This car has been superseded by a newer model, click here to go to the latest Lexus GS Saloon (12-18) review.

Parkers overall rating: 3.5 out of 5 3.5

Front visibility is good, although thick rear pillars and the sloping shape towards the bootlid restricts the rear view. The dashboard is well laid out with most of the controls - such as the air con, audio controls and sat-nav accessed through a touch-sensitive screen on the centre of the dashboard. It's Lexus' simpler answer to BMW's i-Drive and Audi's MMI systems, but much easier for the first-time user to master.

Underneath the steering wheel, by the driver's right knee, is a flip-down tray containing all the buttons that would otherwise clutter the dash and confuse the driver (see gallery for an image). It's here that the controls for the least used gadgets are found, like the rear sun blind, petrol flap release and mirror adjustment.

The seats in the GS are soft and give good support while leather upholstery is standard on all but the base model. In the back it's comfortable for two over long distances although the heated, ventilated and electrically adjusted front seats do eat up rear foot space and the large transmission tunnel means there's no legroom in the middle seat. Music fans will appreciate the high quality stereo, which gives outstanding sound reproduction - on SE-L models it's uprated to a top-spec Mark Levinson branded system.

At higher speeds, the superb sound insulation means very little noise penetrates through to the cabin while thanks to its electric-only power at low speeds, the GS450h which is utterly silent when stationary or gently cruising.