The next sedan in Lexus family is the future 2017 Lexus LS Hybrid. The LS is Lexus’ flagship sedan which has been on the market ever since the company was born. While it has not been their best seller, the car certainly managed to get quite a few people interested in it, so it became a good source of income for them. More recently though, the new LS started to lose quite a bit of sales to its main competitors and this is mainly because the current model has been launched back in 2006, meaning it currently is their oldest model out there.
In order to change that and give people an alternative for the S Class and 7 Series, Lexus is going to release an all new model which will finally be based on an entirely new chassis.
What’s new for 2017?
While it may seem a bit odd, the car will share its chassis with the new Lexus LC500 which has been called by them “the car with the strongest chassis they ever did”. This means that the new LS will not only offer better NVH levels than the ongoing generation but its top of the line model, the 2017 Lexus LS Hybrid, could now shave more than 300 pounds of weight which would mean that the car will be better to drive, more efficient and slightly faster as well.
Redesign – Interior & Exterior
In terms of design, the upcoming 2017 Lexus LS Hybrid is still well under wraps but a close sibling of it has been spied in Japan and it seems that the car will get a slightly longer wheelbase for the base model while the hybrid will be nearly identical to the one before it. The exterior size of the car will also be kept pretty much on the same levels with the current model but the car is likely going to be slightly lower and wider in order to offer more room inside the cabin without ruining the aerodynamic characteristics of the body.
Also, the cabin of the car will not only receive a lot of new features such as Lexus’ latest infotainment and navigation unit, but the materials will be improved considerably, so this time around the LS will be available with quilted leather, wood, aluminum or even carbon fiber inserts as well as it will give its customers the chance to choose their own design as an optional extra.
Under the Hood
Engine wise, the 2017 Lexus LS Hybrid is very likely going to receive a heavily updated version of the current model’s drivetrain. This means that it will still be a mild-hybrid with a rather small battery pack and electric motors used to help the larger petrol engine do its job. However, instead of the old and rather inefficient V8, the new LS Hybrid is expected to use a smaller 3.5 liter twin-turbocharged V6 petrol engine that will develop, all by itself, around 400 horsepower and 390 lb-ft of torque. This will be combined with two electric motors, one on the front axle and one inside the gearbox which will power the rear wheels via an upgraded CVT gearbox.
This means that the LS will continue to offer all wheel drive as standard while allowing the car to drive on electricity alone for a short amount of time. Also, the old NiMH battery is very likely going to be replaced with a slightly higher capacity and physically smaller 3 kWh lithium-ion pack which should improve the all electric range and allow the car to store more energy through its regenerative brakes.
2017 Lexus LS Hybrid Price
The price is still unknown but considering the fact the new model will be using mostly an aluminum chassis with a lot of high strength steel components, expect the base price of $130,000 to not change all that much. But, more details we could expect in summer of this year.
The biggest competitors are Audi A7 Sportback H-Tron Quattro Concept and Mercedes-Benz S550 Plug-in Hybrid.