With 300 horsepower and 325 lb.-ft. of torque, the GS 430 has the same powerplant that motivates the Lexus flagship LS 430. Just about every trick in the Lexus powerplant book is in evidence, including VVT-I (Lexus’s continuously variable valve timing with intelligence on the intake valves), as well as the Acoustic Control Induction System that optimizes intake-runner length to match engine rpm. This sophisticated V-8 also boasts a drive-by-wire throttle and a computer-controlled ignition system with a separate knock sensor for each cylinder bank. With the help of the quick-shifting standard five-speed automatic transmission, the GS 430 sprints from 0-60 mph in just 5.8 seconds.
An overachieving powertrain like this can put substantial demands on a vehicle’s chassis; luckily no corners were cut in developing the GS 430’s running gear. The GS 430 rides on front and rear double-wishbones fitted with gas-pressurized shocks. Fore and aft anti-roll bars help keep the body flat and stable in the turns. This hardware is affixed to the GS 430’s exceptionally robust unibody via subframes that feature fluid-filled mounts to help isolate the passenger compartment from noise and vibration.
A vehicle-speed-sensitive power rack-and-pinion steering system provides directional control while powerful 4-wheel disc brakes with 4-channel/4-sensor ABS and Brake Assist ensure superb stopping capabilities. The final touch is an integrated Vehicle Skid Control (VSC) system. The standard VSC is switchable on the GS 430 and is calibrated to permit a surprisingly high level of aggressive motoring. More important are its safety advantages since VSC helps the driver maintain control during difficult driving situations like icy roads.