Yep. That there is a luxury sports sedan, it goes fast and looks like a hell of a ride. That's according to Mark Templin, Lexus marketing vice president - and he stood up on the world's biggest stage and told everyone in clear voice just that. "The GS 450h will immediately establish a new criteria for the capabilities and image of hybrid technology," said Templin, "while redefining what a high-performance luxury sedan is all about." In essence, Templin was confirming that hybrids are here to stay - and that luxury car buyers are the ones who will want this new powertrain system first. They want it because it does EVERYTHING better, from fuel efficiency to performance, and, well, driving a hybrid - a Lexus hybrid - is just plain cool and getting cooler.
Templin would of course agree to that, and according to recent rumors, certain Germans known for building cars are - ach - once again looking at this hybrid thing. Here's hoping that they don't build one that's hard to use and understand like iDrive.
Lexus GS 450h
The 2006 Mercedes-Benz R-Class will surely perform in the way that every luxury crossover is intended: make rich people feel comfortable on their way to the store, work, or the country club.
Photos by Erik Hanson