By on April 11, 2017

2018 Lexus LS 500 F SPORT Front 3/4, Image: Lexus

Back in the day, a properly large luxury sedan was just that — large and luxurious. No sporting pretensions were found, as any special package simply piled on the brougham.

However, Lexus has said no to a padded roof or opera lights for its newest full-size package, as it’s given the F Sport treatment to the new LS 500. Available for the twin-turbo V6 and V6 hybrid powertrains, the F Sport package adds a dash of sporting pretense to an otherwise posh sedan.

2018 Lexus LS 500 F SPORT Rear 3/4, Image: Lexus

As Lexus hinted last week, the 2018 Lexus LS F Sport adds unique styling cues and improved handling over the standard LS sedan, with a unique grille being the most noticeable outward change.

2018 Lexus LS 500 F SPORT Front Close-up, Image: Lexus

Newly sculpted rocker panels and trunk moldings highlight the dynamic styling, as do the unique 20-inch alloy wheels with staggered widths. Lexus further adds an F Sport-exclusive “Ultra White” paint hue if so desired.

2018 Lexus LS 500 F SPORT Dash, Image: Lexus

The interior follows with sporty accents throughout. The front seats have more supportive bolstering for negotiating the parking lot at the tennis club at speed, and are trimmed in Ultrasuede for a soft touch — as is the headliner.

2018 Lexus LS 500 F SPORT Front Seats, Image: Lexus

The throttle, brake and dead pedals are aluminum — because racecar — and the steering wheel is of a racier design than the standard model. Lexus also offers an optional Circuit Red interior on these F Sport models.

2018 Lexus LS 500 F SPORT Pedals, Image: Lexus

Drivers who opt for a rear-wheel drive LS F Sport rather than the optional all-wheel drive will see fair-weather benefits from high-performance summer tires fitted to the 20-inch wheels, and buyer’s can choose the optional F Sport Handling package that adds a sport-tuned air suspension, an active stabilizer, variable steering ratios, and active rear steering.

2018 Lexus LS 500 F SPORT Wheel, Image: Lexus

Both the 415 horsepower, twin-turbo V6 engine and the 354 hp, hybrid V6 engines carry over unchanged from the standard LS 500, as do the options of rear- or all-wheel drive. Lexus has not yet released pricing details.

2018 Lexus LS 500 F SPORT Rear Badging, Image: Lexus

[Images: Lexus]

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23 Comments on “NYIAS 2017: 2018 Lexus LS 500 F Sport Adds ‘Driving Emotion’ (But No Extra Power) To Buttoned-Down Big Sedan...”

  • avatar

    I want my luxury car to be uh… luxurious; a vehicle that ignores potholes and road imperfections. That’s nice to have, especially in Michigan, land of the eternal pothole.

    If I wanted sporting – and had that kind of money – than a BMW M3, please. Or heck, a Mustang GT.

    • 0 avatar

      Clearly there is a market for this kind of car – see BMW M760i, Alpina B7, AMG S63 and S65, Audi S8. Just a little extra sportiness while retaining the size and features of a large luxury sedan.

      The M3 and Mustang are great sports cars, but they can’t provide the same social status, features or cruising capabilities of a large luxury sedan.

      • 0 avatar

        I highly doubt people that are looking to purchase a Alpina B7, AMG S63, or S8 would ever cross shop this LS500 F. This car will be purchased by retired folk looking to impress their neighbors and golfing buddies. Or that new doctor looking to lease.

    • 0 avatar

      It’s an optipnal package so you can have your luxobarge as well. As a steady owner of sporty cars if I were to make the leap to something like this I’d go in for the F-sport option simply because I prefer a taught ride.

      I long thought companies should offer a sporty trim level across the board ( or where it makes sense ) . When Ford introduced the FoST and FiST I thought it would have been neat if they could have developed handling and braking upgrades under the ST banner for the Fusion, Taurus, EB Mustang and so on or perhaps take the SHO moniker and run with it.

    • 0 avatar

      I agree 100%. Sporting pretentions have become obligatory. Lexus even put F packages on its CUVs. Completely ridiculous and looks like a joke, as they’re not sporty in any way. Brougham them up and sales will explode. I’m waiting for auto makers of figure this out. Just a matter of time.

  • avatar

    Looks the emotion will come when this beached whale of car scrapes bottom when entering driveways worldwide. Lexus looks they are in the running for the lowered auto brand of the year award.

  • avatar

    This is entirely Akio’s fault.

  • avatar

    “driving emotion” – Every time I try to say that short phrase it comes out in William F. Buckley’s voice.

  • avatar

    I see why Caddy and Lexus have V and F ‘divisions’ in their brands, because AMG and M from Germans. But unlike the Germans, Toyota and GM already have wholly-owned and separate divisions to make supposedly ‘lesser’ cars etc. These guys are just dividing-conquering their own brand equity, and reinforcing perception (earned or not) their ‘normal’ premium vehicles are just tarted up everyday-mobiles. Audi more and more treads fine line on this as well.

    • 0 avatar

      The difference is that Cadillac has been able to sell out their annual allotment of the CTS-V, whereas the GS-F is languishing on the lots.

      If going to play in this “game” – have to “bring it” when it comes to HP/performance and Lexus has been bringing a knife to a gunfight.

  • avatar

    Lexus has F-Sport and “F” model cars. F-Sport is pretty much meaningless and F on cars like the GS-F, RC-F, is a super-expensive way to get the V8. F-Sport is bait and switch nonsense.

    • 0 avatar

      You’re getting a suspension upgrade with most F-sport models, I wouldn’t call better handling bait and switch nonsense. Besides, How is this any different than M-sport or S-line or the other car packages that get released to make more money?

  • avatar
    Corey Lewis


    -Less comfortable
    -No wood
    -Weird geometric wallpaper seats (will age poorly)
    -Even more ugly
    -Complex rear steering which will break
    -More costly than a regular one
    -Utterly ridiculous in mixed luxury-sports large sedan mission

    I freaking hate this.

    • 0 avatar

      The rear steering will be fine; it’s the air suspension you should watch out for.

      This isn’t much different from the F Sport (and, previously, Sport) package Lexus offered on the outgoing LS. Those were SWB cars with air suspension, a “sport” two-tone interior treatment, and some exterior decoration.

  • avatar

    One is accosted by that view through the driver’s door and one must ponder the astonishing idiot-savant nature of our astrophysicists who ceaselessly devise brilliant technology and techniques to scan the furthest celestial realms for black holes.

    One busts a gut.

  • avatar

    First off, the LS looks too much a Infiniti. Second, the big cars aren’t supposed to be sporty.

  • avatar

    That shot with the pedals, particularly the hood release lever is ghastly. That panel could be shared with a 1998 Corolla.

    • 0 avatar

      What does an appropriately upscale hood release lever look like?

      And why would anyone but a service tech need to abrade sensitive aesthetics by looking at it?

      • 0 avatar

        I don’t know. Im just used to driving very old cars and seeing that little lever with the ancient hieroglyphic shared on a $70,000 car is a little jarring. the 1990 LS400 looked better in this regard from the floor mat to plastic trim. The surrounding panel doesn’t even look padded in this car.

        • 0 avatar

          Maybe really swanky cars just have a discreet little lever tucked up under there that anyone with any business popping the hood already knows where to find.

  • avatar

    New LS rides on the same platform with LC. Read and watch the reviews.

    The F-Sport LS will handle better than any AMG or S/RS or M sedan. Panamera will be its closest rival.

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