The 2017 Lexus GS F Sedan is the quickest GS you can buy. This sedan isn’t the GS with a random sports package and some exterior badging, it’s a true performance car from Lexus. They have infused a new attitude into the GS F.
When Toyota boss Akio Toyoda said he wanted to give the timid Lexus brand some performance attitude a few years ago, he wasn’t kidding. The 2017 Lexus GS F is a good example of what he wanted the brand to develop into. The GS F ramps Lexus up to its highest performance level yet.
The GS F borrowed performance parts from the RC F coupe and they fit just fine. The sedan gets the high-performance V8 from its RC F stablemate, along with revised braking and suspension. In short, it’s the most powerful sedan Lexus has ever made. The Lexus GS F competes in a tough segment too, with the BMW M5, Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG, Cadillac CTS-V, and Audi RS 7.
The Lexus GS F gets continuously variable dampers for 2017.
Features & Options
The 2017 Lexus GS F Sedan ($83,940) comes loaded with standard features like 10-way power-adjustable seats, automatic wipers, forged 19-inch wheels, leather trimmed sport seats, keyless entry and ignition, and Lexus Enform Remote, a smartphone app that includes a vehicle finder, remote unlocking and starting, and climate control operation. Other features include a power tilt-and-telescope steering wheel, a backup camera, heads-up display, a 12-speaker audio system, and navigation.
Underneath, the GS F gets an electronically controlled differential, Brembo high-performance brakes, upgraded sport suspension, a 5.0-liter V8, torque vectoring technology, and an 8-speed transmission.
The only optional features on this GS F tester were the premium Mark Levinson audio system ($1,380) and special 19-inch wheels ($600). Total MSRP including destination: $87,490.
Stepping inside the GS F reveals special features not offered in the standard trims. The GS F model gets aluminum pedals, carbon fiber trim, and sport seats we think offer up exceptional comfort and support. The additional Alcantara leather throughout the cabin gives it a sportier feel than other Lexus products, especially around the dash. The dash is characterized by its horizontal lines and cool ambient lighting at the perimeter. Yet, it offers the typical Lexus luxury we think beats even the best German sport sedans. There are extra padded leather panels in rich shades, smooth wood trim, and the fit and finish overall is top-notch.
Another area the GS F goes against the typical Lexus luxury grain is by piping engine and exhaust notes into the cabin. The 5.0-liter V8 powerplant gives out a throaty growl unlike any other model produced by Toyota’s luxury brand. We found ourselves jumping hard on the gas just to hear that sweet sounding engine.
The 10-way power seats, which we put to the test this week, are comfortable, supportive, and have more bolstering for hard cornering. The color heads-up display helped keep our eyes on the road and it was a good thing as we pushed the GS F hard this week. The giant, 12.3-inch high-resolution display sits ready for commands from the Remote Touch “joystick” on the console. In the back, there’s good head room for taller passengers but knee room is lacking. Although the rear doors are big, making it easy for adults to climb in and out.
Engine & Fuel Mileage Specs
The Lexus GS F is the quickest sedan the brand has ever built because it uses a 5.0-liter V8 sourced from the RC F high-performance coupe. The engine has 467 horsepower and 389 lb-ft. of torque. It’s backed by an 8-speed Sport Direct-Shift automatic transmission with steering wheel paddle shifters. With both direct and port injection, this V8 gets an EPA-estimated 16/24 city/highway and 19 combined mpg.
This is attainable only if you can keep your foot out of it. Good luck with that.
It’s hard to drive the GS F in a casual manner. The first time we stomped on the naturally aspirated 5.0-liter V8 and heard the engine and exhaust notes, we wanted to have that thrill over and over again. It’s heard like sweet background music through two speakers, one front, one rear, as it is piped in. Lexus says the GS F will sprint to 60 in just 4.5 seconds. You know it’s quick when you look down and you’re going 92 mph before you even get on the highway!
On the road, when weren’t seeing how it handled the corners (where the torque vectoring makes the sedan respond beautifully), the GS F is a comfortable cruiser. The 8-speed automatic transmission is crisp, smooth, and responsive, although it can’t match the German competition’s dual-clutch gearboxes. The big 19-inch staggered wheels gripped the pavement and the Brembo performance brakes (15-inch front and 13.5-inch rear) are needed with all those horses under the hood. The ride is smooth enough, considering the GS F gets a sport tuned suspension with stiffer shocks and springs.
The Lexus GS F offers a rear-drive sedan that’s pushing the limits for the Japanese automaker. It has the character of a true performance car with the luxury you would expect from the Lexus brand. The GS F is the quickest GS you can buy, and our experience says Akio Toyoda is succeeding in infusing a new attitude into the luxury brand.
Denis Flierl has invested over 25 years in the automotive industry in a variety of roles. Follow his work on Twitter: @CarReviewGuy