The FREE Complete Bay Area Auto Enthusiast Guide

Right off the bat, let us point out that the Lexus flagship sedan is not for everyone. Ask why? Well, it has a base price of nearly $79,000, which with options is almost $104,000. Add tax, tag, delivery and destination and you are looking at around $120,000.

Now that price is settled for a few, but not for most, here is what you get. Under the hood of the 2019 LS500 resides a 3.5-liter twin-turbo engine with continuously variable valve timing that cranks out 416 horsepower @ 6000 rpm and 442 pounds-feet of torque @ 4800 rpm. The all-wheel-drive luxury car is mated to a smooth and quick-to-respond 10-speed auto gearbox. Among the modes available are eco, normal, sport S and sport S+. Torsion limited-slip center differential ensures that this exhilarating ride has a firm trip, traction and cornering stability at every turn.

Surrounding the massive spindle grille up front are triple-projector LED headlights, turn signals and daytime running lights. Step inside the lavish cabin and you will be in awe of fabulous leather and wood sprinkled throughout. The optional ultra-suede headliner reinforces the elegance. A mouse-like, easy-to-use Remote Touch enables the driver to toggle navigation, climate, audio and phone controls, which are displayed on a massive 12.3-inch screen. Other niceties are dual-zone auto a/c, analog clock, power tilt/telescoping steering column, 16-way power driver and front-passenger seats and heated/cooled rear seats. Among the options are a heads-up display, panorama glass roof, Mark Levinson sound system with 23 speakers, power side window shades, 18-way power recline rear seats, and an adaptive variable air suspension.

Standard safety features include dual front and side airbags, side curtain airbag, front knee airbags, vehicle stability and traction controls, front/rear crumple zones, four-wheel antilock brakes with electronic brake distribution and brake assist, blind spot monitor with rear cross traffic alert, daytime running lights and a tire pressure monitoring system. Add in a pre-collision system that detects pedestrians, lane departure alert/steering assist and dynamic cruise control, all part of the no-cost Lexus Safety System + 2.0.

Despite the 5,027-pound weight, 0 to 60 is possible in just 5.2 seconds with top speed at 136 mph. Truly, the LS500 is nothing short of a palace on wheels. Everyone aboard is treated to royalty in the beautifully-made and skillfully executed cabin. Dream about this powerful machine and if you can afford the steep price tag, it is yours.

Tires: 245/50R19
Wheelbase: 123 inches
Length: 206.1 inches
Suspension: high mount multilink double joint front, multilink rear
Steering: electronic power rack-and-pinion
Fuel capacity: 21.7 gallons
City: 18 mpg
Highway: 27 mpg
Base price: $78,420
Price as tested: $103,865
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CALLING ALL LEXUS DEALERS IN THE WEST CENTRAL AREA: if you would like to be listed here as one of the test-drive dealerships, e-mail us at