Lexus is delighted to introduce European enthusiasts to the newly updated LS flagship saloon. The 2021 Lexus LS is equipped with new technologies, equipment and design features, and is scheduled to arrive in UK showrooms later this year.
“In developing the new LS,” revealed Lexus International president Koji Sato, “we aimed for further evolution of the exceptional quietness and comfort that have been a constant feature of the LS since its first generation, and the starting point of the Lexus brand.”
Technical revisions strengthen the contribution of the lithium-ion hybrid battery to further increase the supreme refinement and effortless power of the Lexus LS 500h. As a result of these changes, less input is required from the petrol engine and acceleration is more linear. Only slight pressure on the throttle is needed to make smooth, powerful progress, whether on city streets or navigating winding, uphill routes in the countryside.
2021 Lexus LS: ride comfort
In order to achieve improved ride comfort, Lexus engineers re-examined tyre performance, the suspension system and anti-roll bars, even the construction of the seats.
With regard to the tyres, the stiffness of the sidewall was reduced without compromising its run-flat capability. Meanwhile, a new linear solenoid and freer-flowing control valve were installed in the Adaptive Variable Suspension system to expand the range and performance of the shock absorbers. In contrast, increasing the rigidity of the anti-roll bars has reduced load transfer for improved cornering posture and line tracing that is more faithful to the driver’s intentions.
The one component that has the most direct contribution to human comfort is the seat. With that in mind, Lexus specified new urethane seat padding, plus an additional top layer of cushion padding and more defined bolster elements to reduce the transference of vibrations and improve body-holding.
2021 Lexus LS: fully automated parking
Taking all the effort out of parking is the fully automated Advanced Park system, which makes its world debut in the 2021 Lexus LS. It is the first system of its kind with a memory function to recognise spaces the driver uses regularly, in order to make the parking process easier and quicker. The technology controls the steering, throttle, brakes and transmission to execute safe and accurate manoeuvres, while a live panoramic image is projected on the central display to keep the driver informed of the vehicle’s progress and surroundings.
Safety and driver assistance technologies
New technologies provide a higher level of safety and driver assistance. The 2021 Lexus LS follows the RX in adopting BladeScan Adaptive High-beam System to provide headlight illumination over a wider area than standard LED systems.
It also introduces a new rear-view mirror, which can be switched from traditional optical glass reflection to a real-time digital feed from the rear parking camera for a view that is not impeded by headrests or passengers. In digital mode, the image can be adjusted for brightness and angle.
Further upgrades include a pedestrian detection function for the 360-degree Panoramic View Monitor and additional motor assistance to tighten the seatbelts when the Pre-Collision System delivers emergency braking ahead of an imminent impact.
New multimedia system
The latest generation multimedia system is now fitted to the 2021 Lexus LS, benefiting from increased functionality and more intuitive operation. Functions now include smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
The system is controlled via a new 12.3-inch touchscreen, centrally mounted and gently angled to make it easy to reach yet low enough not to intersect the driver’s view through the windscreen. Touchscreen functions include a new call-up switch to give instant access to frequently used controls, while the auxiliary switches on the steering wheel have been re-contoured and feature a unified black finish.
2021 Lexus LS: exterior design
Lexus engineers focused on details that subtly emphasise the strength of the overall design. The front bumper has been reshaped, the spindle grille now has a dark metallic finish to its inner surfaces, and the headlights have been revised to a slim, triple projector unit with daytime running lights arranged into a separate ‘L’ motif.
The lower side grilles have been squared-off and moved outwards to emphasise the car’s width, a feature that is amplified on the F Sport model where the grilles now wrap around the corner of the bumper. F Sport also features low-gloss black grille mesh, metallic black wheels and piano black moulding around the rear lenses. New black and machined finish 20-inch alloy wheels are available on the Takumi grade.
2021 Lexus LS: advanced paint finish
New paint technology has helped create Lunar Silver, a finish that throws the contours of the body into sharp relief with contrasting brilliant highlights and deep shadowing. Sonic waves are used to condense the paint into a layer that is just one micron thick, which forces the aluminium particles to pack themselves together more densely and with greater uniformity for a flawless finish.
Hand-crafted interior detailing
Lexus design delivers many contemporary interpretations of traditional Japanese arts and crafts. For the new LS, two time-honoured skills have been combined to produce striking new interior detailing.
The Nishijin and Haku option for the door panels weaves together black and silver in an organic pattern inspired by waves shimmering in moonlight. The craft of nishijin uses metal foil stretched on washi paper that is then cut into thin strips and woven together. This is matched to a door handle surround inspired by haku, a heritage craft that involves the application of thin metallic foil.
A further new trim option uses natural ash wood dyed black to bring out the strong pattern of the grain. This creates a sharp contrast with the silver metal layer beneath, which is revealed by a highly skilled laser-cutting process.