the best, longest lasting cars in the business, and the GS is no exception. You'll see cars that are from the 2nd generation still driving around. Even versions from the last generation are still selling for $20,000 used, which is a testament to their overall value and reliability. It rates a whopping 9.2/10 from customers who purchased it used. That's all the more reason why it makes a great daily driver that still delivers thrills behind the wheel.
But the unfortunate outcome is that the GS will probably not continue beyond the fourth generation. The brand new LS 500 uses a turbocharged V6, just like the current GS. Lexus is concerned that the car will detract from LS sales in what's known as a product overlap. But what's also true is that it will cost Lexus a lot of money to develop a brand new GS, a move that doesn't make much sense when sales of the current car are poor (it barely outsells the overlooked Kia Cadenza).
Furthermore, sedan sales are tanking everywhere, from cheaper versions to pricier ones. The Lexus RX and NX crossovers are their best-sellers, lending more credence to the notion that investment in more crossovers is where the profits are. We're really sad about what could very well be the demise of the GS. It ticks so many boxes for us, which crossovers rarely do.