• Fall 1984 – The "F1" project is well underway. "F1"
is Toyota's code for flagship luxury car of the highest order. Shoiji Jimbo
and Ichiro Suzuki head a large engineering team to develop this ultra-important
• May 1985 – Lexus conducts its first study of the American market
with a team headed by Jimbo attending focus groups and interviewing dealers
in major markets. A separate five-person team moves to Laguna Beach, Calif.
to study lifestyles and integrate design concepts suited for American customers.
• July 1985 – The first of 450 running prototypes is built, representing
the work of 60 designers, 24 engineering teams, 1,400 engineers, 2,300 technicians
and 220 support workers.
• May 1986 – Tests are conducted on the Autobahn in Germany.
• September 1986 – Ten months of extensive evaluation on American
roads begins, resulting in numerous improvements in line with the U.S. environment
and customer needs.
• May 1987 – The final design of the F1 is approved after eight previous
presentations to management – far more than customary.
• August 1988 – Roger Penske, the renowned racing team owner and
soon-to-be Lexus dealer, goes to Japan to test-drive the F1.
• November 1988 – The F1 is designated the LS 400, "LS"
meaning Luxury Sedan, and "400" for the 4.0-liter V8 engine.
• January 1989 – The LS 400 makes its American debut at the North
American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit and the Los Angeles Auto
• May 1989 – The first production LS 400 rolls off the assembly line
at Lexus' Tahara plant in Japan.
• September 1989 – The LS 400 goes on sale to the public and is very
well received. In the first month, 2,919 LS 400s are sold.
• December 1989 – Lexus initiates a special service campaign. Although
aware of only one consumer contact regarding a cruise control malfunction and
several complaints of stoplight housing distortion, Lexus elects to recall all
8,000 LS 400s sold to check items. Dealers contact owners individually and quickly
make repairs. Rather than being viewed negatively, Lexus is credited with setting
a new standard in personalized service.
• September 1992 – A "freshened" LS 400 debuts with more
than 50 changes, many as a direct response to dealer and customer requests.
• November 1994 – Completely redesigned second generation 1995 LS
400 goes on sale.
• March 1997 – Lexus and Coach, the renowned manufacturer of distinguished
leather products, announce the production of a distinctive limited edition LS
• September 1997 – Lexus introduces a redesigned LS 400 featuring
Variable Valve Timing with Intelligence (VVT-i) engine for higher performance,
dozens of additional features and freshened styling. Despite the numerous upgrades,
the LS price remains the same as the previous year, enhancing its overall value.
• January 2000 – Lexus unveils the 2001 LS 430 flagship sedan at
the NAIAS in Detroit.
• October 2000 – The LS 430, the third generation Lexus flagship
sedan, goes on sale. In addition to upgrading its V8 to 4.3 liters, the new
vehicle sets a new benchmark for luxury and technology. Features include Intuitive
Park Assist, Dynamic Laser Cruise Control, heated/cooled front seats and a beverage
cooler between the two rear seats. The 2001 LS 430 also offered a Mark Levinson
sound system, which made Lexus the first and only automaker to offer an OEM
mobile audio system designed by Levinson.
• September 2003 – The LS 430 debuts as a thoroughly revised model
for 2004, with exterior restyling, a new 6-speed automatic transmission, and
additional safety and luxury features. The three generations of Lexus LS sedans
have garnered more awards for quality than any other luxury car and have won
the J.D. Power and Associates Vehicle Dependability Study every year that they
have been eligible.
• January 2006 – The 2007 LS 460 is unveiled at the North American
International Auto Show in Detroit along with the LS 460 L, the first long-wheelbase
model for Lexus. The fourth-generation LS features a new-generation 4.6-liter
V8 with 380 horsepower and is equipped with world's first automatic eight-speed
transmission and a wide array of new luxury amenities and technology features.
• April 2006 – The 2008 LS 600h L is revealed at the New York International
Auto Show, introducing the world's first full hybrid V8 powertrain.
• October 2006 – Fourth generation Lexus LS 460 and all-new LS 460
L go on sale.
• July 2007 – All-new LS 600h L goes on sale.
• September 2007 – LS 460 models gain revisions to suspension option
packages for 2008.
AWARDS AND RECOGNITION
• January 1990 – The LS 400 finishes first in all categories, including
overall satisfaction, in Car & Driver's 1990 New Car Buyers study.
• February 1990 – Motoring Press Association names LS 400 "Best
Imported Car of the Year."
• March 1990 – The LS 400 is awarded the "Best Luxury Car"
title in MotorWeek's Drivers' Choice Awards.
• July 1990 – In J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality Study
(IQS), the LS 400 ranks fourth overall and second in its segment during its
first year of eligibility.
• May 1992 – LS 400 is named the most problem-free vehicle in J.D.
Power and Associates IQS.
• June 1992 – LS 400 tops J.D. Power and Associates Customer Satisfaction
Index (CSI), which gauges satisfaction after one year of ownership.
• December 1992 – Personal Finance lists the LS 400 as the best buy
in the $30,000+ category.
• March 1993 – American Automobile Association (AAA) names the LS
400 as the best 1993 model in its price range.
• March 1993 – Consumer Reports calls the LS 400 "Benchmark
• May 1993 – Lexus sweeps the J.D. Power and Associates IQS with
the LS 400 and SC 400/300 finishing first and second, respectively, with the
fewest reported problems. Lexus was once again the top nameplate in the study.
• June 1993 – Robb Report names LS 400 the "Best Import Car
• February 1994 – LS 400 is named "Best Overall Value of the
Year" in the over $40,000 luxury class by IntelliChoice.
• May 1994 – LS 400 tops the J.D. Power and Associates IQS again
with an astoundingly low 32 problems per 100 vehicles.
• December 1994 – The all-new LS 400 is designated "The Best
of What's New" by Popular Science.
• January 1995 – Lexus LS 400 receives Popular Mechanics' "1995
Design & Engineering Award."
• March 1995 – In J.D. Power and Associates Vehicle Dependability
Index (VDI), the LS 400 registers the fewest problems of all individual vehicles
in the last 12 months after five years of ownership.
• May 1995 – Strategic Vision, a consulting and research firm measuring
how consumers rate their cars in terms of least troublesome and most pleasurable
ownership experiences, finds the LS 400 to be the "Best of the Best"
in the import luxury car category.
• June 1996 – Toyota Motor Corporation's Tahara plant, which builds
the Lexus LS 400, captures the J.D. Power and Associates "Gold Plant Award"
among Asian manufacturing facilities.
• February 1997 – IntelliChoice names the LS 400 the "Best Overall
Value" in the Luxury Car class.
• April 1997 – The LS 400 sedan is ranked No.1 in the Luxury segment
of the J.D. Power and Associates IQS. The LS also records the highest score
among all cars and trucks in the study.
• June 1998 – The LS 400 again tops the Premium Luxury Car segment
in J.D. Power and Associates' IQS. The LS earns the best score of any vehicle
in the study, an honor it has achieved in five out of six years.
• September 1998 – LS 400 earns the title of Most Appealing Premium
Luxury Car in the J.D. Power and Associates APEAL Study.
• May 1999 – The LS 400 receives top honors in the revised J.D. Power
and Associates IQS.
• May 2000 – Once again the LS 400 comes out on top in J.D. Power
and Associates IQS.
• September 2000 – Lexus LS 430 receives the 2001 Design & Engineering
Award from Popular Mechanics.
• February 2001 – Automobile Magazine names the LS 430 an "All
Star" in the Best Luxury Sedan Over $40,000 category.
• April 2001 – Consumer Guide names LS 430 a "Best Buy."
• May 2001 – Yet another top ranking for the LS 430 in the J.D. Power
and Associates IQS with the fewest problems of any vehicle on the market.
• October 2001 – LS 430 is named "Most Appealing Premium Luxury
Sedan" in J.D. Power and Associates APEAL study.
• January 2002 – Edmunds.com names LS 430 "Editors' Most Wanted
Vehicles – Large Sedan Under $55,000."
• March 2002 – LS 430 named "Finest Luxury Sedan in America"
by Automotive Marketing Consultants Inc. (AMCI).
• April 2002 – LS 430 named "Top Performer in Premium Luxury"
car segment by the AutoPacific Vehicle Satisfaction Score (VSS).
• May 2002 – The LS 430 is the highest-ranked vehicle overall, as
well as first in its segment, for the sixth consecutive year in J.D. Power and
Associates IQS. Power also awarded the LS 430's manufacturing facility, the
Tahara Plant in Japan, the Worldwide Platinum Plant Award. For the fourth year
in a row, the Platinum Plant Award has been given to a Lexus factory.
• October 2002 – Edmunds.com names LS 430 "Consumers' Most Wanted
Vehicles – Large Sedan Under $55,000."
• November 2002 – LS 400 is the highest ranked vehicle in the Premium
Luxury Car segment in the J.D. Power and Associates Vehicle Dependability Index.
• January 2003 – LS 430 is named "2002 Prestige Luxury Car"
in R.L. Polk & Co. Automotive Awards.
• February 2003 – LS 430 awarded the Automotive Market Environmental
Superiority (AMES) award in the Premium and Luxury Car category. The AMES awards
were created to help encourage customers to purchase AMES awarded vehicles to
assist in the reduction of fuel consumption and emission of greenhouse gases.
• May 2003 – For the seventh consecutive year, the LS 430 ranked
first in the 2003 J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality Study (IQS). On
the manufacturing side, J. D. Power also awarded the LS 430's manufacturing
facility, the Tahara Plant in Japan, the worldwide Platinum Plant Award for
the second consecutive year.
• July 2003 – The LS 430 is the highest-ranked vehicle in the Most
Dependable Premium Luxury Vehicle category of the 2003 J.D. Power and Associates
Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS), for the ninth consecutive year.
• October 2003 – The LS 430 is the highest ranked vehicle in the
Premium Luxury Car segment of 2003 J.D. Power and Associates Automotive Performance
Execution And Layout (APEAL) study, and received the highest score of any model
surveyed. Since 2001, the LS 430 has been the highest-ranking model in APEAL.
• February 2004 – The LS 430 is named IntelliChoice's "Best
Overall Value" in the Luxury Car segment.
• May 2004 – AutoPacific announces the 2004 Vehicle Satisfaction
Awards (VSA). The LS 430 registered highest overall satisfaction for a fifth
• June 2004 –The LS 430 ranks first in the Premium Luxury Car category
of the J.D. Power and Associates 2004 Initial Quality Study.
• June 2004 –LS 430 had the second fewest problems of any vehicle
in the J.D. Power and Associates 2004 Initial Quality Study, behind the first
place SC 430
• December 2004 – The Lexus LS 430 is named a "Best Buy"
Premium Large Car by IntelliChoice.
• February 2005 – The Lexus LS 430 is awarded "Best Overall
Value" for cars over $23,000 by IntelliChoice.
• May 2005 – The Lexus LS 430 ranks second, after the SC 430, in the
Premium Luxury Car segment in the J.D. Power and Associates IQSSM.
• June 2006 – The Lexus LS 430 earns J.D. Power and Associates Initial
Quality (IQS) award in the Large premium Car segment
• August 2006 – The LS 430 is "Most Dependable Large Premium
Car" for the 12th consecutive year in the J.D. Power and Associates Vehicle
Dependability StudySM (VDS).
Awards and Accolades for 2007 LS 460/460 L
• Car of the Year Japan Award
• Popular Mechanics' Breakthrough Award – for APGS
• Popular Mechanics' Automotive Excellence Award in luxury category
• Edmunds.com's Editor's Most Wanted Award
• 2006 Roadfly Auto Show Award, Best New Production Model
• Cars.com Editor's Choice for Empty Nesters
• CNET Editors' Choice Award (Dec. '06)
• Road and Travel magazine, International Car of the Year (Jan. '07)
• Road and Travel magazine award: "Most Respected" (Jan. '07)
• Road and Travel magazine award: "Luxury Car" (Jan. '07)
• MotorWeek Driver's Choice "Best Luxury Sedan" award (Feb.
• 2007 World Car of the Year (April '07)
• Automotive Engineering International's Best Engineered Vehicle of 2007
• J.D. Power and Associates Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS) Large Premium
Car segment leader – top-performing model in the industry for the 13th