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Frankfurt 2009: Lexus Officially Announces LS460 Sports Version

Entire Lexus lineup gets long list of tweaks

 |  Sep 16 2009, 5:48 PM

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Lexus chose the Frankfurt Auto Show to debut a mid-cycle redesign for the LS range of luxury sedans with a very long list of upgrades. A new Sports Version was also announced.

The new Sports Version is available as a rear-drive 460 model and gets 19-inch BBS wheels, six-piston Brembo brakes, sports seats and paddle shifters to operate the 8-speed transmission. New transmission settings let the engine hold on to a gear when in “M” model to improve acceleration, while gear changes have been decreased to 0.3 seconds for upshifts and 0.2 seconds for downshifts – with a healthy throttle-blip tossed in. The Sports Version also gets a more sensitive throttle and will kick down gears with less effort.

In addition, the suspension has been upgraded with thicker stabilizer bars in both the front and rear, as well as stiffer spring rates.

The 2010 Lexus LS460 gets a new front grille and redesigned headlights, while out back a larger bumper, restyle diffuser and accentuated exhaust pipes give a more athletic look to the luxury saloon.

An ECO Drive Mode has been added, featuring an Eco Driving Indicator Light and an Eco Drive Range Indicator Display. When the ECO mode is activated the Eco Drive Range Indicator appears in the instrument cluster and lights u once the “zone” of environmentally friendly driving has been exceeded. When that happens, the Eco Driving Indicator Light simultaneously turns off.

Additional changes were made to the air suspension, allowing it to stiffen up sooner for corners, reducing body roll.

As for the range-topping LS600h, it gets a new four-bar grille with a large blue Lexus logo, along with a new front bumper design and new headlights. A new gauge setup includes an LCD screen inside the speedometer that can be customized to show things like vehicle info, navigation instructions and the status of the Lexus Hybrid Drive system.

Like the 460 model, the 600h also gets an ECO mode, however, it is more of an active system than a passive one. In ECO mode the air conditioning is minimized and the throttle response is muted. The 600h, also gets the Sports Version’s powerful six-piston Brembo brakes.

GALLERY: 2010 Lexus LS

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Official release after the jump:

PRESS RELEASE

REVISED LS MODEL RANGE
•    LS 600h bespoke, hybrid-exclusive styling details, improved packaging, Lexus Hybrid Drive powertrain enhancements including Eco drive mode and Brembo brakes
•    LS 460 driving dynamics – EURO V compliant 4.6 litre V8, revised air suspension system and enhanced Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS)
•    LS 460 2WD Sports version featuring exclusive sports seats, dynamic powertrain and suspension tuning, paddle shift manual override gear change and Brembo brakes
•    Updated LS model range exterior and interior design with redesigned front and rear seating
•    Upgraded audio and new HDD navigation systems incorporating 10GB Sound Library facility
•    Eco drive mode with bespoke air conditioning setting for improved fuel economy
Making its world debut at the 2009 Frankfurt motorshow, a revised LS model range incorporates updated exterior and interior design, redesigned seating, comprehensively updated equipment and enhanced driving dynamics.
Reinforcing its unique status as the world’s only full hybrid vehicle in the premium luxury saloon segment, the Lexus LS 600h may now be instantly identified as the high performance flagship of the LS model range through bespoke exterior and interior styling cues, improved packaging, and numerous enhancements to the vehicle’s Lexus Hybrid Drive system.
A sports version of the LS 460 2WD also makes its world premier, featuring bespoke 19” forged alloy BBS wheels, dynamic powertrain and suspension tuning, powerful, 380mm Brembo brakes, a steering wheel-mounted, paddle shift manual override gear change, and sports seats with reinforced support.
UNIQUE LS 600h FULL HYBRID FEATURES
The LS 600h flagship’s unique status as the world’s only full hybrid vehicle in the premium luxury saloon segment has now been further reinforced through bespoke exterior and interior styling cues, improved packaging, and numerous enhancements to the vehicle’s Lexus Hybrid Drive system.
The LS 600h features a unique, four-bar hybrid grille with a hybrid blue logo, and a new front bumper design with enhanced air intake performance and revised fog lamp detailing. The headlamp clusters feature a tailor-made running light design, and are finished in Lexus hybrid blue to instantly identify the LS 600h as the full hybrid flagship of the LS model range.
In profile, the LS 600h may be identified through hybrid badging to the door bottom moulding and, to the rear, features a unique lower bumper design incorporating vertical fins to smooth the airflow and improve high speed driving stability. Both the Lexus logo and the rear lamp cluster are finished in hybrid blue to reinforce the LS 600h’s full hybrid credentials.
The revised, full hybrid LS 600h will be available in a choice of eleven exterior colours including three newly adopted colours; 
Red Morello, Sand Ecru and Deep Emerald, as well as two newly developed colours; Midnight Blue and a hybrid-exclusive 
Shadow Sapphire.
The interior is further enhanced through the adoption of an innovative new driver’s instrument binnacle incorporating a full colour, TFT LCD display. The display features a bespoke, three-ring analogue dial with a central speedometer, a tachometer and coolant gauge to the left and a fuel gauge and hybrid system indicator to the right. The centre of the speedometer functions as a customisable monitor which may be tailored to display vehicle information, turn-by-turn navigation instruction and Lexus Hybrid Drive system status.
Five interior colour schemes are available, including three exclusive to the full hybrid LS 600h; Black with Ivory, Black with Mellow White, and a new Venaro Grey.
Combining the 394 DIN hp/290 kW power of a 5.0 litre V8 with an electric motor output of 224 DIN hp/165 kW, the LS 600h’s Lexus Hybrid Drive system generates a peak combined output rating of 445 DIN hp/327 kW. The Lexus flagship will accelerate from 0-100km/h in 6.3 seconds, and on to an electronically limited top speed of 250km/h. Conversely, the full hybrid returns a combined fuel consumption figure of 9.3l/100km, and CO2 emissions of 218g/km.
The further development of the Lexus Hybrid Drive system’s 5.0 litre V8 sees its enhanced environmental performance now fully compliant with EURO V exhaust emission standards. In addition, the hybrid system battery modules have been split into two, 6- and 14-module sections in order to reduce the overall size of the battery pack and increase vehicle luggage capacity.
Linked to an indicator within the speedometer, a new ECO mode provides a modified, non-linear throttle action and air conditioning control to support fuel efficient driving. The relationship between pedal movement and system output is automatically controlled to reduce throttle response to aggressive accelerator pedal inputs, thus improving fuel economy and promoting smoother driving. The A/compact load on the engine is also reduced more dramatically under acceleration, further improving fuel efficiency.
Enhancing the Lexus full hybrid flagship’s dynamic abilities, the LS 600h is now equipped with large, 380mm ventilated front discs brakes, the 6-piston callipers, rotors and pads of which have been jointly developed by Brembo SpA. Featuring high mu pads to reduce abnormal noise and vibration, the new brakes provide excellent feel and the fade-free, high speed stopping power appropriate to the all-wheel drive, high performance dynamic credentials of the Lexus full hybrid flagship.
UNIQUE LS 460 FEATURES
The LS 460 features a new grille of a more powerful, five bar design. Redesigned headlamp clusters feature more expressive styling of the running lamps and side reflectors, and the running lamp itself now comprises eight white LEDs for enhanced illumination and a more powerful road presence.
To the rear, an increased bumper width incorporating a restyled diffuser and more perceptibly trapezoidal exhausts reinforces the Lexus flagship’s broad, powerful stance. And a wider, deeper license plate surround is flanked by re-styled, clear lens tail lamp clusters.
Accompanied by a new 18” alloy wheel design, the revised LS 460 will be available in a choice of ten exterior colours including three newly adopted colours; Morello Red, Sand Ecru and Deep Emerald, as well as one newly developed colour; 
Midnight Blue.
The LS 460’s 4.6 litre V8 is the most technologically advanced internal combustion engine ever developed by Lexus engineers. It develops 380 DIN hp/280 kW at 6,400 rpm, and maximum torque of 493 Nm at 4,100 rpm. Driving the rear wheels through a unique, 8-speed automatic transmission, it will accelerate the Lexus from 0 to 100km/h in only 5.7 seconds. The LS 460 will travel from a standstill to 400m in 14.0 seconds and on to a top speed of 250km/h (electronically limited).
Despite these impressive performance figures, the 4.6 litre unit returns an excellent 11.1l/100km in the combined cycle, and CO2 emissions of 261g/km.
This outstanding powerplant has now been further developed with an enhanced environmental performance to fully comply with EURO V exhaust emission standards.
A new ECO Drive Mode incorporates an Eco Driving Indicator Light and an Eco Drive Range Indicator Display to help LS 460 owners drive in the most environmentally friendly, fuel efficient manner. Both Eco driving aids are activated by the ECO drive Mode switch. The Eco Drive Range Indicator Display appears as a bar graph within the driver’s instrument display screen, flashing when the Zone of Eco Driving has been exceeded. Also housed in the driver’s instrument binnacle, the Eco Driving Indicator Light is simultaneously turned off to highlight non-fuel efficient driving.
The optional air suspension system has also been revised to improve the dynamic performance of the LS 460. The roll posture control logic of the Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) control has been enhanced to improve steering response on turn-in. New shock absorbers with an improved response even in the low damping range have been adopted. A rotary valve port has been introduced between the main and sub-valves to improve oil flow and enhance damping response. In addition, the port diameter has been optimised and the variable width from the low to the high step has been equalised to improve control response.
LS 460 2WD SPORTS VERSION
Available in specific countries, a Sports Version of the LS 460 2WD can be identified through bespoke, 19” forged aluminium BBS wheels.
On board, the Sports Version benefits from the significant design and equipment upgrades of the revised LS model range, with the addition of purpose-made sports seats. The seats provide both enhanced holding performance and comfort through increased thigh, hip and shoulder support, while changes in posture have been suppressed by minimising forward slipping of the pelvis under braking.
The 8-speed automatic transmission has been equipped with Sports steering wheel-mounted manual override paddle shift control, operable in both ‘D’ and ‘M’ shift modes, and a more powerful, responsive driving performance has been achieved through the specific tuning of the Sports version’s Power Mode characteristics.
When driving in ‘M’ mode, Gear Step Hold Control holds the selected gear to fully exploit the engine’s maximum rpm. A highly responsive upshift control logic increases the speed of gear changes to just 0.3 seconds, and a blipping downshift control logic has also been adopted to reduce gear changing times to only 0.2 seconds.
In addition, the drive power characteristics generated by the Driving Response and Acceleration Management System (DRAMS) have been exclusively tuned for the Sports version. Bespoke throttle mapping provides direct, linear engine power and torque, while revised gear control holds a lower gear during sports driving for improved acceleration out of corners, and enhances kick-down performance for improved overtaking acceleration.
The LS 460 2WD Sports Version also features several suspension system revisions to enhance the Lexus saloon’s dynamic 
performance and offer increased driving pleasure and involvement. Both front and rear stabiliser bar performance has been improved, the former adopting a 2mm thicker material, the latter an increase in bar diameter to 21mm. Air suspension revisions include an increase in the spring constant of both front and rear pneumatic springs, and an increase in the spring constant of the front shock absorber rebound spring allied to reduced clearance, further suppressing roll tendencies and enhancing cornering stability.
Providing the fade-free stopping power appropriate to the Sports Version’s enhanced dynamic credentials, the vehicle is equipped with large, 380mm drilled and ventilated front discs brakes, the 6-piston callipers, rotors and pads of which have been jointly developed by Brembo SpA.
LS MODEL RANGE UPGRADES
Exterior Design
Though model-specific detailing of elements such as the front grille, headlamps, rear bumper and exhausts now clearly differentiate the LS 600h from the LS 460, several new exterior design features are common to the entire LS model range.
Within an overall length increase of 30mm, the revised LS range features a new front bumper design incorporating a larger, three-part engine bay air intake detailed to reinforce the visual strength of the L-finesse arrowhead motif represented in both the headlamps and grille.
In profile, the revised LS range now features a one-piece rocker moulding, and new door mirrors incorporate a chrome-highlighted, twin LED lamp turn signal as well as puddle lamp entry and egress illumination.
A new, highly elastic “Self-restoring Coat” has also been developed to help maintain the Lexus flagship’s superb paint finish over the lifetime of the vehicle.
Interior Design
The dashboard centre console has been re-designed. The upper air vents have been visually separated from the centre console instrumentation. This gives a stronger horizontal emphasis, reinforcing the spaciousness of the LS model range’s high quality interior.
The EMV multi-display touch screen surround now features larger switches, and a revised audio switch layout for improved visibility and operability. The use of real aluminium for the Audio switch knob further enhances the premium texture and quality of the design. The backlighting of the screen itself has been changed to LED, improving both the brightness and performance of the display.
Both front seats now incorporate a new, inflator-operated, active headrest design. Activated by a signal from the airbag ECU during rear end collisions, the inflator slides a piston into the headrest, unlocks the mechanism and projects the headrest forwards and upwards to support the occupant’s head, minimising the risk of whiplash injury.
The driver’s seat also features a new, return/away function. Linked to the steering wheel auto return/way function and activated when the drive unfastens the seatbelt and switches the engine off, this system automatically slides the seat back by up to 50mm for maximum ease of entry and egress, returning the seat to the driving position once the car is started.
Rear Seat Relaxation Package
The Lexus Rear Seat Relaxation Package is available for the first time in conjunction with a 5-seat configuration. Operated via a remote controller, the 40:20:40 split premium seat incorporates a power upper seatback reclining mechanism, a fully retractable leg and foot rest, and a lower back vibrator. It also provides massage pressure by inflating and deflating eight pneumatic chambers built into the seat back, lumbar and shoulder areas at varying intensities.
The rear seats themselves have been redesigned. The horizontal suspension position of the seat has been moved forwards 45mm to improve hip-area fit, and the shape of the seat surface outer sides has been plumped by up to 10mm to enhance side support.
New rear seat headrests offer improved support. The thickness of the urethane pad has been increased by 5mm, and the angle of the headrest sides may be adjusted to a maximum of 30 degrees.
Housing seat controls, earphone jacks and the remote control for the relaxation system, the centre armrest has been redesigned with a lid sliding range of 80mm.
Power and Rear Relaxation Package seats feature integral SRS side airbags, and the seat behind the front passenger in 40:20:40 split Rear Seat Relaxation Package configurations incorporates an SRS seat cushion airbag to further restrain the occupant below the hips in the event of a collision.
Models equipped with the Rear Seat Relaxation Package also now offer an extra front seat position 40mm forward of its standard foremost sliding range. Operated in conjunction with the rear seat retractable leg and foot rest function, the front passenger seat can be moved to the full front or return position via either a control switch in the rear centre armrest or a switch on the seat shoulder. When the front seat is in the extra forward position, the headrest is automatically retracted to improve rear seat occupant visibility.
A reduction in the size of the rear air conditioning unit has increased boot capacity by approximately 35 litres. In models not equipped with a spare tyre, removing the upper luggage floor mat gives a further increase in capacity of some 60 litres.
Equipment
Fitted as standard to all LS models, a new Lexus Navigation System benefits from a powerful, 40GB HDD capacity, making it one of the fastest, most accurate systems on the market. It covers the whole of Europe, and includes the traffic information infrastructure of each country. The new system features upgraded voice recognition, with four additional languages including Russian, and a new menu that can be operated in 14 languages including Cyrillic characters.
The LS 460 may be fitted with a choice of Lexus premium sound systems and a 19-speaker Mark Levinson® Premium Surround Sound System for the reproduction of perfect 7.1-channel surround sound on selected CDs and DVDs.
All systems are DAB ready, and also now offer both USB and audio jack plug connectivity for the fully controlled use of portable music players such as iPods, and Bluetooth® mobile phone connectivity with an audio streaming function. In addition, benefiting from the navigation system’s HDD hard drive, the audio systems also feature a ‘Sound Library’ facility, using Compact Disc Data Base technology to transfer and store music files up to a 10GB, 2000 song capacity.
The revised LS model range features a new, automatic high beam system. A camera sensor located on the rear view mirror detects oncoming traffic, street lamps and vehicles travelling ahead, and automatically switches the high beams on and off according to driving conditions.
Across the LS model range, the air conditioning system has also been adapted to run as efficiently as possible when ECO Drive Mode has been selected. When the outside air temperature is 20 degrees or higher, the interior air recirculation mode is automatically selected to reduce power consumption. Blower airflow when set to ‘High’ is reduced and the operation of the supplemental electrical heating system (PTcompact heater) stopped, both measures further minimising system power consumption. And fuel consumption has been reduced by cancelling system requests for engine speed increase when the vehicle is at idle.
The optional Rear Seat Entertainment system is now available for LS models equipped with the VIP 5 seat configuration. Both high resolution 9” VGA monitor and DVD player are housed in a bespoke unit built into the rear of the centre console. Operated by a revised, user-friendly remote control unit, the DVD player has been enhanced with improved sound quality and additional media compatibility via an adjacent VTR terminal and ACcompact connector. The system now supports 5.1 channel output, DVD and R/RW media, WMA data playback and Region 5 (Russia) formatted DVDs.

REVISED GS MODEL RANGE
•    GS 450h bespoke, hybrid-exclusive styling details
•    GS 450h CO2 emissions reduced to 179g/km with 17” wheels
•    Upgraded audio and new HDD navigation systems incorporating 10GB Sound Library facility
•    Enhanced safety with active front headrests and Pre-Crash Safety incorporating pre-crash brake technology
•    Revised exterior and interior colours
The 2010 GS model range features upgraded audio and navigation systems, enhanced safety features and new exterior and interior colours. New, hybrid-exclusive exterior styling cues identify the GS 450h as the high performance flagship of the model range.
GS Model Range
The 2010 GS model range features upgraded audio and navigation systems. A new Lexus Navigation System benefits from a powerful, 40GB HDD capacity. It features upgraded voice recognition, with four additional languages including Russian, and a new menu that can be operated in 14 languages including Cyrillic characters. In addition, a Russian language option has been added to the multi-information display.
The GS may be fitted with a 10-speaker Lexus premium sound system or a 14-speaker Mark Levinson® Premium Surround Sound System for the reproduction of perfect 5.1-channel surround sound on selected CDs and DVDs.
Both systems are DAB ready, and also now offer both USB and audio jack plug connectivity for the fully controlled use of portable music players such as iPods, and Bluetooth® mobile phone connectivity with an audio streaming function. In addition, benefiting from the navigation system’s HDD hard drive, the audio systems also feature a ‘Sound Library’ facility, using Compact Disc Data Base technology to transfer and store music files up to a 10GB, 2000 song capacity.
A revised Pre-Crash Safety System now supports the pre-crash seatbelt and pre-crash brake assist functions with pre-crash brake technology. Both front seats now incorporate a new, inflator-operated, active headrest design. Activated by a signal from the airbag ECU during rear end collisions, the inflator slides a piston into headrest, unlocks the mechanism and projects the headrest forwards and upwards to support the occupant’s head, minimising the risk of whiplash injury.
The 2010 GS will be available in a choice of 11 exterior colours, with three new colours –Sand Ecru, Deep Emerald and Midnight Blue- added to the range. A choice of four interior colours includes a new Ivory and a GS 450h hybrid-exclusive Venaro Grey semi-aniline leather colour scheme.
Unique GS 450h Full Hybrid Design Features
The GS 450h’s status as the high performance flagship of the model range has now been further reinforced through several bespoke styling cues. A new front grille design incorporates horizontal bars of varying thickness, the hybrid blue rear lamps clusters have been modified to incorporate larger, transparent outer lenses, and a new, 18” aluminium wheel design is available.
The interior is hallmarked by a new, hybrid blue backlit engine stop/start button, and a hybrid-exclusive Venaro Grey semi-aniline leather colour scheme featuring black stitching and a grey bird’s-eye maple wood grain trim finish.

Audio and Navigation System Upgrades
•    New navigation system with 40GB Hard Disk Drive (HDD) capacity available across the entire Lexus model range
•    Birds-Eye View mapping, upgraded voice recognition available in 7 languages including Russian, menu and voice guidance in 14 languages (including Cyrillic characters)
•    New DAB ready sound systems with standard USB, Bluetooth® connectivity and audio streaming.
•    10GB Sound Library facility with storage for up to 2000 songs
Having made its debut in the new generation RX, the new Lexus HDD Navigation System is now available across the entire Lexus model line-up.
The system benefits from a powerful, 40GB HDD capacity, making it one of the fastest, most accurate systems on the market. It covers the whole of Europe (including Russia), and includes the traffic information infrastructure of most countries (14 in total). The new system features Birds-Eye View mapping, upgraded voice recognition, with four additional languages including Russian, and a new menu that can be operated in 14 languages including Cyrillic characters.
Also available across the entire Lexus model range Lexus and Mark Levinson Premium sound systems offer DAB as an option. They also offer both USB and audio jack plug connectivity for the fully controlled use of portable music players such as iPods,…, and Bluetooth® mobile phone connectivity with an audio streaming function. In addition, the navigation system’s Hard Disk Drive also features a ‘Sound Library’ facility, using Compact Disc Data Base technology to transfer and store music files up to a 10GB capacity.
The upgraded audio and HDD navigation systems are controlled via Lexus’ renowned touch-screen technology, which has been designed to offer drivers easy, intuitive access to every function within three control steps.
Drivers of the latest generation RX model range further benefit from Remote Touch system control. Integral to the new HDD navigation system, Remote Touch is an innovative multi-function device offering simple, intuitive control over the audio, navigation, climate, phone and vehicle set-up systems. Located immediately in front of the cushioned central armrest for comfortable control, the Remote Touch knob operates on the same principles as a computer mouse. It allows the user to move a cursor quickly and easily over a selection of on-screen icons, and incorporates reaction force feedback for enhanced tactility.