The 2018 Lexus LS: “Finally Better Than a Mercedes?”

The 2018 Lexus LS was a redesign of the well-loved Lexus luxury sedan. Lexus often lets generations live a long time before the introduction of a new one. Lexus models are also know for offering a little competition to some of the German luxury automakers such as BMW, Audi, and Mercedes.

A Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class on display at an auto show
A Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class | Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images

It’s actually still a great used luxury car, which is why it feels relevant to go over these reviews from when it was new. Was the 2018 release of the Lexus LS better than its Mercedes S-Class competitor? That’s a tough call. But it does offer the Lexus tradition in reliability––although not devoid of issues–– and some very unique and coddling Japanese hospitality features.

Lexus omotenashi

Lexus goes above and beyond to the finest ergonomic detail in order to provide driver and passenger comfort. The Japanese word for this hyper-focused version of customer service is “omotenashi.” The mindset behind this is to give the driver and passengers a feeling of being taken care of while they experience the 2018 Lexus LS.

Lexus LS luxury sedan stunning interior
The modern cockpit of the Lexus LS luxury sedan | Lexus

“Omotenashi” is a Japanese word which represents the act of providing detailed service in a variety of ways to allow guests to spend a relaxing and memorable time by putting customers first… To Japanese, “omotenashi” means not just hospitality in the usual sense, but “something more akin to an elevated politeness that makes customers feel valued and respected.”


Lexus LS redesign

So, what does this mean for the 2018 Lexus LS redesign? From the hands-free tail gate opener to the personalized climate “concierge” that uses infrared technology to keep its passengers comfortable, the Lexus LS is like a tiny full service hotel on wheels. Minus the room service, of course.

The Lexus LS500h on display during the second press day of the Geneva Motor Show
The Lexus LS500h | Gerlach Delissen – Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images

In 2018 we see a new more avant garde grille style for the Lexus LS. Additionally, an integrated infotainment makes the cabin come together in a nice, sleek package. According to the video, the Japanese love that goes into the design of this car is “essentially a combination of art and OCD.” We have to say we agree. The stitching is so upscale and the seats literally move around to accommodate.

Is the Lexus LS fast?

According to US News and World Report, the Lexus LS is a good used luxury car. It comes with either a Hybrid system or the base level twin-turbo V6. Rear-wheel drive is standard. All-wheel drive is available. The Hybrid system paired two batteries with the existing V6 for increased efficiency.

A Lexus LS 500h hybrid automobile is competition for the Mercedes-Benz S-Class in the luxury car segment
A Lexus LS 500h hybrid automobile | Luke Macgregor/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The 10 speed transmission is said to be just a tad whiny at times, but overall the 2018 redesigned Lexus LS is a great car. The predicted reliability rating, however, is just about the only place that the Lexus overcomes the Mercedes S-Class. Especially in terms of performance. The Mercedes-Benz competition offers a much wider range of options.

Is the Mercedes S-Class faster?

The 2018 Mercedes-Benz S-Class review

There are different drive modes, which include a sport mode for the 2018 Lexus LS. But it’s not really enough to compete with the likes of Mercedes AMG performance. So, while the Lexus LS is not slow, it isn’t on the same level with some of the sportier Mercedes luxury car options. US News, however, still says that the choice mostly comes down to preference as they are both great luxury vehicle choices.

2018 Mercedes-Benz S-Class luxury car in motion on a city street
2018 Mercedes-Benz S560 Sedan

Is the 2018 Lexus LS a good used car?

Lexus RC 300h coupe on display at Brussels Expo
The 2020 Lexus RC 300h | Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images

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US News posts an average 2018 Lexus LS used car price of $52,732 – $57,110. That’s over $20,000 less than buying a new 2020 Lexus LS for $75,450 – $100,865. So, if you really love the Lexus LS it may be well worth checking out the 2018 model for the price break it offers for this modern luxury car.