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This is a hybrid with enviable performance capabilities. If one didn’t notice the fascinating gauge that demonstrates how the vehicle is operating between its gas engine and two-motor hybrid system, many people wouldn’t even know the Lexus GS 450h is fueled by multiple sources.

Step lightly on the accelerator and the 450h responds immediately. Tramp down on it and be ready for a power surge from this classy midsize luxury sedan. The 450h gobbles up the pavement in rapid style, going from 0-60 mph in 5.6 seconds, a time that is impressive for any vehicle, much less a hybrid.

Powered by a 3.5-liter, V6 engine, the rear-wheel drive 450h puts out 338 horsepower and 277 pounds-feet of torque. The driver can choose his method of traveling, thanks to a conveniently located Drive Mode selector that offers Eco, Sport S, Sport S+ and EV modes.

The 450h is a hybrid, so naturally gas mileage is a major consideration. The numbers run pretty high for a V6 engine with this type of acceleration and are a big improvement from the previous incarnation of the 450h, which took a year off when no 2012 model was produced.

2013 Lexus GS 450h

  • Performance: 3.5-liter, V6, 338 horsepower
  • Mileage estimate: 29-34 mpg
  • Price: $58,950
  • Warranty: 4 years/50,000 miles; drivetrain 6 years/70,000 miles; corrosion 6 years/unlimited; roadside assistance 4 years/unlimited

Lexus says the redesigned 2013 GS 450h gets an average of 31 mpg, while the 2011 edition got 23 mpg. That’s a nice job in increasing productivity, which now ranges from 29-34 mpg.

Other changes in the 2013 model are more eye-appealing. If you like the grille of the Lexus CT hatchback and the LX sport utility vehicle, then there will be no problem with the copy-cat 450h. Gone are the quad headlights, while the twin tailpipes send the exhaust through the vehicle’s bumper-integrated openings.

The 450h remains the same in wheelbase and length, although the chassis is 2 inches wider. The trunk space is increased, correcting another problem with the previous model.

Variety does not exist with the 450h, which is offered in just one model and goes for $58,950. The 450h costs about $12,000 more than the similar GS 350, another new redesigned Lexus sedan with no hybrid capability.

As with any Lexus, the standard features in the 450h are plentiful and safety is at a premium. The inclusion of the Lexus Safety Connect system (emergency assist button, automatic collision notification, stolen vehicle location service) is tough to match for any rival.

A revised interior is finely crafted (leather and rich wood) and provides considerable comfort for both front and back seat passengers. The 450h features plenty of gadgetry for techie types who love trying to master the various components. However, not everyone will be a fan of the joystick controller that can be frustrating to accurately control.

The 450h is a luxury sedan and doesn’t disappoint with its driving capability. The steering is very responsive and the vehicle corners well and will hug the road when necessary. The 450h also delivers a tranquil, quiet ride. 

There are many reasons to consider buying the Lexus GS 450h. It possesses classic good looks, great performance, a sporty ride, high gas mileage, and is reasonably priced for a luxury sedan.