NEW FOR 2015:

– GS 350 RWD discontinued
– Navigation is now standard
– Trim and equipment level changes

Well, that was short lived. A year after introducing a new eight-speed automatic transmission for rear-drive GS 350 models, Lexus dropped the rear-drive GS 350 from its product line (the 450h hybrid remains rear-wheel drive). This was not a surprise, though; most of its rivals offer all-wheel drive as standard equipment, and so the mid-range Lexus sports sedan follows the pack. Unfortunately, it means the RWD F Sport with its rear-wheel steering, special VGRS adaptive steering, and staggered-width performance tires is no more.

The GS 350 AWD comes with a 3.5-litre port- and direct-injected V6 engine that develops 306 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque and is paired to a six-speed automatic transmission. The GS 450h pairs a 3.5-litre V6 with an electric battery pack and motor to deliver greater performance and improved fuel economy.

All GS 350s have an extensive standard equipment list that now includes navigation and Siri eyes-free voice control. Also standard are heated and cooled 10-way power leather seats, a 12-speaker sound system, smart key with push-button start, power sunroof, 18-inch alloy wheels, and xenon headlamps with LED running lights. Bluetooth and USB ports are standard.

There are four upgrade packages on offer to GS 350 AWD buyers.

The Luxury Package includes 18-way power seats, heated rear seats, power-retractable sun shades, and parking sensors with cross-traffic alert.

The Executive Package adds radar cruise control, a 17-speaker Mark Levinson sound system, head-up display, power folding mirrors, and a monitoring system which uses eye-tracking technology to alert the driver should he or she become drowsy.

The F Sport Series 1 adds 19-inch wheels, front and rear sport damping, and F Sport-specific exterior and interior accents, plus 16-way sport power seats with adjustable side bolsters.

The F Sport Series 2 builds on Series 1 with the technology goodies from the Executive Package.

The GS 450h comes in one fully loaded trim with all the features of the GS 350 AWD Executive Package as standard.

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