The new lexus gs 2012: design and packaging
• Next generation L-finesse design with Lexus trademark 'spindle' grille for a powerful, commanding road presence
• F SPORT-exclusive exterior and interior design features
• Next generation Lexus interior design combines driver-focused cockpit with advanced Human Machine Interface technologies
• Increased interior space for all vehicle occupants, and increased luggage capacity
• Elegant, contemporary interior design with superb, hand-crafted quality feel
• The world's largest (12.3") on-board multi-information display screen and the second generation Remote Touch Interface (RTI)
• Improved navigation system for broader scope of information
• New, 'S-Flow' energy saving air-conditioning system with air-purifying 'nanoe' technology
The fourth generation GS features an all-new exterior reflecting a further development of Lexus' unique, L-finesse design philosophy, making the car look bolder and more dynamic.
Though remaining the same length, the new GS has a 10mm shorter front overhang, a 10mm longer rear overhang and is 30mm higher than its predecessor. Improving high speed stability, the front track has been increased by 40mm and the rear track by 50mm. Overall vehicle width has increased by 20mm.
Key to the new design is a more aggressive frontal treatment which gives the new GS the powerful, commanding road presence appropriate to a Lexus sports sedan.
In a further evolution of a styling cue first developed on the CT 200h, the inverted trapezoid upper grille and slanted lower grille have been combined and integrated into a single element, bridging the bumper mid-section to create a prominent 'spindle' shape. The brake cooling ducts at either side of the spindle grille combine a distinctive style with engineering functionality.
This bold, elegant and highly individual grille treatment makes the GS instantly recognisable as a Lexus at first glance, and will be adopted throughout the brand to strengthen the Lexus family identity between model ranges.
The grille is flanked by headlamp clusters clearly positioned on a higher plane than the grille itself. This is a unique characteristic of Lexus models, focusing the eye at the very apex of the vehicle to give the design a resolute look and strengthen the impression of speed and agility.
The headlamps themselves are underscored by newly developed, integral LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL) which form the L-finesse arrowhead motif, further reinforcing the unique visual signature of the new GS.
Exclusive to the hybrid GS 450h, a unique three-lamp design aligns the turn signal and Lexus-first high and low beam LED lamps in a single horizontal row. The improved illumination and beam range provided by LED lamps offers significantly superior visibility even under low beam driving conditions.
Integrating sharply sculpted front foglamp housings, the deep front bumper forms a wide, trapezoid shape which anchors muscular front wings and flared wheel arches, reinforcing the new GS's wider front track, broad stance and powerful road presence.
In profile, the new GS shares its predecessor's long, elegant cabin proportions and slingshot window design highlighted by a stainless steel door frame moulding. But a new, 15mm higher roofline reflects the increase in rear passenger accommodation and boot space whilst providing optimum aerodynamic performance for a drag coefficient of Cd 0.26.
The door handle design has been changed, making it easier to grip, and the smart entry lock mechanism has been changed from a push switch to a touch sensor, improving both appearance and operability. The door mirror now incorporates both an LED side turn signal lamp and a puddle lamp. Both the door panel gaps and the gap between wheel arches and tyres have been reduced, further enhancing the appearance of the new GS model range.
To the rear, the new design narrows behind the flared wheel arches, exposing the lower portion of the rear tyre to emphasise the vehicle's wide rear track. LED lamp clusters feature aero-stabilising fins to enhance the aerodynamic efficiency and driving stability of the car. Uniquely, the rear bumper of the GS 450h covers the exhaust pipe apertures.
In addition to its new headlamp design, the new GS 450h may be further identified by hybrid-specific, front, rear and side blue badging.
F SPORT Exclusive Features
The F SPORT package is available across the entire GS model range. F SPORT exterior design features include exclusive front grille and bumper, rear bumper and lip spoiler treatment, 19" alloys and grade-specific badging.
The F SPORT front bumper design features a more three-dimensional form at the sides, incorporating enlarged side grilles. Combined with an exclusive, upper and lower grille mesh design, this reinforces the new GS's more aggressive appearance, wider track and sporting stance.
To the rear, F SPORT petrol engine models feature a grey metallic paint finish to the bumper diffuser. The GS 450h F SPORT diffuser combines grey metallic paint with a chrome plated moulding to the lower section of the bumper to further enhance the vehicle's road presence.
All F SPORT models further benefit from a grade-specific rear spoiler and exclusive, dark premium metallic 19" alloy wheels.
The new GS is available in a choice of 11 colours, including three that are new to the Lexus colour palette: Crimson Red, Meteor Blue and Sonic Silver. Vehicles in Crimson Red benefit from glass flakes incorporated into the coating, adding a high level of brilliance to the paint.
Lexus engineers developed a new advanced coating process for the Sonic Silver finish. The new GS is the first Lexus to adopt this new coating technology. Vehicles with the Sonic Silver exterior appear more radiant as an additional metallic texture gives both strong shading and defined, sharp highlights. This metallic effect makes subtle and defined bodylines more noticeable and the surface appear finely polished.
An ergonomically designed, driver-focused cockpit enabling customers to remain alert and comfortable over long periods of time is an essential requirement of a sports sedan.
The new GS interior represents a continuation of the next generation Lexus interior design theme first seen in the CT 200h. With all functional driving components consolidated in the driver's seat surroundings, it combines outstanding ergonomics with advanced Human Machine Interface technologies.
Driver Focused Cockpit
A clean, elegant dashboard design forms a wide horizontal plane, emphasising the overall roominess of the interior, whilst the door and centre console trim support the driver and front passenger in a secure, cocooned environment.
The dashboard is divided into two distinct zones: an upper Display Zone, with the largest, ultra-wide, 12.3 inch, LCD multi-display screen yet installed in a production car, located at an ideal distance for at-a-glance viewing, and a lower Operation Zone, which allows access to system controls such as the second generation of Lexus' award winning, computer mouse-style Remote Touch Interface (RTI).
Every aspect of the driving position has been carefully considered to create the ideal placement of controls, maximise comfort and minimise driver distraction and fatigue
A new front seat features a lower hip point, placing the driver closer to the GS's centre of gravity, and combines optimum holding ability with superlative comfort. An extended seat sliding range caters for the widest possible cross-section of occupants. As well as a new mid seat back folding adjustment, multiple adjustment mechanisms include a butterfly headrest, shoulder support, side support, 4-way lumbar support, and a cushion length adjustable by 76mm .
The airflow volume of the seat ventilation system has been increased to almost twice that of the current model. And soft padded, tactile finishes to the centre console arm rest, knee pads and door arm rests further enhance the long-distance comfort of the driving position.
The steering wheel features an enlarged, 50mm telescopic reach to bring it closer to the driver, and has been set at a low angle to facilitate large steering inputs without the need for the driver to move their body unnecessarily through over-reaching. Even the cross-section has been painstakingly analysed; no longer uniform throughout the entire circumference of the wheel, its varying profile allows for a relaxing grip and smooth steering inputs.
Brake pedal operability has been optimised with a new pedal shape and surface angle, and the footrest size increased to 300mm for a better fit and greater comfort.
The driver's instrument binnacle incorporates large diameter Optitron dials. Minimising the driver's eye movement from the road ahead, a new Head-Up Display (HUD) relays essential driving information. Its visibility has now been significantly improved. By implementing a wedge-shaped glass for the windshield and the PVC film for displaying information, the clarity of projection has been increased as well as double image projection avoided. The HUD now displays a wider range of information including SPORT mode (tachometer) display and ECO bar display in addition to the speed and audio displays already implemented.
The driver's forward visibility has also been maximised — slim A pillars and a taller windscreen creating a wider field of view. And even the bonnet visibility range has been tailored to allow the driver to readily establish the vehicle extremities, making it easier to place when manoeuvring in confined spaces.
Comfort, Convenience and Contemporary Craftsmanship
Despite having an identical wheelbase length to that of its predecessor, the new GS offers increased space and comfort to all vehicle occupants. Both front and rear door openings have been designed for maximum ease of ingress and egress, with a particular focus on head clearance.
Front cabin occupants benefit from a new seat back design which is more comfortable for taller passengers. A greater seat sliding range and seat height adjustment give an increase in legroom and up to 30mm of extra headroom.
Rear seat passengers benefit from new seats with a revised seat back angle and redesigned cushion shape for greater comfort. A thin front seat design improves knee room by 20mm, and headroom has been increased by 25mm.
Allied to a new, more compact rear suspension layout, a wider opening, increased deck length and reduced deck height combine to make the new GS's luggage space more practical, and significantly increase its volume to up to 566 litres (a 31% increase over the current GS 350). The smart-packaging of the hybrid battery into a stacked format also increased the GS 450h's luggage capacity to up to 482 litres2 (a 61% increase over the current GS 450h).
Throughout the interior, high-quality materials and finishes convey a contemporary, premium look and feel, with a level of craftsmanship and attention to detail for which Lexus is globally renowned.
A new interior colour scheme replaces the traditional two-tone design with a more versatile palette. The dashboard, floor and steering wheel are uniformly black to create a sporting, luxurious feel. And the leather instrument panel features coloured stitching - available in grey and ivory depending on the interior tone- to enhance the premium quality of the cabin environment.
Matching seat and door upholstery will be available in a choice of six colours - Black, Ivory, Grey, Saddle Tan, Topaz Brown and Garnet. In addition to Ebony, Walnut and Bamboo wood finishes, newly developed Black Gloss and Aluminium bring a contemporary, artistic look and feel to the interior ornamentation.
A world first, the steering wheel of the GS 450h will be available in a real bamboo finish, symbolising the innovative spirit and environmental credentials of the vehicle's Lexus Hybrid Drive system.
The GS interior's air of sophistication and luxury is reinforced through Lexus' painstaking attention to detail throughout. It incorporates exquisitely crafted details such as satin metal trim, high quality stitching and the brushed aluminium knobs of the audio system. A new analogue clock with LED indicators, carved from an ingot, adds a unique touch.
This beautifully crafted interior is complimented by an all-white LED interior lighting system which creates an atmosphere appropriate to a premium performance sedan. Reinforcing the GS's highly refined on-board ambience, elements of the LED lighting illuminate to greet the occupants as they approach the car, even before it is unlocked, activating and fading thereafter in sequence with the vehicle starting procedure.
F SPORT Exclusive Features
F SPORT model interior design features include matching door and seat upholstery also available in Garnet -a grade-exclusive colour, combined with newly developed Aluminium ornamentation, 16-way electrically adjustable F SPORT front seats, a black headliner and pillar finish, a dimple perforated leather steering wheel and gear knob, Aluminium pedals and dashboard trim, exclusive black logo scuff plates and F SPORT badging to the steering wheel.
INNOVATIVE ON-BOARD TECHNOLOGIES
Several highly innovative technologies make a first appearance in the new GS model range, including a new, energy saving air-conditioning system with S-Flow and 'nanoe' technologies, a second generation Remote Touch Interface (RTI) linked to the world's largest on-board multi-information display screen, and a choice of audio systems offering unparalleled power and clarity.
Second Generation RTI with 12.3" Multimedia Display
The second generation Lexus Remote Touch Interface (RTI) multi-function control device has been enhanced for increased user-friendliness and ease of operation.
It now features the world's first slide haptic joystick mechanism -a planar slide-type controller that is much like a computer mouse, and the ENTER command is now accomplished by simply pushing the controller. Usability has also been improved through the addition of ambient lighting, and by minimising the difference in height between the RTI controller and the armrest.
RTI allows users to manipulate the cursor quickly and easily across the world's largest on-board multimedia display; a 12.3 inch, full colour, LED screen with an ultra-wide, 24:9 format. The screen's size allows for the permanent display of two types of information simultaneously, such as map/audio, night view/map and navigation input/incoming call.
Improved Navigation System
The new GS' navigation system has been enhanced by using also TPEG (Transport Protocol Expert Group) data including TFP (Traffic Flow and Protection) information, parking lot availability and fees which additionally allows to set a certain parking slot as destination.
S-Flow Air Conditioning with Nanoe Technology
Considerably more powerful than the previous system, the new air-conditioning features S-Flow technology to maintain optimum occupant comfort whilst significantly reducing power consumption. Using sensors it determines if the front passenger seat is occupied. If not, the system automatically closes all vents serving this seat. The same happens to the rear seats when the S-Flow button is switched on. This maximises system efficiency.
In addition the system measures the ambient air temperature, interior air temperature and insolation to determine the optimal level of air conditioning. The target airflow volume is customised for each seat through Temperature Airflow Output (TAO) control. When the thermal load is large (cooldown in summertime, warm-up in winter) air conditioning is implemented in the entire car to quickly obtain a comfortable interior temperature. Once the overall interior temperature is stabilized, the system concentrates only on occupied seats.
During the development of the centralised occupant sensing control system, intensive vehicle tests in wind tunnel facilities were performed. The system was also repeatedly tested on both test courses and actual roads to ensure it maintains comfortable driving in a range of environments.
In addition to the TAO control, upper and lower independent, multilayer air mix technology has been adopted to achieve an environment tailored for both driver, front and rear passengers. This allows for example to set the upper air mix for coolness to deal with effects of solar insolation, and at the same time the lower air mix for warmth.
The new system also introduces a 2-tier Interior / Exterior Air Control which prevents window fogging by inducing low humidity exterior air to the upper half of the cabin while maintaining excellent heating performance in the foot area by circulating interior air. This avoids ventilation losses which are characteristic to conventional control system where cold exterior air is induced into heated interior air.
The new GS is also equipped with a new deodorizing filter, which, in addition to the removal of pollen and dust, etc., also removes exhaust gas from the ambient air.
In addition, the air conditioning system incorporates a new 'nanoe' technology system. This air cleaning technology operates automatically when the air conditioning is turned on. It releases 20 to 50Nm diameter nanoe particles -negatively charged ions wrapped in water molecules- into the cabin via the driver's side dashboard air vent.
By attaching themselves to airborne particles and molecules, the nanoe ions have been said to have both an air purifying and odour eliminating effect. They also deodorise vehicle seats and ceiling to create a cleaner cabin environment.
In addition, because nanoe moisture content is approximately 1,000 times that of conventional ions, the emission of ions bonded to water molecules is said to have a moisturising effect on skin and hair, acting to enhance occupant well-being.
The new GS range may be equipped with a choice of two audio systems.
The standard system represents the next generation of realism and clarity in Lexus sound. It features a fully digital Class-D amplifier capable of creating virtually distortion-free sound with minimal voltage losses. The natural sound dynamics and rich harmonies generated by the high definition amplification are faithfully reproduced by an enhanced, 12-speaker layout which features a new, front three-way system.
The new top of the range 17-speaker Mark Levinson® Premium Audio system creates sound based on the concepts of Effortless Dynamics and Effortless Transient Response, which combine natural dynamics with high response and tracking performance to offer sound quality equivalent to that of a live, concert hall performance.
Using the same technologies as those found in top-end home audio systems, it features a newly developed, Generation III ML5 amplifier. Far outstripping the performance of the current GS sound system, the new amplifier generates 125 Watts per channel and a total of 835 Watts (75W and 505W more power respectively than the current system), whilst consuming just 6.5 Amps —less than a quarter of the power consumed by the current generation system.
Developing twice the volume for the same power consumption, GreenEdgeTM power-saving technology has been incorporated into each of the 17 speakers. GreenEdgeTM technology covers a wider frequency band than conventional systems, giving an enhanced dynamic range.
The new Mark Levinson® system features five, newly-developed, 90mm GreenEdgeTM Unity speakers with a coaxial structure which integrates mid- and high-range units within the same structure. The all-round cabin positioning of the five Unity speakers gives consistent timbre for both front and rear seat occupants, resulting in a whole new level of surround sound, definition, atmosphere and quality.