You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

2019 Lexus GS: What You Need to Know

US News & World Report - Cars logo US News & World Report - Cars 1/16/2019 U.S. News & World Report
a silver car: 2019 Lexus GS© Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. 2019 Lexus GS

The 2019 Lexus GS pampers travelers with supple seats, sophisticated styling, and a smooth ride. Its engine lineup is lively, though its handling isn't as athletic as some rivals. The GS places in the middle of our luxury midsize car rankings, partly because of an irritating infotainment system.

The 2019 Lexus GS is ranked:

Is the Lexus GS a Good Car?

The Lexus GS is a very nice luxury midsize car. This well-rounded sedan is comfortable, treating occupants to a posh, quiet ride. It’s also sporty and fun to drive. For added spice, shop for an uplevel trim outfitted with a more robust engine. Adding the F Sport package will give you more aggressive handling. The predicted reliability rating for the 2019 model is still pending, but it's worth noting that this sedan has a fantastic history of reliability. Its infotainment system, however, may be a deal breaker for buyers who find its finicky controller to be frustrating and overly distracting while driving.

Should I Buy the Lexus GS?

The GS presents a great value in the luxury midsize car segment. It offers an appealing selection of trims: from a plush, well-appointed sedan for cruising to a performance-oriented sports sedan for a thrilling drive. The GS has some tough competition, though, and it’s not the only sedan with this blend of qualities. The Genesis G80, for example, serves up a premium experience, and can also save you around $5,000. Some alternatives, such as the Mercedes-Benz E-Class and BMW 5 Series, carry a higher price tag, but some shoppers will agree that these high ranking cars are worth it.

Should I Buy a New or Used Lexus GS?

With no groundbreaking updates for 2019, there aren't any compelling reasons to buy a new GS. Lexus launched the current generation in 2013 and refreshed the exterior in 2016. That same year, the base GS 200t (which later became the GS 300) joined the lineup, along with the high-performance GS F.

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2017 and 2018 GS reviews to help make your decision. Also check out our Used Car Deals page to learn about savings and discounts you can find on used cars.

We Did the Research for You: 36 Reviews Analyzed

Our 2019 Lexus GS review includes far more than just one person's opinion. We collected professional evaluations from more than 36 sources and combined them with concrete data like fuel economy estimates, safety features, and performance specs to help you make an informed buying decision.

This 2019 Lexus GS review incorporates applicable research for all model years in this generation, which spans the 2013 through 2019 model years.

Why You Can Trust Us

The Best Cars team – a division of U.S. News & World Report – has been reviewing cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007. With more than 75 years of combined automotive experience, our editors, writers, and analysts rank a wide variety of new and used cars and issue three annual awards: Best Cars for the Money, Best Cars for Families, and Best Vehicle Brands. To keep our recommendations unbiased, we decline expensive gifts from carmakers, and a third party handles our advertising.

How Much Does the Lexus GS Cost?

The 2019 Lexus GS starts at just above $46,600, which is an average retail price among base models in our luxury midsize car rankings. The F Sport’s MSRP starts at $51,200, and prices for the GS F start at $84,350.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Lexus dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Lexus deals page.

Lexus GS Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Lexus GS or Mercedes-Benz E-Class?

The Mercedes-Benz E-Class is an excellent luxury midsize sedan. It's sophisticated, smooth, and athletic. The interior boasts top-flight materials, cutting-edge technology, and cushy seats. Similar to the GS, the E-Class comes with an impressive set of standard safety features. The GS does offer a significant advantage: It costs about $7,000 less than an E-Class. Since both are good cars, we recommend going with the one that best fits your budget.

Which Is Better: Lexus GS or Audi A6?

In many ways, the Audi A6 and Lexus GS are equals. Of the two, the Lexus historically has enjoyed better predicted reliability scores. The Audi, on the other hand, has the better infotainment system. In addition to its user-friendly interface, the A6's system is available with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. You won't go wrong with either the A6 or the GS.   

GS Interior

How Many People Does the GS Seat?

The GS is a five-seat sedan. Even Goldilocks will be able to find just the right seating position, thanks to the 10-way power-adjustable front seats. Both seating areas are comfortable, spacious, and airy. Synthetic leather upholstery (dubbed NuLux) is standard, and Lexus offers indulgences such as genuine leather, heated and ventilated front seats, and a power rear sunshade. 

GS and Car Seats

The Lexus has three sets of tether anchors and two sets of lower anchors for installing car seats.

GS Interior Quality

The GS boasts top-notch materials and first-class styling, and Lexus' attention to detail is evident throughout the cabin. You can boost the opulence with upgrades such as perforated leather trim, Naguri aluminum accents, and open-pore walnut inlays.

GS Cargo Space

The GS is an excellent car to take on lengthy road trips or to your local Costco. Its 18.4-cubic-foot trunk is one of the largest in the class, providing enough room for several large suitcases. The rear seats feature a pass-through for long items, but they do not fold down. The trunk in the GS F is smaller, at 14 cubic feet.

GS Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

From its surround-sound audio system to its lengthy list of advanced safety features, the GS is undoubtedly a well-equipped luxury sedan. It's a shame, however, that its infotainment system is so frustrating to use. Steering the Remote Touch interface is a mouse-like controller that requires an excessive amount of attention from the driver. It’s especially difficult to operate when driving. An upgraded system with a 12.3-inch display, navigation, smartphone integration, and Amazon Alexa integration is available, but it uses the same type of controller.

GS Performance

GS Engine: 3 Excellent Engine Choices

This sedan's three available engines give shoppers the ability to select just the right blend of performance and price to fit their lifestyle. The base turbocharged four-cylinder engine is optimal for those who enjoy comfortable cruising. It will get you up to highway speeds quickly, and it has a reasonable fuel economy rating. For an extra $4,000 or so, you can upgrade to the GS 350, which comes with a muscular V6 engine. The high-performance GS F represents the zenith for this lineup, and its 467-horsepower V8 engine can go from zero to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds. Its $84,000-plus price tag is a hard pill for many to swallow, though. A responsive eight-speed automatic transmission is standard, and a six-speed automatic comes in all-wheel-drive GS 350 models.

GS Gas Mileage: In Line With Class Averages

The GS 300 has an EPA-estimated fuel economy rating of 22 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the highway. These are typical gas mileage estimates for a luxury midsize car. The GS 350 gets 20/28 mpg city/highway, and the GS F gets 16/24 mpg city/highway.

GS Ride and Handling: Comfortable, Agile Cruiser

Whether you are touring the countryside on a Sunday drive, or kicking up dust on a twisty mountain pass, the GS is a good companion. Its ride is comfortable and agile, walking that fine line without getting overly floaty or overly firm. You can dial up the excitement by getting the optional F Sport package, which includes a sport-tuned suspension system. Rear-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is available in the GS 350.

GS Reliability

Is the Lexus GS Reliable?

The 2019 GS belongs to a generation that typically earns a high predicted reliability rating from J.D. Power.  

Lexus GS Warranty

The 2019 Lexus GS comes with a four-year/50,000-mile basic warranty and a six-year/70,000-mile powertrain warranty.

GS Safety

GS Crash Test Results

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gives the GS a top score of Good in all three crash test evaluations that were conducted. The IIHS also notes that the GS provides a Basic level of front crash prevention, thanks to the car's standard pre-collision system.

GS Safety Features

Every GS comes with Lexus Safety System+, which contains a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, automatic high beams, lane departure warning with steering assist, and lane keep assist. A rearview camera is also standard, and GS 300 and GS 350 models come with blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert. Optional safety features include parking sensors, a head-up display, and rain-sensing windshield wipers.

Which Lexus GS Model Is Right for Me?

Deciding between the GS trim levels comes down to how much power you want. Each model has a different engine, starting with the 241-horsepower four-cylinder engine in the GS 300. Ratings go up from there, with the V6-powered GS 350 cranking out 311 horsepower, and the V8-powered GS F producing 467 horsepower. The GS 350 is also the only trim level with optional all-wheel drive. Interior features differ to a smaller degree between editions. A couple of standouts are an upgraded infotainment system in the GS 350 and GS F, and leather seats in the GS F.

There's a lot to love about the base trim level. It comes with a peppy turbocharged engine, a well-equipped infotainment system, and several advanced safety features. For these attributes, we recommend the GS 300 as the best value of the bunch.

If you yearn for added performance components, but can't afford the $84,000 GS F, there is another option: Lexus offers its F Sport package in both the GS 300 and GS 350. Highlights include an adaptive variable suspension system, sport front seats, 19-inch split spoke alloy wheels, and a Sport+ mode. Package pricing ranges from about $1,400 to $4,600, depending on the trim level.

Lexus GS

Standard features in the GS 300, which starts at $46,610, include a four-cylinder engine, synthetic leather upholstery, 10-way power-adjustable front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, and a moonroof. The infotainment system comes with an 8-inch display, a 12-speaker surround-sound audio system, a DVD player, HD Radio, and satellite radio. This entry-level model also comes with an extensive number of advanced safety features. A pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, and rear cross traffic alert are among the standard driver assistance features.

Lexus GS 350

The star feature of the GS 350 is its meaty six-cylinder engine. A handful of interior amenities are also added, such as the 12.3-inche display, a navigation system, and smartphone integration via the Lexus Enform App Suite. Prices start at $50,665 for the all-wheel-drive GS 350 and $50,995 for the rear-wheel-drive version.

Lexus GS F

Prices start at $84,350 for the V8-powered GS F. Leather upholstery, heated front seats, and navigation come standard. For 2019, Lexus is also offering a GS F 10th Anniversary Special Edition for $89,350.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Lexus dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Lexus deals page.

The Final Call

The Lexus GS is a great option if you desire the performance of an Audi A6 and the elegance of a Mercedes-Benz E-Class, but want to save thousands of dollars on your purchase. One thing does sully this otherwise superb sedan: the mouse-like controller for the infotainment system. Before you buy a GS, make sure that you first spend some time getting comfortable with its operation.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

Read the full 2019 Lexus GS review on U.S. News & World Report for more details, photos, specs and prices.


More from U.S. News & World Report

US News & World Report - Cars
US News & World Report - Cars

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon