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2018 Lexus GS Review

The 2018 Lexus GS finishes near the top of our luxury midsize car rankings. It earns a fantastic predicted reliability rating, and it has a relaxing ride and an upscale, spacious cabin with lots of standard safety features.

Pros & Cons

  • Lots of passenger and cargo space
  • Coddling ride
  • Great safety and predicted reliability ratings
  • Rich array of tech and safety features
  • Distracting Remote Touch infotainment controller




Critics' Rating: 8.1
Performance: 7.9
Interior: 7.1
Total Cost of Ownership: 7.2
Safety: 10.0
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2018 Lexus GS Overview

Is the 2018 Lexus GS a Good Used Car?

The 2018 Lexus GS is a great luxury midsize car with many appealing attributes. Outside of some frustrating infotainment controls, it excels across the board.

The 2018 GS has plenty of good traits:

  • Handsome cabin with quality materials
  • Plenty of standard tech features and driver aids
  • Spacious second-row seats
  • Larger trunk than many rivals
  • Smooth ride and agile handling
  • Top-notch safety and predicted reliability ratings

This luxury sedan also has some drawbacks:

  • Remote Touch infotainment controller is hard to use when driving
Why You Can Trust Us

Our goal is to provide you with the information you need to make car shopping a breeze. You'll find everything you need to know about this vehicle in our comprehensive Lexus GS review. It combines concrete data (like predicted reliability ratings, crash test results, and cargo space dimensions) with professional evaluations from 37 automotive sources.

We’ve been reviewing cars since 2007, and our Best Cars team has more than 75 years of combined automotive experience. We also award the Best Cars for the Money, Best Cars for Families, and Best Vehicle Brands on an annual basis. To ensure our impartiality, a third party handles our advertising, and we don't accept expensive gifts from automakers.

How Much Is the 2018 Lexus GS?

Used 2018 models are beginning to appear on dealer lots. Based on listings for the 2018 Lexus GS on our site, the average price is $48,500. Prices range from $41,900 to $74,800 and vary depending on the vehicle’s condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2018 Lexus GS Cost to Own?

The 2018 GS’ five-year costs for gas, insurance, repairs, and maintenance are projected to be around $31,570, or $6,314 per year. That’s well above average among luxury midsize cars.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New GS?

Outside of introducing Amazon Alexa capability, Lexus made no major changes to the 2019 Lexus GS sedan. However, if you want a hybrid, you’ll have to stick with a 2018 GS or older, as Lexus discontinued it for the 2019 model year. We review the 2018 Lexus GS Hybrid separately.

Read about the new GS »

Lexus redesigned the GS for the 2013 model year. The 2015 GS gained a new infotainment system, and the 2016 GS received refreshed exterior styling and two new trims: the base GS 200t and the performance-oriented GS F. For 2017, Lexus made its Safety System+ suite of driver aids standard in all GS models and introduced an adaptive suspension and a limited-slip differential as options. Other than renaming the base trim from 200t to 300, Lexus made no major changes to the 2018 GS.

Compare the 2017, 2018, and 2019 GS »

See the Best New Car Deals »

See the Best New Car Lease Deals »

How Reliable Is the 2018 GS?

The 2018 GS has a perfect predicted reliability rating of five out of five from J.D. Power.

Read more about GS reliability »

2018 Lexus GS Recalls

At the time of writing, there is one recall for the 2018 Lexus GS:

  • A fuel pump cover may crack and cause a fuel leak (GS F only)

Before buying any used vehicle, make sure all recalls have been addressed.

See more information on Lexus GS safety recalls »

Which Used Lexus GS Trim Is Right for Me?

The Lexus GS is available in three trim levels: 300, 350, and GS F. The main difference between the trims relates mostly to the engine; even the base trim is a luxuriously equipped sedan. There are also a lot of packages and stand-alone options available throughout the lineup. For example, the Premium package adds leather-trimmed seats, heated and ventilated front seats, a power rear sunshade, and rain-sensing windshield wipers. The Navigation package gives the GS a 12.3-inch display, a navigation system, and the Enform App suite.

Both the base GS 300 and GS 350 are available with an F-Sport package that bundles the Premium package with a 16-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, a sport-tuned suspension, and distinctive exterior styling. The GS 350 and 350 F Sport are the only models available with all-wheel drive.

  • Lexus GS 300: The entry-level Lexus GS 300 has a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine making 241 horsepower. It also has an 8-inch display screen, a 12-speaker stereo, satellite radio, a USB port, Bluetooth, Siri Eyes Free, proximity keyless entry, dual-zone automatic climate control, NuLuxe synthetic leather seats, a moonroof, a rearview camera, and the Lexus Safety System+ suite of driver aids. Several options are available, including front and rear parking sensors, a 17-speaker Mark Levinson surround-sound system, a head-up display, and a heated steering wheel.
  • Lexus GS 350: The GS 350 includes a 3.5-liter V6 engine rated at 311 horsepower. It also adds the Navigation package as standard equipment. The Premium package comes standard in models with rear-wheel drive; it's available in all-wheel-drive models.
  • Lexus GS F: GS F sedans feature a 5.0-liter V8 engine that puts out 467 horsepower. It comes standard with most of what you can get in this Lexus, though the head-up display and Mark Levinson surround-sound system remain optional.

See 2018 Lexus GS trims and specs »

What Does Lexus' Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Lexus offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles five years old or less and with fewer than 70,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. For its certified pre-owned vehicles, Lexus extends its original new-car warranty to six years or unlimited mileage. From the day you purchase or lease your Lexus CPO vehicle, you receive complimentary maintenance covering the next four factory-recommended services for two years or 20,000 miles. Every CPO Lexus must pass a 161-point inspection. Additional benefits like loaner cars, towing, and roadside assistance may be available, so read the Lexus warranty page carefully.

According to our analysis, Lexus has the best CPO program in the industry.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the GS?

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the GS the highest rating of Good in the three crash tests it conducted.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has not put the 2018 Lexus GS through crash tests.

Standard advanced safety features:

  • pre-collision warning and braking system
  • pedestrian detection
  • rearview camera
  • lane departure warning
  • lane keep assist
  • automatic high-beam headlights
  • adaptive cruise control

Available advanced safety features:

  • blind spot monitoring
  • rear cross traffic alert
  • front and rear parking sensors
  • head-up display

See GS safety scores »

2018 Lexus GS Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2018 Lexus GS or 2018 Mercedes-Benz E-Class?

The 2018 Mercedes-Benz E-Class is a decent luxury midsize car. It’s a good performer with brawny engine options, especially in the high-performance Mercedes-AMG models. Like the Lexus, the Mercedes-Benz has a generous list of standard features and a comfortable, upscale interior. The E-Class also comes in several body types: coupe, convertible, sedan, and wagon. The GS has a larger trunk than those in all but the E-Class wagon. The GS also has a much better predicted reliability rating and lower total ownership costs. On average, buying the Lexus costs around $7,700 less than the Mercedes-Benz. It’s the better pick for most shoppers.

Which Is Better: 2018 Lexus GS or 2018 Cadillac CTS?

Like the Mercedes, the 2018 Cadillac CTS has a range of powerful engines, including a supercharged V8 in the CTS-V that’s a lot stronger than the engine in the GS F. The Cadillac also balances a gentle ride with corner-carving thrills. However, the Lexus is the better sedan in most other respects. It has more rear-seat legroom, a larger trunk, more luxurious cabin materials, and higher safety and predicted reliability ratings.

Compare the GS, E-Class, and CTS »

2018 GS Performance

How Does the 2018 GS Drive?

GS models equipped with the base engine are capable cruisers, drawing out more than enough power for daily drives. The other two engines are far punchier, and the high-performance GS F rockets from zero to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds. The automatic transmission shifts smoothly.

Handling in this sedan varies by trim level. The GS 300 opts for comfort over sportiness, while the GS 350 strikes a good balance between handling and comfort. GS 350 F-Sport models, as well as the sporty GS F, have more dynamic handling.

  • GS 300: 241-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder 
  • GS 350: 311-horsepower 3.5-liter V6
  • GS F: 467-horsepower 5.0-liter V8 
  • Drivetrain: standard rear-wheel drive; available all-wheel drive
  • Transmission: eight-speed automatic with rear-wheel-drive models; six-speed automatic with all-wheel-drive models
Does the 2018 GS Get Good Gas Mileage?

With its turbo-four engine, the GS delivers typical fuel economy estimates for a luxury midsize vehicle. For something more fuel-efficient, consider the Lexus GS Hybrid, which we review separately.

  • GS 300: 22/32 mpg city/highway
  • GS 350, RWD: 20/28 mpg
  • GS 350, AWD: 19/26 mpg
  • GS 350 F-Sport: 19/27 mpg
  • GS F: 16/24 mpg
  • GS F-Sport: 21/30 mpg

Read more about GS performance »

2018 GS Interior

How Many People Does the 2018 GS Seat?

This luxury sedan seats five people in two rows. Head- and legroom is abundant in both rows, and all the seats are comfortable. The cabin is sophisticated and elegant, with supple soft-touch surfaces and wood accents.

Standard seating features:

  • NuLuxe synthetic leather seats
  • 10-way power-adjustable front seats

Available seating features:

  • genuine leather upholstery
  • heated and ventilated front seats
  • heated steering wheel
How Many Child Car Seats Fit in the 2018 Lexus GS?

The GS has two complete sets of LATCH connectors for the rear outboard seats, as well as a third tether anchor for the rear middle seat.

2018 Lexus GS Features

The infotainment system is relatively intuitive, but it can be tricky to operate because of the mouselike Remote Touch controller. Using it requires the driver’s eyes to be off the road for prolonged periods. Smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is not available.

  • Standard infotainment features: an 8-inch screen, the Remote Touch controller, a 12-speaker stereo, satellite radio, HD Radio, a USB port, Bluetooth, and Siri Eyes Free
  • Available infotainment features: a 12.3-inch screen, the Enform App Suite, a 17-speaker surround-sound system, and a navigation system
  • Additional standard features: push-button start, proximity keyless entry, a moonroof, and dual-zone automatic climate control
  • Other available features: a head-up display

See 2018 Lexus GS specs »

Read more about GS interior »

2018 Lexus GS Dimensions

Lexus GS Cargo Space

At 18.4 cubic feet, the GS 300 and GS 350 have some of the largest trunks in the luxury midsize car class. The 2018 BMW 5 Series is one of the few luxury sedans to have more room. The GS F has a smaller 14 cubic feet. The rear seats don’t fold, but there is a center pass-through for longer items. A power trunk is available.

These cargo dimensions are for comparative purposes. There is no substitute for visually examining the storage area in any car you’re considering.

2018 Lexus GS Length and Weight
  • Length: 16 feet to 16 feet, 2 inches
  • Curb weight: 3,726 to 4,034 pounds
  • Gross vehicle weight rating: 4,830 to 4,960 pounds

Where Was the 2018 Lexus GS Built?

Lexus built the GS in Japan.

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