This has been coming for awhile as the last time Lexus introduced a new GS model was back in 2011/12, almost 10 years ago now. Word is that Lexus will be replacing the GS with a Toyota-based luxury sedan, the new RWD Toyota Mirai, but not before a swansong model to sign off Akio Toyoda’s idea of a driver’s Lexus.
Now that it’s confirmed that production will end in August 2020 once the final GS is out in June, Lexus Japan is sending off the fourth generation GS with a special edition model aptly named the Eternal Touring. The Eternal Touring can be had as a GS450h, GS350, GS300h and GS300 F SPORT in the country.
Changes on the Eternal Touring models are only limited to aesthetics with items from Lexus’ F Sport inventory. These include the spindle grille, side mirror covers, spoiler, 19-inch wheels and orange brake calipers while on the inside, the Eternal Touring models will come with an F Sport steering wheel with paddle shifters and gear knob, F Sport seats, a carbon trim that stretches across the dashboard and Alcantara upholstery on the door trims, arm rest, centre console and instrument cluster panel.
According to reports, the end of the GS is largely attributed to the drop in sales and the uprising of SUVs especially in the US, where sales were down by almost 50% in 2018. Last year, they reportedly sold just over 6,000 units in the US; compared to over 30,000 units more than 15 years ago.
Unlike in Japan, the final GS will be sold as a Black Line Edition based on the all-wheel or rear-wheel drive GS350 F Sport in the US. Powered by a 3.5-litre V6 engine, it will be limited to only 200 units. In terms of specifications, it’s identical with its Japanese counterpart save for the exterior colours. The US models will come in either Caviar or Ultra White.
Also unlike its Japanese equivalent, each unit from the Black Line Edition will come with a two-piece luggage from the Zero Halliburton “Edge Lightweight Collection”.
In Malaysia, Lexus only sells the ES and LS. It’s worth nothing however that the ES is front-wheel driven. RIP, yet another rear-wheel driven vehicle.