1997 Top Gear Feature on the Lexus LS 400 & GS 300

From 1997, here’s a Top Gear feature on the freshly updated Lexus LS 400 and the brand new GS 300:

It’s no surprise that presenter Quentin Wilson is extremely positive about Lexus in this feature, the refreshed second-generation LS and the just released second-generation GS were quite a formidable pairing. However, I was surprised by Wilson’s confession that he was personally on his second LS—I wonder how he felt about Jeremy Clarkson blowing up an LS 400 with a machine gun.



  1. I actually had recorded this episode on tape when it was first aired. It was a great review of the LS in particular. Note the wheels on the LS400 which are 17” multi-spokers which was part of a sport package I think, whereas the US version had 16” five-spokers.

  2. That’s my version of the LS 400! It was a beeaaauuuuutiful facelift. I find it much better looking than the original third generation LS - inside and out.

    I’m personally glad that I didn’t have those tasteless fender signal lights and aging sport package wheels (as LEXUS BOY mentioned).

    Only the lastest generation IS beats it as the most timeless looking Lexus ever.

  3. I too thought the face-lifted 2nd gen LS400 was a really great looking car. Overall design appeal is still better than the current LS. The entire front end was a major improvement over the ‘95 LS which itself was quite good to begin with. Also liked the interior changes like the wood-trimmed steering & selector ( the 1st Lexus to get it ) & the softer looking leather.
    To WorldofLuxury - Any idea if those sport package wheels were available in the US, as an accessory maybe ?

  4. I’ve heard that the Europeans had their sportier suspensions, which weren’t available in the US. I’m guessing that we didn’t have those wheels either, as a result.

  5. whoops… I meant 2nd-gen, not third-gen

  6. I have never seen these wheels, myself, and don’t think they’re all that nice—they look like spare tires in this video.

    I’d like to see them in a photo rather than videotaped tv show from 1997. wink

  7. Thx for the vid, looks great. I wish they still had presenters like that who are willing to do a similar test drive of Lexus car(s).

  8. I agree, though Tom Ford from Fifth Gear seems to be quite partial to Lexus.

  9. I don’t understand the Europeans’ penchant for diesels, manual gearboxes & sporty handling. No wonder Lexus didn’t hit it there.

  10. Darn this video is no longer available.

    Anyone know where else I could see this review?

  11. I have to remember to start downloading these videos from Youtube. Sorry Jay!