By KBB.com Editors
The 2009 Lexus LS 460 and its long-wheelbase LS 460 L variant represent new benchmarks in both technical sophistication and passenger pampering. The fourth generation of the flagship LS luxury sedan line embodies the kind of innovative features, impeccable build quality and attention to detail that have helped established Lexus as a preeminent power in the premium vehicle segment. In the case of the LS 460 L, additional rear-seat room and an even more compelling selection of standard and optional equipment put it squarely in contention with European prestige sedans, such as the Audi A8L, BMW 750 Li, Jaguar XJ8L and long-wheelbase-only Mercedes-Benz S550.You'll Like This Car If...
If you're looking for a world-class luxury sedan that bristles with technology and delivers a smooth, quiet, comfortable, safe and reliable ride, the 2009 Lexus LS 460 should be on your must-drive list. If you have a chauffeur or just want to further pamper your rear-seat passengers, you'll be better served by the even-more spacious and opulently-appointed LS 460 L.You May Not Like This Car If...
Should your tastes run towards a more aggressive sense of style and overtly sporty handling characteristics, any number of European competitors could well prove a more rewarding choice than either the LS 460 or LS 460 L.What's New for 2009
For 2009, Lexus adds an all-wheel-drive variant as well as standard passenger seat memory function.Driving It Driving Impressions
Both LS 460 variants embody all of the character traits you'd expect in a Lexus luxury sedan. Each excels in smooth, quiet and effortless cruising with little meaningful performance variation to differentiate between standard and stretched models. We noted an occasional bout of tire thump over rough pavement and slight wind whisper at freeway speeds, but overall cabin isolation is outstanding. The engine and transmission pairing also merits high operational marks for responsiveness and the confident feeling that there's always plenty in reserve for freeway passing or emergency maneuvers. While the suspension is far better suited to long-distance cruising than to attacking twisty back roads, it, too, places a premium on keeping things under control, ably assisted by the LS 460's well-sorted Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management system.Favorite Features
Eight-speed Automatic Transmission
Fully integrated with the engine's computer controls, this transmission features an exceptionally wide ratio spread that enhances mileage and performance. It delivers quick, seamless upshifts and downshifts both in full automatic mode and when using the manual sport shift feature.
All LS 460s pamper their passengers with superbly supportive and exceptionally adjustable front buckets, plus a roomy, comfortable rear bench. Among the numerous upgrades offered are full climate controls for the front seats, heat and power-recline features for the rear and the four-place LS 460 L-only Executive Class variation that brings a leg rest and built-in back massager.