By KBB.com Editors
Lexus continues to defend its territory as a purveyor of technologically-advanced luxury cars with the 2011 LS 460 and LS 460 L. The company's flagship sedan is the embodiment of the best in build quality, advanced features and craftsmanship - characteristics for which Lexus has come to be known. With the additional option of air-ride suspension, the 2011 LS 460 builds on an already-impressive level of comfort and sophistication.
While some luxury offerings, such as the Audi A8 and BMW 760i, tilt more toward the sport end of the luxury spectrum, the LS 460 and LS 460 L are built with your comfort in mind first. If you're looking for a slightly softer ride that still offers plenty of power, this is the car.
If precision handling and world-beating acceleration are on your must-have list, you may be better served with something from Germany or Britain. Additionally, the conservative styling may be too bland for some buyers.
Lexus has kept the revisions to the 2011 LS 460 and the LS 460 L fairly minimal. Buyers may now choose an optional an air-ride suspension in place of the standard coil springs. In addition, 19-inch forged alloy wheels are now available with the Sport Package.
Driving Impressions Both LS 460 variants possess 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 drivetrain also merits high operational marks for responsiveness and the confident feeling that there's always plenty in reserve for freeway passing or emergency maneuvers. Predictably, the suspension is far better suited to long-distance cruising than to attacking twisty back roads. The focus is on keeping things under control, thanks in part to the LS 460's well-sorted Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management system. Those seeking a more responsive drive should definitely consider the Sport Package, which not only returns a firmer ride but delivers better braking and handling.
Eight-speed Automatic Transmission
Both versions of the LS 460 are fitted with an excellent eight-speed automatic transmission. With a superb ratio spread, the transmission delivers both excellent performance and solid fuel economy. Shifts are nearly seamless and the logic behind the gear changes is perfectly intuitive.
Lexus has bestowed its banner sedans with a cabin that lands the vehicles in hot contention with some of the best cars in the segment. Excellent seats, high-quality materials and a host of technology features make the interior of the LS 460 a complete winner.
Buyers can expect to find the cabin of the LS 460 providing the same level of refinement and quality materials as its predecessors. Those include the judicious application of brushed aluminum and polished wood inlays along the dash and doors, while the vehicle's seats are clad in supple perforated leather. A comprehensive array of power assists, 10-speaker premium audio system with six-disc CD-changer, signature Optitron electroluminescent gauges, legible displays and intuitive control layouts make for a uniquely enjoyable driving experience. Rear passengers will find ample space, even in the short-wheelbase vehicle, though the additional 4.8 inches of the long-wheel base version deliver an added level of comfort. Buyers may also choose additional niceties, such as power reclining rear seats with a massage function.Exterior
The 2011 Lexus LS 460 won't quicken too many pulses with its design. The artists behind the vehicle's bodywork purposefully opted for a more conservative look compared to bolder designs like, for example, the Jaguar XJ. Nevertheless, the big Lexus carries itself confidently with the tried and true design elements of a luxury sedan, including a long hood and short trunk deck, and large wheels and chromed exhaust tips do much to add spice to an otherwise demure exterior.
The 2011 Lexus LS 460 boasts an extensive standard-equipment list that includes power front seats with 16-way driver and 12-way passenger adjustability, an integrated memory function, dual-zone climate control, power moonroof, keyless remote entry, eight airbags, a Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management system that includes traction and stability control, anti-lock disc brakes with Brake Assist and Electronic Controlled Braking functions and high-intensity discharge headlamps with a corner-following adaptive feature. The LS 460 L adds a host of items that are LS 460 extras, including power door closers, rear-view backup camera, one-touch power trunk open/close, climate-controlled front and heated rear seats and a power rear sunshade.
Buyers may option the LS 460 with a 450-watt/19-speaker Mark Levinson audio system, Pre-Collision System with Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Intuitive Park Assist and an Advanced Parking Guidance System. For the non-L versions, Comfort and Comfort Plus Packages include a host of luxury features. A Sport Package includes Brembo brakes, a sport-tuned air suspension and additional sporty items. The L version is available with a Luxury Package that includes semi-aniline leather with Alcantara headliner. The Rear-Seat Upgrade adds power rear seats with lumbar massage, four-zone automatic climate control, a rear-seat cool box and rear-seat side airbags. And a four-seat Executive Class Seating Package includes right-rear-seat power recliner with multifunction massager, rear-seat wood-trimmed table, DVD rear-seat entertainment with nine-inch screen, rear-seat audio controls and numerous other rear-seat luxury features.
The 2011 Lexus LS 460 family comes with a 4.6-liter V8 engine that delivers 380 horsepower and 367 pound-feet of torque in the rear-wheel drive configuration. All-wheel drive models boast a somewhat more modest 357 horsepower and 344 pound-feet of torque. Combined with a well-sorted eight-speed automatic transmission, either model can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in around six seconds. Thanks to electronically-controlled intake valves and hydraulically-manipulated exhaust valves, the LS 460 manages to meet ULEV II emissions standards and return 16 mpg city and 24 mpg highway in rear-wheel drive models and 16 mpg city and 23 mpg highway in the all-wheel-drive versions.
380 horsepower @ 6400 rpm
357 horsepower @ 6400 rpm (AWD)
367 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4100 rpm
344 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4100 rpm (AWD)
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/24 (RWD), 16/23 (AWD)
By Dick on Tuesday, November 25, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 53,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Just a great car well taken care of"
Cons: "Can's think of one."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I have owned BMW's and Benz's and other Lexuses but this one is hard to part with. My neighbor with the Tesla told me the toughest thing I will do in getting a Tesla is parting with my Lexus and he is correct!!"
1 person out of 2 found this review helpful
By Dav2149 on Thursday, November 06, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 141,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "the car will run on regular gas, 87"
Cons: "AM radio reception on Levinson audio is awful."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I purchased the car new from a Lexus dealership. I have 141,000 miles, and I have not had one single problem with it. Never in my new car vehicle history of cars have I ever had a car which has not had to go back to the dealer (other than regular maintenance). Comfortable with many amenities. Average gas mileage (although I use regular only gas - some people advise that mileage might be better with premium but I don't think the cost of premium offsets lower mileage). I don't like that the trunk release button is on the bottom of the dash. I hate it that the courtesy lights come on slowly when a door is opened (if it's a sub-freezing night and I left something in the car and have to go out to get it and open the door I have to wait seconds for the lights to completely come in - ridiculous)."
8 people out of 15 found this review helpful
By Jeff on Friday, September 19, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 55,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"Complaints need to be in the area of nick picks. The entry exit process is not the best for tall drivers, although this is better than most cars. Mileage is in the over all 20 mpg. Nice! For a big sedan, or as the Europians say, saloon, this is a great car. Maybe better suspension control and a bit more power but Avery nice on huge whole."
10 people out of 19 found this review helpful
By Steve on Monday, August 18, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 30,000overall rating 7 of 10rating details
Pros: "Great riding and driving auto."
Cons: "Image was best quality.. Image is not same for me."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5
"My original LS 400, 1994 lasted forever and I still don't know why I sold it.. My newer 2010 has had some serious issues.. very costly from front end suspension to rear shocks ($2000), for one shock.. Front suspension 2800. I highly recommend the extended warranty as this car is very expensive to fix.. period.. I've already gotten more value from the warranty repairs than it cost me. Big disappointment in the quality vs the older 'tank' quality models."
9 people out of 14 found this review helpful
By Red on Friday, August 15, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 59,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "fun and fast"
Cons: "Love the sun roof"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"Nice sleek line on this car. The extra feature of the perma plate has kept the hood and mirrors of the car protected. It is easy to drive and very comfortable with light tan interior, the heated and air conditioned seats plus back up cam are just great features. Rear air, mirrors in the back plus the movable seats make it fun to be in the back seat. The sun shades in the back window are so effective since we live in a hot area. The storage in the trunk with the open area into the back seat is great for ski's etc. Over this is an excellent model of Lexus."
2 people out of 2 found this review helpful
By Larry on Monday, July 07, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 96,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Great drive. So many great amenities."
Cons: "None...love my Lexus"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I've owned Cadillacs for 25 years. I bought my Lexus in 2007 and it is by far the best car I ever owned."
2 people out of 4 found this review helpful