WITH muscular styling, a wealth of on-board technology, blistering driving dynamics plus all the luxury and sophistication expected in a premium car the Lexus GS 450h seems to have it all.
The petrol-hybrid model in F Sport trim looks fabulous and certainly stands out from the crowd thanks to 19-inch F Sport alloys, LED daytime running lights, triple-LED headlamps with automatic high beam, LED rear lights, F Sport bumpers and grille and a dynamic rear spoiler.
Admittedly, at £51,495, the car is not cheap and the option of metallic paint bumped the price tag up to £52,105. But the closer you inspect the car, the more you appreciate the finer touches featured within.
For example, the gorgeous deep red leather seats can be heated or ventilated. They are electrically adjustable and also have memory settings.
There is electric lumbar support, dual-zone climate control, electric steering wheel adjustment, Bluetooth connectivity, sports pedals, rain-sensing wipers, dusk-sensing headlights and much more.
And when it comes to infotainment the Lexus has it all.
The main 12.3 multi-media screen is navigated via a remote touch control and although it takes a little getting used to, it is simple enough to operate.
The screen view can be split to show different functions such as the sat nav directions and music and in addition, there is the option to further personalise the data on the main instrumentation panel in front of the driver.
Powered by a 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine along with a 650 volt electric motor, the GS 450h may be a hybrid, but it performs like a sports car.
The 0-62mph dash is completed in just 5.9 seconds and it maxes out at a limited 155mph. The economy is pretty impressive too with combined fuel efficiency of 45.6mpg and carbon emissions of 141g/km.
In city centres, the CVT gearbox is quiet and smooth, and parking sensors along with a reversing camera help to make light work of parking. In addition, when reverse gear is engaged the door mirrors automatically angle downwards to improve the driver's view.
But in all honesty, it's out on open roads where the GS 450h excels.
The acceleration is brisk and the road-holding very assured. The cabin is well insulated against engine, road surface and wind noise allowing for full enjoyment of the high-end 17-speaker Mark Levinson audio system.
The driver can select from five different driving modes to alter the car's handling and dynamics, and there are steering wheel-mounted paddles if you want to take extra control over gear changes.
There is ample room for five adults within the car and despite its sleek styling rear seat passengers benefit from ample leg, head and shoulder space.
The boot has a capacity of 451 litres and there are plenty of storage compartments scattered throughout the vehicle.
Lexus has kitted out the GS 450h with a comprehensive list of safety features, including blind spot monitor, rear cross traffic alert, traction control, vehicle stability control, hill-start assist, and the Lexus Safety System+ which introduces pre-crash safety with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, sway warning, traffic sign recognition and an adaptive high beam system.
All in all, the Lexus GS 450h looks the business, is packed with innovative technology, it handles beautifully and is as safe as houses.