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Lexus of Santa Monica Unveils New Showroom

Lexus of Santa Monica's New Showroom

Lexus of Santa Monica has taken the dealership experience to a entirely new stratosphere, installing the cars in a place that looks more like a villa than a showroom, with fountains, a grand piano, chandeliers, and even a cobblestone drive. Quite a departure from the antiseptic look of the usual standard. I’m not entirely sure what to make of it.

They have a commercial, take a look for yourself:

Certainly looks comfortable, but don’t the cars seem out of place? I imagine it’s something you have to experience in real life, but it seems more like a restaurant than a place to buy a car.

One thing’s for sure, the women over at Ask Patty love it.

Women Golfers Driven to Succeed

Lexus Golf Balls

The U.S. Women’s Open is coming up, and in a mirror of their previous mens survey, Lexus quizzed women golfers about their commitment to the game. The results are surprisingly similar:

  • Women are spending even more hours than men on the driving range (5 vs. 4 hours)
  • Thirteen percent of women golfers would give up their hair for the perfect swing.
  • One out of three women golfers say they prefer to play with golfers who are better than they are (38%).
  • One out of four women golfers say they would rather have the perfect golf swing than the perfect marriage (27%)
  • 52% of women golfers check to see how many bags of clubs can fit in the trunk of a car before they buy it.
  • 43% of women who golf say the sport has improved their relationship with their significant other.
  • More than six out of ten women golfers say their friendships have benefited because of golf (63%) and another 23% age 18-39 say their pursuit of golf has benefited their job performance.

[Source: Auto Spectator]

Classic 1990 LS 400 Commercials

Someone must have been digging through their old VCR tapes, because here’s two VHS quality commercials from the LS 400’s inaugural advertising campaign:

Funny story about the first commercial, taken from the book Lexus: The Relentless Pursuit:

What the ad didn’t say — and what Team One [Lexus’ Advertising Agency] members didn’t know until later — was that gold-plated sensors are standard on almost every car. However, few in the viewing audience seemed to notice and it served its purpose by reinforcing the notion that Lexus was synonymous with quality of the highest standard.

Top Gear Comparison: Lexus SC 430 vs. Hyundai Tiburon

I can’t say that the SC 430 is my favorite car in Lexus’ lineup, but Top Gear took it one step further, declaring it “the worst car on sale today”. When comparing it to the Hyundai Tiburon, it was hardly even a contest:

“Dreadful”. “Horrible”. “Charmless”. I’m honestly surprised the host didn’t drive the SC 430 off a cliff at the end.

Autospeed Aero Tests the 1991 LS 400

Lexus LS 400 Aerotesting

One of the major design considerations when the first LS 400 was being prototyped was reducing its drag co-efficent (Cd), or the amount of wind turbulence the car experienced when in motion. A low drag helps with fuel efficiency and reduces the amount of energy needed to keep the car moving, and when the car was introduced, the LS 400 proposed to have lowest Cd of any standard passenger car.

So when Autospeed decided to publish a series of articles examining the aerodynamics of various vehicles, including a 1991 Lexus LS 400 seemed elementary. They also took to an interesting method of investigation: tufts of wool were taped over the entire car, which was then driven down an empty highway at 80mph, all while these tufts were examined for turbulence. Quite a bit cheaper than renting a windtunnel!

This was by no means an exact experiment, but the results are interesting nonetheless. They discovered a bit of air turbulence around the bottom of the rear window, though minimized by the design of the C pillars, and some additional unsteady air flow around the front wheel wells.

At the very least, this was quite an entertaining visualization technique of a key component in vehicle design.