AUTO REVIEW:
2017 Lexus GS-F

The driver of this test car has been behind the wheel of a GS F before, but this is different, the experience is new.

So what makes the 2017 model all that more special than the 2016 Lexus GS F we tested early last year I hear you ask? Aside from its awesome looks, and the fact it’s powered by a 5.0-litre 32-valve DOHC Dual VVT-i V8 punching out 351kW of power and 530Nm of torque through an 8-speed direct shift transmission; it’s the major suspension upgrade that is the biggest factor.

Lexus has advanced the handling stability and ride comfort of its premium GS F sports sedan by incorporating the latest driver-selectable Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS), which electronically monitors and controls the damping force at all four wheels simultaneously.

The full AVS package has seven damping-force control strategies, including anti-dive and anti-squat, and works with the vehicle’s comprehensive safety systems for ideal composure, helping suppress body pitching under heavy braking or hard acceleration.

Lexus has linked the system to the Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM) safety technology and Drive Mode Select control. In a nutshell, this means that in ECO, NORMAL, and SPORT S modes, the Drive Mode Select system prioritises ride comfort while contributing to greater handling stability, based on driving operations and road conditions. In SPORT S+ mode, the focus of the damping-force control is handling stability.

Lexus claims 11.3l/100km for fuel economy but we couldn’t get close. 12.4l/100km was the best we could manage, but we were having bucket loads of fun. It needs a bigger fuel tank as 66 litres is not enough. Having to fuel up every two to three days feels like the fun police have come and taken away your toy.

Outside, from the big Lava Mica (aka orange) Brembo brakes, forged 19-inch wheels, custom paint colours and the F logo everywhere, the aggressive styling makes you sit up and take notice. LED headlights, quad exhaust ports, a carbon fibre boot-lip spoiler and reinforced plastic grille complete the look.

Inside, the boot offers a very solid 520 litre load space, and there’s a sporting feel to the steering wheel, seats and dash (all leather of course). Lexus has also stuck with the remote touch joystick from the previous GS F rather than the touch pad that’s made its way into a couple of the 2017 models.

The joystick controls the whopping 17-speaker Mark Levinson surround sound audio system, the SatNav and all the other controls you would normally utilise on an infotainment system.

Also making a return from last year is the heads-up display and moisturizing air-conditioning system. New for 2017 though is Lexus Enform, helping you find the nearest restaurant or petrol station – it even lets you view the weather.

Safety-wise, there’s an advanced pre-collision system, brake assist, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, a reversing camera (as well as front and rear clearance and reversing sonar), and 10 SRS air bags.

There’s also radar based adaptive cruise control, adaptive high beam, and a good lane departure warning system. The SatNav plays a role here too, telling you where school zones, speed cameras and speed changes are.

With all its extra bits the GS F will set you back between $164,000 and $173,000 drive-away, depending on your interior choices. Yes, it’s dearer than it’s ever been, but it’s a better car.

Seven enhancement packages, priced up to $6,100 each, are also available and add individual enhancements to an already outstanding looking car. It comes in eight colours, including the GraphiteBlack we tested. It also comes with a 48 month /100,000km warranty.

We warn you though, if you test drive the 2017 Lexus GS F you won’t care that the fuel tank is small or that it’s thirsty. You’ll be wowed by the sound of the V8, the power, and the incredible performance of the AVS system. You’ll walk away grinning from ear to ear.

The 2017 Lexus GS F was provided by Lexus Australia.
To find out more, visit your closest Lexus dealer.

Pictures: Dan Cantero Photography.

AUTO REVIEW: 2017 Lexus GS F
4.5Review by Mark Holgate of Exaustnotes
Driving Experience
Exterior Styling
Interior look and feel
Technology and connectivity
Family friendliness
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