|December 15, 2004
With the new year coming around the corner, many invited guests got a special preview of the new 2006 GS300 AWD & RX400h at Southern Californiaï¿½s newest state of the art facility & showroom at the new Lexus of Glendale. As guests entered, they were treated to a night of champagne & hors d'oeuvres, accompanied with a live band to kick off the new facility as well as showcasing the new Lexus models for 2006.
Guests gathered around and looked in awe as the new 2006 GS300 AWD in Glacier Frost graced the showroom. The all new GS will feature an all new direct injection, dual VVT-i 3.0L V6 as well as a powerful 4.3L VVT-I V8, with a 6 speed sequential sport shift transmission. The GS300 will offer an all new All Wheel Drive model as well as the standard RWD setup. The 2006 GS will also feature a new Push Start ignition which operates electronically without a key. Also available, which were once exclusive features to the flagship LS430 include dynamic Laser Cruise Control system, Pre Collision System, Smart Access, all new DVD Navigation System featuring Bluetooth technology and a backup rearview camera. The new GS will arrive in Lexus showrooms March 2005.
The worldï¿½s first luxury hybrid vehicle, the 2006 RX400h in Savannah Metallic was also on the floor. The new RX400h will be the first gas and electric luxury vehicle in its segment. The RX400h will feature the familiar 3.3L 3MZ-FE VVT-i from the RX330, accompanied with Toyotaï¿½s Hybrid Synergy Drive system to power the front wheels. The RX400h is expected to have gas mileage above 30mpg and accelerate faster than the gas powered RX330. The RX400h is scheduled to be sold in April 2005. Guests were also treated to see on display, the Lexus Concept Sports Car which was featured in Steven Spielbergï¿½s film, ï¿½Minority Reportï¿½.
A handful of ClubLexus members and our friends from IS300.net were given a special preview of the next generation IS. The next IS will feature two new models, IS250 powered by a 2.5L Direct Injection, Dual VVT-i V6 which will be offered in a standard RWD and an all new AWD configuration. The IS350 will be the powerhouse which is scheduled to offer 300+ HP from the 3.5L Direct Injection Dual VVT-I V6 that is scheduled to have a 6 speed manual transmission variant. A sport wagon & hardtop convertible is expected to join the IS sedan in the line up. The exterior of the next IS will share styling cues with its larger sibling, the GS.
As the night came to a close, many of us got a chance to hear the new 06 GS300 AWD started via the new PUSH START ignition right before it departed the building. As soon as the engine came to life, the nice tone of the dual exhausts captured everyoneï¿½s attention, the new electroluminescent gauges lit up the dash, and the backup camera display lit up as the driver backed the car out of its parking spot. Within a 5 minute period, the RX400h, the Lexus Sports Car Concept and the new GS300 AWD had quickly made its escape to the Toyota Performance Sports Truck parked in the back, ready to take the rare prototype vehicles back to Lexus headquarters in nearby Torrance. Special Thanks goes out to Amy Liming and staff for the hospitality and invitation to their new facility.
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