Lexus GS Hybrid

#2 in Luxury Midsize Cars Overall Score: 8.9 / 10
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$63,635 - $68,680

2017 Lexus GS Hybrid Overview

The 2017 Lexus GS Hybrid ranks 2 out of 15 Luxury Midsize Cars.

The 2017 Lexus GS Hybrid's powertrain offers the rare combination of outstanding fuel efficiency and potent power, but it’s one of the priciest luxury midsize cars. While it does come loaded with features, there are some nonhybrid rivals that offer just as many for less money. 

SEATING


5

MPG


29

  CITY


34

  HWY

DRIVETRAIN


RWD

HP


338
See full 2017 Lexus GS Hybrid specs ยป

Pros & Cons

  • Great gas mileage
  • Strong engine
  • Spacious rear seats
  • Long list of standard features
  • Tricky infotainment controller
  • High starting price

Notable for 2017

  • Lexus Safety System+ now standard

Lexus GS Hybrid Rankings and Research

The 2017 Lexus GS Hybrid ranking is based on its score within the Luxury Midsize Cars category. Currently the Lexus GS Hybrid has a score of 8.9 out of 10 which is based on our evaluation of 25 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.

Scorecard

Overall: 8.9
Critics' Rating: 8.7
Performance: 8.4
Interior: 7.8
Safety: 10.0
Reliability: 5_0

2017 Lexus GS Hybrid Pictures

2017 Lexus GS Hybrid Review

By Courtney Jones February 17, 2017

The 2017 Lexus GS Hybrid's powertrain offers the rare combination of outstanding fuel efficiency and potent power, but it’s one of the priciest luxury midsize cars. While it does come loaded with features, there are some nonhybrid rivals that offer just as many for less money. 

Is the Lexus GS Hybrid a Good Car?

If you want a luxury cruiser with a fuel-efficient powertrain that doesn’t compromise on engine power, the Lexus GS Hybrid (also known as the GS 450h) is it. With its 338-horsepower V6 engine and two electric motors, the GS Hybrid delivers easy acceleration from a stop and plenty of hustle on the highway. It does this without sucking the gas tank dry; the 450h gets 29 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway. The GS Hybrid's ride is comfortable and composed, and there is a performance-tuned F Sport model with an adaptive suspension and dynamic rear steering for those seeking more athleticism.

On the inside, you’ll find comfortable, supportive front seats and spacious rear seats, making the GS 450h ideal as a comfy daily commuter or family sedan. You’ll also enjoy an abundance of standard features. Among these are active safety features that are only optional in many rival vehicles, like blind spot monitoring and adaptive cruise control. One notable disadvantage with the Lexus GS Hybrid is its infotainment system's mouselike controller, which can be a challenge to use and distracting while driving.

Should I Buy the Lexus GS Hybrid?

The Lexus GS Hybrid (starting at $63,634) offers outstanding fuel economy estimates, luxury accommodations, and a plethora of standard driver assistance features. However, it also comes with a high starting price. Some competitors provide everything just named, yet they’ll save you five figures. For example, the Lexus ES Hybrid costs $21,815 less than the GS Hybrid and comes with similar tech and safety features. The similarly equipped all-new Volvo S90 costs $16,685 less, and it offers a few standard features the GS Hybrid doesn’t have, including the Pilot Assist semiautonomous driving system, rear collision warning, and road sign recognition.

The base GS Hybrid’s 338-horsepower V6 engine and two electric motors lay down plenty of power. In fact, it’s one of the strongest powertrains among both hybrid and nonhybrid models in the class. Neither the ES Hybrid's 200-horsepower four-cylinder nor the S90's 250-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder engines can touch it. Still, while the GS Hybrid is a solid car, its strong engine may not be tempting enough to make you shell out that kind of cash – especially when competitive options like the S90 and ES Hybrid are available for much less.

If you're trying to choose between the Lexus GS Hybrid and Lexus GS ($46,310), it should be a fairly easy decision after comparing their fuel economy estimates with their base prices. According to the EPA, you'll save $500 annually fueling the GS Hybrid instead of the base GS. However, because the GS Hybrid is $17,324 more expensive than the gas-only GS, it would take you 34 years of fuel savings to fill the gap between their starting prices. Additionally, the nonhybrid Lexus GS comes with most of the GS Hybrid's standard features, including the Lexus Safety System+ suite of features.

Compare the GS Hybrid, ES Hybrid, and S90 »

We Did the Research for You: 20 Pieces of Data Analyzed

It can be difficult to determine whether a hybrid vehicle is worthwhile, that's why we've done the research and analysis for you. We compiled 20 pieces of data on the Lexus GS Hybrid, including fuel economy estimates, expert reviews, reliability scores, and crash test data. Using this information, we put the GS Hybrid head-to-head with competitors to help you make an informed car-buying decision. The GS Hybrid’s last redesign was in 2013, and there have been no major changes since. As a result, this overview uses applicable research and reviews from the 2013 through 2017 model years.

Why You Can Trust Us

Our team has been ranking and reviewing cars for nearly 10 years, and we have a combined 75 years of automotive industry experience. Our mission is to help you confidently make one of the most important buying decisions in your life. Additionally, you can trust our word because our site's advertising is handled by a third party and we never accept expensive gifts or vacations from manufacturers.

How Much Does the Lexus GS Hybrid Cost?

The GS 450h carries a starting price of $63,635, making it one of the most costly cars in the class. That’s about $17,000 more than the base nonhybrid GS. The base model comes with a long list of standard features for the class, including a moonroof, a 12-speaker audio system, Bluetooth, a USB port, Siri Eyes Free, and an infotainment system with Lexus’ Remote Touch controller. The Lexus Navigation system with a 12.3-inch screen and the Enform App Suite are also standard. You also get a long list of active driver assistance features, including a rearview camera, rear cross traffic alert, blind spot monitoring, and adaptive cruise control.

The GS Hybrid F Sport, the performance-tuned model, starts at $68,680. It features dynamic rear steering and a sportier version of the GS Hybrid's standard adaptive suspension. It also comes with racy exterior styling to match its performance chops.

The GS Hybrid only comes in two trims, and there are just a few options and packages available. You can add a 17-speaker Mark Levinson audio system to either trim for $1,380. Parallel park assist will cost you an extra $500, and opting for the power trunk lid will set you back another $400. On F Sport models, you can add a color head-up display for $900.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Lexus dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Lexus deals page.

Lexus GS Hybrid Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Lexus GS Hybrid or Lexus ES Hybrid?

The Lexus ES Hybrid is one of the only other cars in the class with a hybrid powertrain. It’s a much less expensive alternative for luxury hybrid sedan shoppers – its starting price is a whopping $21,815 less than the Lexus GS Hybrid's. The ES comes with nearly the same technology and safety features as the GS Hybrid, including Lexus' Safety System+, which includes forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, lane keep assist, and automatic high beams. The only major difference in features is the ES Hybrid's 7-inch touch screen versus the GS Hybrid's 12.3-inch screen. Also, the GS Hybrid comes with blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and the Enform App Suite, while the ES Hybrid has them as options.

The ES Hybrid beats the GS Hybrid's fuel economy estimates, earning 11 mpg more in the city and 5 mpg more on the highway, making it the most fuel-efficient car in the class. The only major advantage the GS Hybrid holds over the ES Hybrid is its strong powertrain, which gets 338 horsepower. The ES Hybrid's electric motor and four-cylinder engine only produce 200 horsepower. That's still more than enough power for city and highway driving. Unless you need that extra power, the ES Hybrid gives you nearly everything the GS Hybrid does, but for significantly less money.

Which Is Better: Lexus GS Hybrid or Volvo S90?

The Volvo S90 ($46,950) is an all-new model that comes with even more advanced safety features than the well-equipped GS Hybrid. You may know the Volvo brand for being at the forefront of safety technology, and the S90's long list of standard safety features reinforces that notion. The S90 comes with features like rear parking sensors, a rearview camera, automatic high beams, forward collision warning, low-speed automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, and a driver attention monitor. Also standard are road-sign recognition, rear collision warning, and Pilot Assist semiautonomous driving – none of which are available in the GS Hybrid. Better still, the S90 costs $16,685 less than the GS Hybrid.

The Volvo S90's base turbocharged four-cylinder engine produces 250 horsepower. While that’s 88 horsepower less than the GS Hybrid's engine, it's still more than what most rivals' engines have. The S90 is also available with a 316-horsepower turbocharged and supercharged four-cylinder. While not a hybrid, the S90 earns some of the highest fuel economy estimates among gas-powered cars in the class: 23 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway.

In the end, if you want good fuel efficiency but are willing to consider a nonhybrid, the S90 provides the better value.

Which Is Better: Lexus GS Hybrid or Lexus GS 350?

Aside from their powertrains, the Lexus GS Hybrid and Lexus GS 350 ($46,310) are almost identical. They both come well-equipped with advanced driver assistance technologies, like adaptive cruise control, automatic high beams, lane departure warning with steering assist, pre-collision braking with pedestrian detection and brake assist, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and a rearview camera.

Where they differ is in power and fuel economy. The Lexus GS has a 241-horsepower twin-turbocharged four-cylinder engine. That’s more than enough power for effortless highway acceleration, but it's 97 horsepower less than what the GS Hybrid's electric motor and V6 engine make. However, the GS 350 is also available with a 311-horsepower V6 engine and a 467-horsepower V8, while the GS Hybrid has one powertrain.

Unsurprisingly, the GS Hybrid has better fuel economy estimates than the nonhybrid GS. It earns 7 mpg more in the city and 2 mpg more on the highway than the GS. You'll also save $500 annually on fuel with the GS Hybrid versus the GS 350. However, since the GS' base price is more than $17,000 lower than the GS Hybrid's, it would take you 34 years to make up for the difference between the sedans' base prices. All in all, the GS 350 offers a better value without compromising on luxury and features.

Compare the GS Hybrid, S90, and GS 350 »

GS Hybrid Interior

How Many People Does the GS Hybrid Seat?

The Lexus GS Hybrid has seating for five occupants. Whether you’re out running a quick errand or heading on a cross-country drive, you’ll enjoy sitting in the GS 450h. The seats have plenty of support, and the front seats' 10-way power adjustability and dual-zone automatic climate control ensure you’ll stay comfortable. The back seats have ample head- and legroom, so even adults will have plenty of space to ride back there.

The GS Hybrid isn't the only roomy car in the class, though. The Lexus ES Hybrid and Volvo S90 both offer plenty of space and support for folks seated in the front and back rows.

GS Hybrid Interior Quality

The 2017 Lexus GS Hybrid’s cabin has a luxurious feel, thanks to an abundance of premium materials throughout. While most cars in the class have luxurious accommodations inside, the Volvo S90 has one of the nicest cabins. It sports a simple yet elegant design and is outfitted with rich materials, including real leather and wood. The Lexus ES Hybrid also has a handsome cabin with quality materials.

GS Hybrid Cargo Space

You’re probably not buying the GS Hybrid if you need tons of cargo space. At 13.2 cubic feet, its trunk is a little smaller than average for a luxury midsize car. The gas-only Lexus GS has a 17.4-cubic-foot trunk. Most hybrids have smaller trunks than their gas-powered counterparts because the electric motor’s battery cuts into cargo space.

The GS Hybrid's rear seats don’t fold down, so there’s not much you can do if you need to haul larger items. On the bright side, the trunk does have a wide opening and a small pass-through for long items like skis. A power trunk lid is available.

The Lexus ES Hybrid has a slightly smaller trunk capacity of 12.1 cubic feet. The Volvo S90 has 13.5 cubic feet of trunk space.

GS Hybrid Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

What’s your favorite feature in the GS Hybrid? No matter the answer, you’re in luck, because it almost certainly comes standard. The GS Hybrid's lengthy list of standard features includes a versatile infotainment system that incorporates several connectivity tools, like Bluetooth and Siri Eyes Free, which lets you check and send emails and text messages with voice commands. That way, you won’t have to take your hands off the wheel or your eyes off the road. 

Be sure to try the infotainment system before you buy the car, however; it includes Lexus' Remote Touch controller, which is similar to a computer mouse and elicits strong feelings from most users (both positive and negative). A chief complaint is that the system is overly sensitive and the controller is hard to use, especially while the car is moving. This system also comes with the Lexus ES Hybrid, so you can expect it to perform similarly.

The Volvo S90 comes with a vibrant 9-inch vertical touch screen. On it, you can use familiar smartphone gestures like pinching and swiping. The system is user-friendly, though some settings may take a few more inputs than you would prefer.  

Read more about interior »

GS Hybrid Performance

GS Hybrid Engine: Potent Hybrid Powertrain

The GS 450h only has one powertrain: a V6 engine combined with two electric motors. Don’t let the hybrid name fool you, though – the GS Hybrid boasts nearly 340 horsepower. That's one of the highest base horsepower ratings in the class, and the car feels quick whether you’re starting from a stop or jetting down the highway.

The only other hybrid in the class is the GS Hybrid's sibling, the Lexus ES Hybrid. It comes with a four-cylinder engine and an electric motor that together make 200 horsepower. That’s plenty of power for both city and highway driving. The Volvo S90's base engine is a 250-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder that produces strong city and highway acceleration. The S90 is also available with a twin-turbocharged (meaning it’s turbocharged and supercharged) four-cylinder that generates 316 horsepower.

GS Hybrid Gas Mileage: GS Stands for Gas Saver

It's safe to say that if you're shopping for a hybrid, fuel efficiency is a top priority to you. The Lexus GS Hybrid gives you the power you need while still earning an impressive EPA-estimated 29 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway, which is excellent for the class.

You'll get even better fuel economy with the Lexus ES Hybrid. It earns 40 mpg in the city and 39 on the highway, which are the highest estimates in the class. The Volvo S90 doesn’t have a hybrid powertrain, so its fuel estimates are unsurprisingly lower than that of these Lexus models. However, at 23/34 mpg city/highway, the S90 still earns some of the better estimates in the class.

GS Hybrid Ride and Handling: Comfort Is Key

The GS Hybrid probably isn’t the best choice for driving enthusiasts who want to carve up winding roads, but it handles capably. The GS F Sport model provides an option for those looking for comfort and agility. It comes with a variable adaptive suspension and dynamic rear steering, allowing the car to handle sharp turns more easily and provide a more athletic driving experience. The GS Hybrid delivers a cushioned ride and smooth braking action. The latter is not always a given for hybrids due to their regenerative brakes, which capture the energy lost during braking to recharge the battery.

The Volvo S90 is another car that offers a plush ride and composed handling. The same can be said of the Lexus ES Hybrid.

Read more about performance »

GS Hybrid Reliability

Is the Lexus GS Hybrid Reliable?

The Lexus GS Hybrid is a car you can rely on. It earns a perfect five out of five score in predicted reliability from J.D. Power and Associates, putting it among the best cars on the market in this area. Few cars achieve this score.

The Lexus ES Hybrid, while still much better than average, gets a slightly lower score of 4.5. On the other hand, the Volvo S90 earns just three stars – an average reliability rating. 

Lexus GS Hybrid Warranty

The 2017 Lexus GS Hybrid is covered by a four-year/50,000-mile basic warranty and a six-year/70,000-mile powertrain warranty. Hybrid-related components are covered by an eight-year/100,000-mile warranty.

The Lexus ES Hybrid comes with the same warranty. The Volvo S90 has the same basic warranty, but doesn’t come with a powertrain warranty.

Read more about reliability »

GS Hybrid Safety

GS Hybrid Crash Test Results

The 2017 Lexus GS Hybrid has not yet been rated for crash tests by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. However, you should know that the 2017 nonhybrid Lexus GS earns a score of Good – the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's highest score – in three crash tests (moderate overlap front, side, and roof strength).  

The Lexus ES Hybrid receives five out of five stars from the NHTSA. The Volvo S90 not only earns perfect scores in IIHS crash tests, it also holds a Top Safety Pick designation, the institute's highest award. It receives a Superior score (the highest score possible in this category) for its front crash prevention technology, which includes forward collision warning as well as low- and high-speed automatic braking. The NHTSA has yet to crash test the S90.

GS Hybrid Safety Features

The GS Hybrid comes standard with Lexus' Safety System+, which is a suite of active safety features designed to help you in a wide array of situations. Adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, and lane keep assist can ease your life on crowded streets or in heavy highway traffic. Forward collision warning with pedestrian detection and automatic braking can help you avoid hitting people or other cars at low speeds.

The GS Hybrid’s other standard driver assistance features include a rearview camera – standard in many luxury cars – blind spot monitoring, and rear cross traffic alert.

With so much standard driver assistance technology, you might think there are no optional features – but there are. The GS Hybrid is available with driver drowsiness monitoring, which alerts you if the vehicle detects that you might be losing focus. Parallel park assist is also available, meaning that you won’t have to sweat as much the next time you try to squeeze into a spot on a crowded street. It automatically steers you into a space while you control the gas and brake pedals.

Read more about safety »

Which Lexus GS Hybrid Model Is Right for Me?

For the average daily commuter, the Lexus GS Hybrid base model ($63,635) is a fitting option, offering plenty of standard technology and safety features, as well as a comfortable ride. Unless you're seeking a fuel-sipping luxury sedan with sporty driving dynamics, you probably won't need the performance-oriented GS F Sport ($68,680), the only other trim.  

There are a handful of options and packages available. In either trim, you can add a power open-and-close trunk lid for $400, parallel park assist for $500, and a 17-speaker Mark Levinson premium surround sound audio system for $1,380.

Lexus GS Hybrid

The base trim starts at $63,635. Standard features in the GS Hybrid include push-button start, dual-zone automatic climate control, a moonroof, a 12-speaker audio system, satellite radio, HD Radio, Bluetooth, a USB port, Siri Eyes Free, and an infotainment system with Lexus’ Remote Touch controller. The Lexus Navigation system with a 12.3-inch screen and the Enform App Suite are also standard.

Standard driver assistance features include a rearview camera, rear cross traffic alert, and blind spot monitoring. Also included is Lexus’ Safety System+, which is a suite of active safety features including adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, and forward collision warning with pedestrian detection and automatic braking.

Lexus GS Hybrid F Sport

Starting at $68,680, the Lexus GS Hybrid F Sport is the performance-oriented trim. It comes with dynamic rear steering and a sportier version of the GS Hybrid's standard adaptive suspension. The GS F Sport also sports a more aggressive exterior design. A color head-up display is available for $900 in this trim only.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Lexus dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Lexus deals page.

See 2017 Lexus GS Hybrid specs and trims »

The Final Call

There are few options for shoppers who want a powerful luxury sedan that gets good gas mileage. Among the few, the 2017 Lexus GS Hybrid is an excellent choice – but only if your budget is flexible. 

The Lexus GS Hybrid has one of the strongest powertrains in the class, which is rare for a car that earns outstanding fuel economy estimates. It also has a comfortable and composed ride. The performance-oriented F Sport has especially sharp handling. The GS 450h's interior is luxurious, and its seats are spacious for all inside. There are lots of standard features, too, including plenty of advanced driver assistance technology. One major drawback, however, is the infotainment system's hard-to-use mouselike controller. While few competitors can match the GS Hybrid's power, a few can meet its lengthy features list while saving you $15,000 or more.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "Proving a car can be both eco-friendly and still fun to drive, the 2016 Lexus GS 450h hybrid elevates fuel economy without undermining acceleration or performance. When stacked up against the Mercedes-Benz E-Class, BMW 5 Series or Cadillac CTS, the GS proves a worthy competitor, offering similar levels of performance and technology plus superior long-term reliability and resale figures." -- Kelley Blue Book (2016)
  • "The 2015 Lexus GS 450h impresses with its strong performance, long list of features and luxury sedan refinement. It's the rare hybrid that doesn't force any significant compromises." -- Edmunds (2015)
  • "Last, but certainly not least, is the 450h, which I found to be the most significant GS. Smoother, quieter, quicker, and more seamless than its predecessor, the 450h is an impressive engineering feat, offering the power and speed of the previous V-8 GS 460 combined with the fuel economy of the current 1.8-liter Corolla." -- Motor Trend (2013)
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