Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Frankfurt Show: 2010 Lexus LS600h gets Mild Tweaks and More Compact Battery Pack

Making their world premiere in Frankfurt alongside the rest of the revised 2010 model year Lexus LS range, the LS600h hybrid and its long-wheelbase sibling receive a gentle facelift with mild cosmetic tweaks that differentiate them from the petrol models, updated equipment, a new ECO driving mode, more powerful brakes and a repackaging of the battery pack. The 2010 LS600h and LS600h L are distinguished visually mainly by a new four-bar grille and front bumper with redesigned air intakes and foglamps.

Other details include the new one-piece rocker moulding and new door mirrors with chrome highlights that now incorporate twin LED turn signals and puddle lamps, while the range of exterior colours has been increased.

In the cabin the instrument panel has been redesigned and now includes a new full color, TFT LCD display and the upper air vents have been set apart from the instrumentation on the centre console. Furthermore, there's a new navigation system and the EMV multi-display touch screen has large switches and rearranged layout for the audio controls while both front seats are equipped with new, inflator operated active headrests.

Changes to the hybrid system include the introduction of a new ECO mode, which modifies the throttle action and performance of the air conditioning system to support fuel-efficient driving, and the repackaging of the battery pack into two sections of six and 14 modules that has reduced its overall size and freed up more luggage space in the boot.

Lexus says that the Hybrid Drive system has also been revised to meet Euro V exhaust emissions standards, but with no change to the car's performance with the 5.0-litre V8 petrol engine and 165kW electric motor producing a combined output of 439bhp and 520Nm of torque, giving a 0-100km/h (62mph) acceleration in 6.3 seconds. CO2 emissions are 219g/km and combined cycle fuel economy remains at 9.2lt/100km (25.3mpg US or 30.4mpg UK).

Finally, the Japanese firm's flagship hybrid has been fitted with with larger, 380mm ventilated front disc brakes with six-piston callipers, rotors and pads jointly developed with Brembo.

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