First introduced for the 2013 model year, the fourth-generation Lexus GS represented a new direction for the mid-size luxury sedan. Positioned as an updated answer to the 2017 Mercedes-Benz E Class and 2017 BMW 5 Series, it was built on an entirely new platform, powered by a range of more powerful, fuel-efficient engines and featured new styling that included one of the first iterations of the polarizing Lexus spindle grille.

In the past, we praised the GS for its menacing looks, high-quality interior and versatility, but dinged it for its dated infotainment system, lacking performance (though, this was largely remedied with the 2015 GS 350 F-Sport) and pricey options list. Overall, a very competent car in a very competitive segment.

Now it’s mid-cycle refresh time for the fourth-generation GS, and Lexus has tweaked things for the 2016 model year with some new styling updates, including a distinctive new take on the spindle grille that’s gone full Predator mouth, and an updated range of engines that adds a new turbocharged, four-cylinder option.

Updated 09/22/2015: We’ve added a series of new photos we took at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show. Find them in the "Pictures" tab.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2016 Lexus GS.

  • 2016 Lexus GS
  • Year:
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
  • Torque @ RPM:
  • Displacement:
    2.0 L
  • 0-60 time:
    6 sec. (Est.)
  • Top Speed:
    155 mph (Est.)
  • Price:
    48600 (Est.)
  • car segment:
  • body style:


2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Exterior
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2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Exterior
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2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Exterior
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Most of the body panels remain unchanged from the pre-facelift GS, but the front is where most of the visual updates are found. First, there’s that grille. Whereas the old grille was bisected by a horizontal bumper cover, the new one is a single element, with several black horizontal slats from top to bottom. Is it an improvement? That’s your call, but we’re starting to get used to Lexus’s new corporate face.

Both front and rear light clusters are new too. The fronts are now separated into two elements, with the high- and low-beam lamps sitting above Lexus’s barb-shaped LED strip embedded within the front body work. The rear lights are the same shape, but are updated with a new LED arrangement. The machine-finish, web-spoke wheels are new too, and are presumably one of several wheel options that Lexus says will be available in both 18- and 19-inch sizes.

The rear bumper and rocker panels have also been subtly reshaped, but overall the GS retains its fairly conservative, yet handsome shape and adds a few flamboyant updates to help it look a little more with-the-times.

Side-by-side comparison

2016 Lexus GS
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2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Interior
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2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Interior
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2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Interior
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Like the exterior, the GS’s interior has received a few small but important updates. New leather colors include Chateau, Noble Brown and F-Sport-exclusive Rioja Red. Each can be paired with some intriguing new trim selections that include laser cut wood, Matte Walnut, Linear 3D and Naguri Aluminum, also exclusive to the F-Sport package.

Navigations now comes standard with the GS 350 and GS 450h, and all variants get a larger 4.2-inch multi-function display embedded in the gauge cluster. The 12.3-inch center console screen is navigated via a new Remote Touch Interface track pad, which adds new side ‘enter’ buttons. Bluetooth connectivity, DVD video compatibility, MP3 sound enhancement and 5.1 surround sound are standard, while a 17-speaker Mark Levinson 7.1 sound system is optional.

Overall, the interior is well-appointed without being too busy. The steering wheel has a new, almost Ferrari-like look to it and the dash layout is intuitive. We’ll have to get behind the wheel to see what kind of improvements have made for the infotainment system, but other than that, the GS looks like a nice place to spend a commute.


2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Drivetrain
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This is probably where the biggest news is. In addition to the G3 350 and GS 450h, a new four-cylinder engine option has been added, with the GS 200t. The new 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine produces a healthy 241 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, and Lexus promises exceptional smoothness and outstanding power delivery. With an estimated 33 mpg, it’s also nearly as fuel-efficient as the GS 450h, which does 34 on the highway.

Moving up in the range will land you in the GS 350. The 3.5-liter V-6 features both direct and port injection and now produces 311 horsepower and 277 pound-feet of torque, an improvement of five horsepower and three pound feet of torque over the previous GS 350. Both the GS 350 and GS 200t use the same eight-speed automatic transmission to power the rear wheels.

The fastest GS is also the most fuel efficient. With 338 horsepower, the range-topping GS 450h’s output remains unchanged, but it’s still good enough to propel it to 60 mph in a brisk 5.6 seconds. Working through a continuously variable transmission, the GS 450h gets 29 mpg in-town and 34 mpg on the highway, which is unchanged from previous.

Drivetrain Specifications

Model GS 200t GS 350 GS 450h
Type 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder 3.5-liter V6 Atkinson cycle 3.5-liter V6 engine and a water-cooled permanent-magnet electric motor
Output 241 HP 311 HP 338 HP
Torque 258 LB-FT 280 LB-FT -


2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Exterior
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All GS variants get an array of new passive and active safety features, including 10 airbags and all the assisted driving features you would expect in a modern mid-size land yacht. The 2016 GS adds an optional Lexus Safety System + package, that combines (we hope you like acronyms) Pre-Collision System (PCS), Pedestrian Detection, Lane Departure Alert (LDA), Steering Assist, Intelligent High Beam (IHB) and All-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control.

All GSs get front knee airbags, seat-mounted side airbags, and side curtain airbags. The specially designed seats also reduce the amount of space between occupants’ heads and headrests to reduce the likelihood of whiplash in rear-end collisions.


2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Exterior
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Lexus is yet to announce pricing for the 2016 GS lineup, but look for a slight price bump for the both the $48,600 GS 350 and $61,330 GS 450h. Expect the GS 200t to come in at around $43,000. Like the previous GS, options are likely to be pricey, and will include the $6,130 F Sport package.


2017 BMW 5 Series

2017 BMW 5 Series Exterior Spyshots
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The BMW 5 Series is going to be completely new for the 2017 model year, but the current one remains one of the most well-rounded mid-size luxury sedans on the market. A 2014 mid-cycle refresh brought with it updated looks and a range of more powerful engines, including a new four-cylinder diesel and more powerful twin-turbo V-8 variant.

It offers far more engine options than the Lexus, from both diesel and gasoline four-cylinders the way up the to the 560-horsepower M5, as well as two new trim options as of 2014, BMW Luxury Line and BMW Modern Line. All-wheel-drive is optional across the entire range too, but with a starting price of the just over $50,000, the 5 Series is a bit pricier.

Read more about the 2017 BMW 5 Series here.

2016 Audi A6

2016 - 2018 Audi A6 High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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The current Audi A6 remains one of the best looking cars in the mid-size luxury segment, and has the dynamics and amenities to match. Engine options are a bit limited, but both the 220-horsepower 2.0-liter and 310 horsepower 3.0-liter are more than capable. There’s also the 450-horsepower 2016 Audi S6, if you crave a bit more performance.

With a starting price of $42,200, the A6 represents a relative bargain in the segment, but prices can get out of control once you start checking option boxes for the many packages on offer. Quattro all-wheel-drive is either optional or standard, depending on which engine you go with, but Audi continues to refuse to offer a rear-wheel-drive option, which I’ve also found a little off-putting.

Read more about the 2016 Audi A6 here.


The GS has always been competent, if a bit dull, and the 2016 model adds a bit of zip to its looks and brings it in line with the current Lexus model range. The changes aren’t exactly Earth shattering, but many of the foibles we experienced the previous GS seem to have been addressed. The new four-cylinder engine option also offers respectable performance and excellent fuel economy at what we anticipate will be a much lower cost.

  • Leave it
    • Not sure we would take one over its German rivals.
    • Options can add up quickly.
    • Performance still a bit lacking compared to rivals.
James Wolfcale
About the author

Press Release

The Pebble Beach Concours d’ Elegance, the premier concours event in the United States, is an appropriate setting for the 2016 Lexus GS models to be introduced. The GS enters 2016 with a bolder design, a new GS 200t rear-wheel drive model and new luxury finishes that match the refinement of Monterey. The Lexus GS continues to feature impressive agility and sporty handling for turns along California Highway 1, as well as comfortable ride quality for extended highway driving. This is no modest mid-size luxury sedan. The engaging performance and amenities make the GS 200t, the GS 350 or GS 450h an excellent choice for delighting enthusiast drivers as well as luxury connoisseurs.

2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Exterior
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The Lexus GS epitomizes the intersection of style and refinement with a strong rendition of the Lexus signature spindle grille for 2016, framed by elegant satin chrome trim and flanked by distinctive new standard Bi-LED headlights. The nighttime glow is unmistakably the look of Lexus.

A new front bumper and rocker panel design further sharpen the coupe-inspired profile, with the makeover extending to revised taillights, revised rear trim and new 18- and 19-inch machine-finish wheel designs. Bold design deserves bold color, and so the 2016 GS offers new Matador Red Mica, Nightfall Mica and Ultrasonic Blue Mica 2.0 among other choices. The mica colors use an extraordinarily complex multi-layered, twice-baked process previously used only for concept vehicles or custom cars.

Every year Pebble Beach brings together the best in elegance and technology from decades past. The 2016 Lexus GS presents a modern interpretation—exemplified by new interior trim selections including laser cut wood, Matte Walnut, Linear 3D and for the F SPORT, Naguri aluminum. New interior and leather colors include Chateau and Noble Brown, while the F SPORT adds Rioja Red to available choices. The analog clock located in the center of the dash is housed in a single ingot of aluminum and uses LED indicators. It adds new GPS functionality for adjusting the time zone.

2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Exterior
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New Power and Efficiency
A new, third model, the rear-wheel drive GS 200t, joins the line with an exceptionally smooth 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine teamed with an eight-speed automatic transmission. The turbo engine delivers 241 hp and 258 lb.-ft. of torque, giving the GS 200t outstanding all-around performance and efficiency. The GS 200t has a Lexus fuel economy estimate of 33 mpg highway.

In the GS 350, a more muscular 3.5-liter V6 produces 311 hp and 280 lb.-ft. of torque (vs. 306 hp and 277 lb.-ft. in the 2015 model) and is also paired with the eight-speed automatic. The V6’s combination of direct fuel injection and additional port fuel injectors ensures ample power and crisp responsiveness.

Leading the GS lineup is a car you’d expect from the luxury hybrid leader, the GS 450h – a high-performing hybrid. Its Lexus Hybrid Drive system combines output from an Atkinson cycle 3.5-liter V6 engine and a water-cooled permanent-magnet electric motor for 338 total system horsepower, channeled through a planetary-type continuously variable transmission. Few might expect 5.6-second zero-to-60 mph acceleration performance from a car that also has EPA estimated 29 mpg city, 34 mpg highway and 31 mpg combined fuel economy ratings.

More Grip, More Grins
For added grip, the Lexus GS 350 offers an available all-weather drive system that’s more than a foul-weather friend. An electronically controlled center differential provides a normal 30:70 torque split, with the rear-wheel bias favoring handling agility. The system reacts instantaneously to alter the split to as much as 50:50, depending on driving conditions, to help optimize traction.

For added grins when driving, the F SPORT package available for all three GS models combines track-tuned chassis enhancements, including staggered tire sizes (RWD only), with exclusive exterior and interior design features. On the GS 350, F SPORT can be combined with all-weather drive. With rear-wheel drive, the F SPORT package opens the door to higher handling performance with the available Lexus Dynamic Handling (LDH) system with Dynamic Rear Steering (DRS).

New Lexus Safety System +
The 2016 Lexus GS is a rolling testament to the brand’s commitment to cutting-edge safety technology. Its structure and 10 standard airbags form the foundation for occupant protection, while a wide array of driver-assist technologies helps the driver avoid hazards. New and optional for 2016 is Lexus Safety System + which combines Pre-Collision System (PCS) with Pedestrian Detection, Lane Departure Alert (LDA) with Steering Assist, Intelligent High Beam (IHB) and All-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control.

All-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control works at a range of speeds. It tracks the speed of the vehicle traveling ahead and can adjust the speed setting accordingly to help maintain a preset distance. It’s sophisticated enough to smoothly adjust acceleration and deceleration when a vehicle enters or exits the lane or highway ahead.

Using a combination of millimeter-wave radar and a front-facing camera, PCS can help detect vehicles — and in some circumstances, pedestrians. The system can warn the driver of a possible collision and can initiate automatic braking with Brake Assist if necessary.

2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Exterior
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Using a camera to detect visible lane markings, Lane Departure Alert is designed to convey audio-visual alerts and vibrate the steering wheel if the system determines that the driver unintentionally deviated from the lane. Lane Departure Alert, with Steering Assist enabled, can help the vehicle stay in the center of its lane by smoothly increasing steering torque a small amount to assist in maintaining course.

Intelligent High Beam combines technology, safety and driving courtesy. It automatically adjusts high- and low-beam illumination by sensing not only oncoming traffic, but also the taillights of the vehicle traveling in front.

Modern Multimedia
Lexus gave the GS models new multimedia for 2015, and now for 2016, the available 12.3-inch screen gains full-screen map capability when equipped with navigation. Other multimedia changes include enhanced voice recognition and graphics.The screen can split into two sections to show different functions, such as navigation, audio and climate control information. For GS 350 and GS 450h models, navigation is now standard.

New side “enter” buttons on the Remote Touch Interface controller and shortcut menu on the side of the screen make it even easier to operate climate control, audio, phone, navigation and more.

Apple iPhone® users have yet another control option — Siri® Eyes Free Mode. Make calls, select songs from iTunes®, get turn-by-turn navigation through Apple Maps, and much more, all by asking Siri.

Lexus Enform
Catering to its customers’ active lifestyles, Lexus Enform continues to expand its services and technologies. For 2016, new Lexus Enform Service Connect gives the GS a voice, in a sense, to relay its maintenance needs. Use the MyLexusandBeyond mobile app (for iOS devices) or website to set push-reminders and alerts for maintenance and service issues. For example, a required maintenance warning light will alert you and your dealer the specific factory recommended maintenance for a specific maintenance interval.

With Lexus Enform Remote (one-year trial subscription included), the customer can remotely view and control certain aspects of the GS using a mobile app for iOS and Android devices. Functions include remote door lock/unlock; remote start/stop for the engine and climate control; vehicle finder, guest driver monitor and more.

Navigation is accompanied by the Lexus Enform Destination Services and subscription-free Lexus Enform App Suite. Its voice-enabled apps let you search the Internet through Destination Search, make restaurant reservations using OpenTable®, get movie tickets via™, listen to Internet radio, (including Pandora®, iHeartRadio and Slacker), search business reviews on Yelp® and check in on Facebook Places™.

Lexus Enform Safety Connect is standard on all 2016 Lexus vehicles, with emergency calling capability and access to Lexus Enform response centers 24/7/365.

What’s New for 2016

New GS 200t model has 241-hp, 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine and eight-speed automatic transmission.
More power for GS 350 – now 311 hp and 280 lb.-ft. torque from 3.5-liter V6.
Restyled front end with bolder Lexus spindle grille and Bi-LED headlights, and revised tail lamps and rear bumper treatments.
New available Lexus Safety System + combines Pre-Collision System (PCS) with Pedestrian Detection, Lane Departure Alert (LDA) with Steering Assist, Intelligent High Beam (IHB) and All-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control.
Standard Navigation for GS 350 and GS 450h models
Larger 4.2-inch multi-information display puts vital vehicle data at a quick glance in driver’s line of sight.
Upgraded multimedia technology: side “enter” buttons on Remote Touch Interface (RTI) and full screen map capability for available navigation with 12.3-inch central display screen.
New available Lexus Enform Service Connect provides maintenance and service information accessed from smartphone app or website.
New exterior and interior colors, wheel designs and interior wood and aluminum trim selections.
Analog clock adds GPS time zone functionality.

2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Exterior
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GS 200t: 241-hp, 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with dual Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i).
GS 350: 311 horsepower, 3.5-liter DOHC V6 with dual Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i).
GS 450h: Lexus Hybrid Drive system combining output from an Atkinson cycle 3.5-liter V6 gasoline engine and a water-cooled permanent-magnet electric motor for 338 total system horsepower.
GS 200t and GS 350: eight-speed sequential shift automatic transmission with paddle shifters and sport driving logic (RWD)
GS 450h: planetary-type electronically controlled continuously variable transmission with two-speed reduction (for “kickdown” functionality), Snow mode and paddle shifters.


Front and rear aluminum control arms help reduce unsprung weight and endow the GS with exemplary agility, sway damping, ride comfort, body control and steering precision.
Ventilated disc brakes feature four-piston aluminum front calipers and are equipped with the latest electronic enhancements to help provide braking balance and control.
Standard 17-inch nine-spoke alloy wheels with 235/50R17 tires for GS 200t, and standard 18-inch alloy wheels with 235/45R18 tires for GS 350.
Available GS F SPORT is exclusively equipped with 19-inch staggered width wheels paired with 235/40R19 front and 265/35R19 rear summer compound tires for RWD models, while AWD models have 235/40/19 all-season tires in the front and rear.
The GS F SPORT RWD offers an optional Lexus Dynamic Handling (LDH) system with Dynamic Rear Steering (DRS). This technology integrates DRS, Electric Power Steering; and for GS 350 only, Variable Gear Ratio Steering (VGRS). Monitoring vehicle speed, steering direction and driver inputs, the system calculates the optimum angle for all four wheels. Using VGRS in the front and DRS in the rear, the system can independently manage front and rear wheel steering angles to help enhance turn-in response, rear grip, vehicle control and cornering agility.
Standard Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM) anticipates loss of vehicle control and governs all of the vehicle’s dynamic handling systems — Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Brake Assist (BA), Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and Traction Control (TRAC) — with the electronic throttle control system. VDIM employs these systems collectively and seamlessly to help make corrections while allowing higher dynamic capability. The system also provides a limited-slip differential effect.

Safety/Security Features

The GS is standard-equipped with 10 airbags, including a knee airbag for both driver and front passenger, seat-mounted side airbags for outboard rear seats, and side curtain airbags.
Whiplash Injury Lessening front seats reduce the space between the occupant’s head and headrest to help limit excessive head movement, and help decrease the severity of whiplash-type injuries, in certain types of rear end collisions.

2016 Lexus GS High Resolution Exterior
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Standard entertainment and connectivity technology includes enhanced Bluetooth capability with automatic phonebook download and streaming audio.
Standard DVD video compatibility, MP3 sound enhancement, 5.1 simulated surround-sound from normal two channel sources such as MP3 files and CDs.
HD Radio with iTunes tagging and a three-month all-access trial subscription to SiriusXM Satellite Radio are standard.
With the available heated and ventilated front seats, the GS features the Climate Concierge. This system automatically monitors the temperature of three separate climate zones and adjusts not only the fans, but also the temperature of the seats and steering wheel individually. Each zone will achieve its pre-set level of comfort as quickly as possible.
The optional Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) helps detect vehicles in side blind spots and alert the driver to rear cross traffic when backing out of a parking space.

Luxury Options

The available 17-speaker Mark Levinson premium surround sound audio system has 7.1 channel surround-sound through 10 channels using a class D Digital amplifier with a clean 835-watts from 20-20,000 hz at only 0.01 percent total harmonic distortion. Clari-Fi technology analyzes compression in the signal of digital tracks (CD, iPod, etc.) and determines how much amplification is needed, and where, to correct it


48-month/50,000-mile basic limited warranty with roadside assistance for 48 months/unlimited miles.
72 months/70,000 miles powertrain and restraint system coverage.
72 months corrosion perforation protection coverage, regardless of mileage.
Eight years/100,000 miles hybrid-related components, including the HV battery, battery-control module, hybrid control module and inverter with converter.

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