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#3

in 2010 Luxury Large Cars

Avg. Price Paid: $29,043 - $29,043
Original MSRP: $57,450 - $57,450
MPG: 22 City / 25 Hwy
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2010 Lexus GS Hybrid Interior

This interior review was created when the car was new. Some links may no longer point to an active page.

The 2010 GS 450h shares the opulent cabin of the Lexus GS – an interior some seasoned auto reviewers call the best available at this price point. It features an abundance of soft-grain leather and fine wood trim.  Lexus designers track the woods used in each GS independently, reserving a portion so that grains can be matched if any repairs are needed. Other luxury cars feature cabins that may be as sumptuous, but none are moreso.

There are, however, flaws inside the GS Hybrid. Headroom is tight enough that taller drivers will need to look elsewhere. A few reviewers complain of out-of-date electronics as well.

  • "Typical of Lexus, the GS450h excels in small details. Damped lids ease open to reveal small nooks, hinged panels enhance the usefulness of door pockets, variable-transparency glass covers the instruments to keep them legible in all ambient light conditions, and a kilowatt meter replaces the tach - not particularly useful, but along with the hybrid monitor's graphic display in the center-dash screen, it undoubtedly reinforces the owner's decision to go the gas-electric route." -- Car and Driver
  • "The cabin is definitely classic Lexus, with lots of leather and real wood -- nothing fake here -- and plenty of amenities....I'd say there are probably more luxury features on the GS 450h than on a comparably equipped [BMW] 5 Series." -- Detroit News

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Seating

The seats of the Lexus GS Hybrid are very comfortable, with firm bolstering for front-seat occupants and standard heated front seats. Passengers in both rows, however, will find headroom in short supply. Taller drivers, or those who routinely transport adults in the back seat may want to consider the Mercedes-Benz E-Class or Infiniti M instead. There are, unfortunately, no hybrid options for those who need more space.  Patient buyers should be aware that an Infiniti M Hybrid may arrive for 2012.

  • "Six-footers get ample legroom. Even riders of average height will be cramped for headroom. Seats are all-day comfortable." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Though spacious enough for five passengers, it accommodates four more comfortably as the elevated rear center cushion makes for a tighter fit in the middle position." -- Edmunds

Interior Features

The Lexus GS450 Hybrid features exemplary materials – soft-grain leather, high-quality plastics and fine wood trim -- and easy-to-use electronics. A handful of reviewers complain that the cabin technology is out of date, but that seems to be a minority opinion. Most find it user-friendly and up-to-date. An optional Mark Levinson premium audio system wins particularly strong praise. In a class full of extraordinary sound systems, it stands out. 

Luxury shoppers might want to note that the GS Hybrid is one of the last large luxury cars not to offer a single user-interface that controls all climate and entertainment functions, like the iDrive system in the BMW 5-Series. For many reviewers, this is a plus: separate controls for each system are often easier to master than a complicated joystick system.

  • "Genuine wood and aluminum trim complements the rich leather seating surfaces, and it's all put together with flawless fit and finish. However, the highly polished wood can reflect glare annoyingly at times, and the control-oriented drop-down dash panel to the left of the steering wheel can get in the way of the driver's exit if left open." -- Edmunds
  • "Lexus-typical cabin decor blends high-grade plastics and leather. Other trim bits are genuine wood, but the reddish color used to stain those pieces makes them look fake." --  Consumer Guide
  • "The first thing we noticed when the 2009 Lexus GS 450h appeared in our garage was that the cabin tech hadn't been updated from the initial GS model launch in 2005. Lexus had a really good navigation and stereo system back then, but times have changed and the competition has far outstripped these simple components. …. The optional 14-speaker, 330-watt Mark Levinson Premium Surround Sound Audio System is "impressive as much for its excellent sound quality as it is for its broad range of 3-letter functions: from its ability to play MP3 and WMA-encoded CDs to its ASP (automatic sound leveling) and DSP (digital sound processing)." -- CNET
  • Lexus's voice controlled navigation system is "infinitely simpler to use than BMWs iDrive or the Mercedes COMAND system." -- Car and Driver

Cargo

The Lexus GS 450 Hybrid offers only 7.5 cubic feet of cargo space. It’s a paltry measurement – the trunk of the gasoline-powered GS is considered small at 12.7 cubic feet. Like most manufacturers, Lexus locates the hybrid’s heavy battery pack beneath the trunk. This helps balance the weight of the engine, making the car handle well, but leaves it with the kind of trunk typically found in a small convertible. 

  • "Trunk space is much tighter than other GS models at only 7.5 cubic feet, owing to the placement of the hybrid battery pack." -- Edmunds
  • "The trunklid swings on noninvasive strut-type hinges, but its small opening makes for awkward loading. There's no folding rear seatback, just a slim pass-through. The hybrid's battery is behind the rear seats, further reducing trunk room and eliminating the pass-through. Cabin's small-item storage is limited." -- Consumer Guide

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