Experience a profound shift in hybrid performance. A breakthrough Lexus Multistage Hybrid Drive, a 4.7- second 0-to-60 time* and a multistage transmission deliver the instant torque and response to put the entire category on notice.
Drives like a non-hybrid. Aside from the powertrain (more on that below), the LS 500h feels just like the non-h models. The brake-blending is flawless, with almost no discernible difference in pedal feel or travel between the regenerative and friction brakes; that makes smooth, predictable stops easy. The steering and suspension, too, closely mimic those of the non-hybrid. If you take away the engine, then, the hybrid drives just as well as the standard LS: smooth, competent, and easy to use.
The subtle hybrid. There are no glaring indicators from the outside that you’ve picked the hybrid: no bright-green brake calipers, for instance, or overly blatant badges. While eco-conscious buyers may want to flaunt their car’s hybrid credentials, for other luxury shoppers, the LS 500h’s discretion is a plus. Mild bodywork tweaks, however, do make the hybrid a tiny bit more aerodynamic, with a drag coefficient of 0.27 versus the regular LS’s 0.28.
Noticeable fuel economy gains. With rear-wheel drive, the LS 500h posts an extra 6 miles per gallon city and 4 mpg highway, at 25/33 mpg. The all-wheel-drive model posts slightly smaller gains, but adding 5 mpg city and 4 mpg highway, for totals of 23/31, is still a nice boost in efficiency.
Still crazy accommodating. Massaging seats, a powered ottoman for the right-rear passenger, silky-smooth air suspension, and an impressively crisp 3D surround-sound system make the inside of this LS more glamorous than my living room. Like the non-hybrid, you’ll be hard-pressed to find fault with this car’s quietness, comfort, or amenities.