Lexus GS250 Luxury, Review
Rising Sons

Story and photos by Raymond Lai
14 Aug 2012
 

The entry-level Infiniti saloon faces its toughest challenge yet from the new base model Lexus GS. Raymond Lai decides which is the more convincing entry-level Japanese executive saloon.

Introduction, styling

After many years of being the only luxury Japanese brand here in Singapore, Lexus finally has a competitor in the form of Infiniti when the latter finally officially entered the luxury segment here earlier this year. While Infiniti is a relative newcomer to the competitive Singapore car market, the luxury division of Nissan was founded roughly the same time as Lexus in its core market of America. It was only in recent years that Infiniti started pushing for sales in overseas markets like Europe and Asia.

In the executive saloon class, both Infiniti and Lexus offer 5 Series and E-Class rivals in the form of the M saloon and the GS respectively. The latter recently entered its fourth incarnation while the M is one of the few models being offered by Infiniti here, making them natural competitors and the only Japanese alternatives to the BMW, Mercedes and Audi posse. Just how does the Infiniti M in base M25 form fare against its Lexus equivalent, the new GS250 then? Let’s find out.

Outwardly, the Infiniti M saloon is hardly the sportiest looking or pretty for that matter. Infiniti says that the M’s styling takes inspiration from the superb looking Essence coupe concept but it’ll look just like any conservative looking large three-box saloon to most people. The only hints of the Essence are the wave inspired lines along the sides of the M as well as the curves on the front wings and bonnet.

Lexus’ fourth generation GS on the other hand, looks more resolved from most angles, especially at the front, where he brand’s distinctive ‘hour glass’ or ‘spindle’ grille gives it a distinctive face. Overall, the latest GS features tauter and crisper lines and angular forms for a more assertive and even sportier look. Admittedly, there’s a bit of the IS along the flanks and the rear but when viewed from the rear three-quarters, the GS’s styling can look a bit heavy and awkward.

At 4850mm in length, the GS is significantly shorter than the 4945mm Infiniti, with the latter also taller and wider. Next to the more athletic looking Lexus, the big M looks heavy, clumsy and lacks dynamism in its stance. Just like the M35h, the M25 features 18-inch alloys that fail to convincingly fill those massive wheel arches. The M37 Sports Premium model’s 19-inch wheels do fill those massive wheel arches better and hence, give it a better stance then the M25 here. In Luxury trim, the GS is fitted with 18-inch wheels that do a better job of filling its more moderately sized wheel arches.

Both the M25 and GS250 can be marked out from the M35h and GS350 respectively via their boot lid badges, with all other exterior styling details similar to the latter, higher end models’.


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Engine

Engine Capacity 2500cc
Engine Type V 6
Compression Ratio 12.0:1:1
Bore x Stroke (83.0 x 77.0)mm
Power 209bhp @ 6rpm
Torque 253Nm @ 4800rpm
Power to Weight 127.4 bhp per ton

Performance

Acceleration 8.6s (0-100 km/h)
Top Speed 225 km/h
Fuel Consumption (combined) 11.2 km/L

Misc Technical Data

Transmission 6 -speed Auto
Drive Type FR

Measurements

Body Type Sedan
Dimension
(L x W x H)
(4850 x 1840 x 1455) mm
Wheelbase 2850 mm
Turning Circle 5.3 metres
Kerb Weight 1640 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity 66 L

Brakes

Brakes (Front) Discs
Brakes (Rear) Discs