News Homepage


Flickr Find: Lexus ES 300 with Scissor Doors

Flickr user anlee took in the Everton Family Freedom Festival on July 4th, and managed to snap off a photo of a heavily modded ES 300, complete with scissor-doors:

Lexus ES 300 with Gull Wings

I guess dropping the frame, upping the wheels, getting the custom paint job and snapping on a body kit just wasn’t enough. (Not sure about that front bumper, it looks enormous!)

More on the Upcoming Lexus Dedicated Hybrid

Lexus Hybrid Display

More information has been revealed about the upcoming dedicated hybrid from Lexus — Scheduled for release in 2010 (and not 2009, as previously reported), this new vehicle will be postioned between the IS and GS models:

The car would be aimed at well-to-do individuals who are after a roomy sedan but not prepared to step up to a car the size of the GS. Mid-sized D-segment models are ideal for families and when combined with Lexus’ luxury and quality standards, could be a real winner for fans of hybrids and non-hybrids alike.

“We’ll add a specific hybrid model and leave the IS as a sports petrol and diesel. There will be more focus on interior space than on sports styling and it will have more boot space,” Settle revealed.

D-Segment, in case you’re wondering, is the European designation for the large family car, or in Lexus terms, a tiny step below the ES 350.

This makes me wonder, Lexus has gone on record in saying they would like their entire model range to be powered by hybrid technology, why not just release an ES 400h or something along those lines? Why introduce a new model?

[Source: Motor Authority]

Car & Driver: Lexus RX 400h Long-Term Test

Lexus RX 400h

Easily, my favorite car magazine feature is the long-term test, where the magazines various writers and editors spend twelve months behind the wheel of a car then share the results.

Well, not satisfied with a single year, Car & Driver enjoyed a two year-long visit with the RX 400h. The magazine’s staff managed to put 40,000 miles on the SUV in that time, which gave them plenty of road to find out all of the vehicle’s low points:

To many drivers the transition from purely electric to gas and electric power wasn’t always smooth, and the amount of added power delivered was unpredictable. Many also felt a lurch and heard a clunking sound when the gas engine kicked in when the vehicle was at a complete stop. Most drivers thought that a $50,000 Lexus should behave more smoothly.

The regenerative braking system got gripes, too. The transition from regenerative to hydraulic braking was often disconcerting because a small increase in pressure on the brake pedal might produce a huge increase in deceleration. Drivers complained that when they began to press lightly on the brake pedal, the RX seemed to surge a bit, causing the knee-jerk reaction of applying more braking than intended. This was especially apparent in city driving at moderate to low speeds. All the Lexus service guys could do was tell us, “That’s just the way they work.”

These issues, along with the rather obligatory cost breakdown of a hybrid versus its traditional engine counterpart (it would take 91,000 miles before the 400h would justify its $3,800 premium over the RX 350), doesn’t really build a strong case for the hybrid. Unless you’re feeling incredibly guilty about your carbon output, stick with the RX 350.

Lexus LS 600hL on a Norwegian Test Track

Norwegian website Dinside Motor took an LS 600h L through its paces, hitting 160mph and showing off some major bodyroll:

I like to see these kind of tests, it’s so much more interesting to see the handling instead of reading about it.

Lexus Sponsors New Mobile Site & Lexus Team up

Lexus will be the first sponsor of Mobile, a new site created exclusively for car info on-the-go. While their involvement is seem to be limited to a simple banner ad directing visitors to the Lexus’ mobile offering, the actual site sounds like a very interesting service:

Visitors will be able to search’s inventory of 2 million new and used vehicles and get more details on the cars that interest them, including photos. Other features allow shoppers to access Kelley Blue Book’s Used Car Values, calculate vehicle payments and read expert reviews and the latest automotive news via’s blog, KickingTires. Mobile shoppers will also be able to quickly find a local dealer through the site’s dealer locator, which will also offer maps and directions to the dealership and click-to-call functionality.

No doubt, this would be a handy site, especially when shopping for used cars. Easier than keeping all the numbers in your head, I imagine.

[Source: CNN Money]