The Lexus GS 350 is a rear-wheel-drive sports sedan with a powerful V-6 engine and available all-wheel drive. To get a V-8 with the GS, look at the more expensive GS 460. The GS 350 competes with midsize sport sedans like the BMW 535i, Mercedes-Benz E350, Cadillac STS V-6 and Acura RL. A hybrid GS 450h uses a gas-electric V-6 powertrain, and along with the GS 460, only comes with rear-wheel drive; they're covered separately in the Cars.com Research section.
New for 2011
A brake override system is now standard. This system automatically reduces engine power when the brake and accelerator pedals are pressed at the same time to prevent unintended acceleration. The only other change of note is that models with the optional navigation system no longer have a compass in the inside mirror because the nav system has a compass.
Lexus says the sedan has a futuristic look. The GS 350 has a long hood, a short rear deck and wide, tapered rear pillars that flow back to the car's rear. Long side glass and a steep back window enhance the car's performance image. Exterior features include:
- 17-inch wheels
- Optional 18-inch wheels
- Available moonroof and power rear sunshade
Five occupants fit inside the GS 350, though the backseat is snug. The optional navigation system comes with Bluetooth, voice activation and a backup camera. A 7-inch dashboard screen works with the navigation system and also serves as a monitor for the Intuitive Park Assist system. Interior features include:
- Power tilt/telescoping steering wheel
- Aluminum-face gauge cluster
- 10-way power front seats with heated leather upholstery; available fan ventilation
- Push-button start
- Dual-zone climate control
- 10-speaker, six-CD stereo
Under the Hood
All-wheel drive is available for the GS 350. Hydraulic controls in the system vary the front/rear torque split from 30/70 to 50/50 and provide what Lexus calls the performance advantages of rear-wheel drive with the traction of all-wheel drive. Mechanical features include:
- 3.5-liter V-6 engine makes 303 horsepower and 274 pounds-feet of torque
- Six-speed automatic transmission
An option group includes adaptive cruise control and the Pre-Collision System that helps determine if a crash is imminent and takes appropriate steps if it is. Other options include park assist and adaptive headlights that swivel with the front wheels.
Safety features include:
- Standard front seat-mounted side-impact airbags
- Standard side curtain airbags for both rows
- Standard four-wheel-disc antilock brakes
- Standard electronic stability system
- Standard active front head restraints
- Optional Pre-Collision System incorporates active braking
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