The LS has served as the flagship of Lexus fleet since Toyota Motor Corp. first launched the luxury brand back in 1989 to challenge German luxury brands such as BMW and Mercedes-Benz. The next generation model, the LS 500h, will come with advanced driver assistance features for 2022.
The 2022 LS 500h luxury hybrid keeps evolving, the new model is the first vehicle in the U.S. line-up to offer the new Lexus Teammate advanced driver assistance technology on all-wheel drive models. This upgrade in performance and safety comes as the brand’s flagship maintains its tradition of quiet cabins, comfort, refinement and innovation, Lexus officials said.
“We are very proud of Lexus Teammate, which is the culmination of five years of close collaboration between our technical centers in Japan and the U.S.,” said Derek Caveney, executive engineer at Toyota Motor North America’s Integrated Vehicle System.
“We conducted simultaneous development and rigorous testing in both markets with the goal of achieving industry-leading advanced driver assistance functionality.”
Technology and comfort align
Caveney noted that Lexus Teammate is built on the belief that people and vehicles can collaborate to achieve safe, convenient and efficient mobility. It’s a step beyond the company’s existing technology.
Lexus Teammate on the LS 500h with AWD offers two functions, Advanced Drive and Advanced Park, he said.
Advanced Drive is more than adaptive cruise control. If integrates a variety of factors or data, such as current driving conditions, as it navigates traffic. This information helps it to determine when it should brake or accelerate.
It uses the data to remain in its lane, change lanes as well as deal with interchanges and traffic jams. It can also pass slower vehicles. Advanced Drive is essentially Level 2 autonomy for driving on limited-access highways with partial hands-free, eyes-on-the-road operation.
This feature also can aid the driver by reducing fatigue over long periods of driving and enabling the driver to pay better attention to the surroundings for greater safety, Lexus officials said.
If it can drive on its own (sort of and now without supervision, of course), the LS 500h should be able park itself too — and it can. The Advanced Park function allows hands-free safe and secure parking by automatically controlling steering, acceleration, braking, and gear changes when parallel parking or backing into a parking space.
The system uses 360-degree sensing, which integrates the functions of complete-circumference cameras and ultrasonic sensors. It also provides a bird’s-eye view display to allow the driver to check the vehicle’s position relative to any obstacles during Advanced Park operation, officials said.
The 2022 LS 500h AWD with Lexus Teammate and LS 500 are expected to arrive in dealerships this fall. No pricing information was revealed; however, the 2021 model year LS 500 starts at $76,000 while the LS 500h kicks off at $90,500.