Hey guys, just got back from my Taste of Lexus even here in Cincinnati Ohio. The event was at Kings Island, and I must say it was very well organized. The building was heated very well (it was low 30's this morning) and the furnishings reflected the elegant luxury of Lexus. Food was good and the people were very cheerful and pleasant. I thought it was going to be a really good experience but maybe my expectations were a little high. The biggest disappointment was the fact that there was no IS-F present.
The closest we got was a giant banner....I tried to cajole the nice lady into letting me um... take it... no luck. Anyway, no IS-F.
The LS600H was stunning, the interior is beautiful, LED headlights are striking, the massaging seats were nice after yesterday's tackle football, the car is utterly silent, and the drive reminds me of a cloud of mist hovering over the ground.
The track was sufficient, with plenty of twists and turns, from hairpins to lane change maneuvers. The straight was quite small, I only managed to get up to 50, but it was loads of fun to push the car.The IS350 with sport suspension was by far the best car there from a driving perspective. And I think the local police were irked by the site of our lawful speeding and aggressive driving.
The LS600H wins for smoothest/quietest ride, and the SC430 was... uninspiring. The GS350 was surprisingly quick and fun to drive, despite its porky stature. Much less body roll than expected.
To no ones surprise, my friend and I were the only guests in their 20's and possibly even under the age of 35. Most were in the 35-55 age bracket, and aside from a few bored children, I was the youngest there at 21, which didn't bode so well on the 'driving course.' I saw cones and a closed course so I assumed it was acceptable to push the cars. Unfortunately it was by no means an AutoX so I was kindly warned to take it easy or I would be asked to leave *lame*.
Due to the weather, there were very few guests at the event. I could usually get out of a vehicle, switch places and go for a second run. At one point there was only one other guy in line....
On a plus note, one of the course attendants was an instructor at Skip Barber so we got to waste quite a bit of time talking cars with a fellow enthusiast. And he said he was very impressed with the IS350.
Overall, it was well done, but just didn't really appeal to some one my age. The golf game and Lexus 'lifestyle' exhibits were a little too gimmicky and irrelevant for my tastes, but I guess it was more targeted to the 'average' Lexus consumer. I had a good time at the event, but I had much higher expectations, primarily IS-F
Just sharing my experience, Cheers.