Lexus India has fired its first salvo for the year 2021. The Japanese brand which has had a rather quiet 2020 is now starting to show signs of life. The flagship Lexus LS500h now has a new variant – Nishijin. The Nishijin variant gets a new paint scheme – “Gin-ei Luster” – an extraordinary silver paint scheme that brings in the lustre without trying too hard. A new front bumper too has been added and it brings out the sportiness of the form. Handcrafted upholstery too has been added to the equation. Lexus has finally added a touch panel to the LS500h and this 12.3-inch display has got “the ability to control the display screen and audio functions by using an iPhone and Android™ smartphone”. The steering as well as central console too have been raised to give better visibility. This is now common to even the standard model.
The Lexus LS500h Nishijin variant is priced at Rs 2.22 crore, ex-showroom. This makes it costlier than the standard version by Rs 30.77 lakh. There is no change to this CBU car’s powertrain. It continues to draw power from a 3,400cc, V6 petrol engine that makes 292hp of power and 350Nm. This engine is mated to an electric motor, making the car a hybrid. The electric motor produces 178hp and 300Nm. The claimed 0-100kmph time is 5.4 seconds.
However, this Lexus isn’t about outright power and it is more about fast cruising. The LS500h defines opulent luxury and showers its occupants with a sense of being wrapped in warmth. At the same time, the V6 engine is very efficient as the electric powertrain overtakes duties at low speeds thereby saving petrol. There are multiple airbags in the cabin and the car has crashworthiness to go along with as well.
Competition to the Lexus is in the form of the Mercedes-Benz S-Class, BMW 7 Series and Porsche Panamera.
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