Daily Driver meets Sports Coupe
Car aficionados always say that they want one car for the winter and one car for the summer. While at first glance this may sound simple enough, what they really mean is something a bit different altogether. What car guys really want is a capable and impressive daily-driver, and a head-turning, noise-making, tire-burning sports car that can be unleashed when the weather is nice and the streets are dry.
The Lexus GS450h and the Nissan 370Z fall nicely into these two categories. The GS450 is a luxurious and smooth sedan, capable of meeting and surpassing all of your daily commuting needs, while the 370Z is a fast and furious sports coupe that calls out for attention.
Long known as an industry leader when it comes to comfort and luxury, Lexus has again found a niche market in the GS450h. Combining the best of the Lexus GS sedan with a seamlessly integrated hybrid engine, Lexus drivers will come to appreciate the finer details when driving this fully equipped luxury vehicle – and they’ll be doing their part for the environment.
The GS450h is equipped with a 3.5-L, V-6 engine, and when combined with its electric motor is capable of producing a whopping 339-horsepower. Unlike some other hybrid vehicles on the market today, the GS450h has plenty of power and gets this heavy vehicle off the line in no time at all. Lexus estimates a 0 to 100 kilometres an hour time of under 5.5 seconds. While a very quick vehicle, much of your stop-and-go commute will likely be powered by the GS450h’s silent and smooth electric motor. This contributes to a fuel mileage estimate that is very impressive – 8.7-L, 100 km/h in the city, and 7.8 L/100km on the highway. The GS450h provides a winning combination of power, performance and fuel economy that is unmatched by any other vehicle.
As any owner will tell you, the Lexus brand prides itself on providing a smooth and silent ride, while pampering its occupants with sumptuously rich appointments and gadgets. The GS450h holds true to this adage. Standard features include a push-button starter, automatic dual climate control, 18-inch alloy rims, a premium audio system with in-dash CD changer, 10-way power adjustable front heated seats, wood trim, a moon-roof and HID headlamps. An Ultra Premium package is available that adds a DVD and navigation system, along with rear sensors and back-up camera.
Replacing its 350Z predecessor, the 2009 370Z is the newest sports coupe offered by Nissan. With its performance-tuned suspension and aggressive styling, the 370Z is built to drive quickly and attract its fair share of attention!
The 3.7-L, 332-hp, V-6 engine of the 2009 Nissan 370Z is very fast – pulling down an awe-inspiring 0 – 100 km/h in 4.7 seconds. For those who love driving manual muscle cars, the 370Z’s 6-speed gearbox is equipped with a SynchroRev Match system that makes match-rev downshifts a breeze. By automatically adding a blip to the throttle, the 370Z roars through downshifts without jerking around the occupants inside. This is a very nice feature to have for those of us who are not as smooth as we’d like to be!
Inside the cabin, the 370Z is very sporty, and is equipped with a tight-ratio gearbox that is a pleasure to operate. The sport bucket seats are low to the ground, and envelop the body nicely through quick turns. Steering is tight and precise, even at high speeds. The 370Z has an excellent sound system, and options are available to upgrade to a navigation system.
Overall, the 370Z is another worthy sports coupe in a long line of Nissan performance vehicles.