2018 Lexus GS 300 Review

GS 300

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2018 Lexus GS 300 Overview

The GS has long been Lexus’s midsize luxury offering that offers an alternative to established German brands. Available as a base model with a small 4-cylinder engine, the range goes all the way up to a large luxury hybrid and the sporty GS F. For 2018, the base GS model called the GS 200t has been renamed the GS 300. It starts at $46,300, and can be ordered with the F Sport package of performance goodies for about $4,000. Additionally, Lexus’s Enform Safety Connect and Service Connect bundle of services, which had previously been subscription-based, are now free for 10 years.

Under the hood of the GS 300 is the same 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder as in the old GS 200t. It makes 241 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, and is mated to an 8-speed automatic. The GS 300 is rear-wheel drive only. The engine is good for 0-60 miles per hour in seven seconds and will manage 22 mpg city, 32 highway, and 26 combined. These figures drop slightly with the available F Sport package. While the base 4-cylinder offers perfectly adequate performance, some buyers may be tempted to spend the extra money for the 3.5-liter V-6 in the GS 350.

One of the GS’s strongest points is in the handling department, with well-weighted electric power steering and multi-link suspension at both ends. Things get even better with the F Sport package, which is available on most of the GS range, including the base GS 300. The F Sport package adds larger tires and brakes, variable-ratio steering, a limited-slip differential, and adaptive suspension.

The interior is the same mix of high quality materials and leather that people have come to expect from a high-priced Lexus, and the analog dash clock is a nice touch. The GS 300 comes standard with 10-way power seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, 12-speaker stereo, HD Radio, navigation, USB port, Bluetooth, and a sunroof. Opting for the F Sport package adds aluminum pedals and scuff plates, a 16-way power driver’s seat, unique interior trim, and a black headliner. Heated and cooled front seats come with the available Premium package, as do heated rear seats and steering wheel, rear-wheel steering, 17-speaker Mark Levinson stereo, and a self-parking feature.

The GS 300 comes standard with a reversing camera, parking sensors, blind-spot monitors with rear cross-traffic alerts, and even active headrests. The Safety System+ bundle has also been made standard, and it comes with adaptive cruise control, forward-collision warning with automatic emergency braking, automatic high beam headlights, and lane-departure warning with active lane control.

Updated

Since 2012, Andrew Newton has been writing about cars both old and new. Andrew has been an associate editor at Sport Car Digest as well as a contributor to sites like BoldRide and JamesEdition. He was also the Education Manager at the Larz Anderson Auto Museum in Brookline, MA before becoming the Auction Editor at Hagerty Classic Car Insurance. He currently splits his time behind the wheel between his NA Miata, 1994 Corvette, and Triumph TR6.

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