2008 Lexus GS 350 Review

Pros & Cons

  • Powerful V6 engine, refined suspension, quiet and luxurious cabin, superb fit and finish.
  • Minor ergonomic shortcomings, brake modulation could be smoother, taller folks may find headroom lacking.
List Price Range
$7,000 - $11,770

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Competing in the hotly contested luxury performance sedan segment, the 2008 Lexus GS 350 offers exceptional value and remains a top choice for those seeking refined manners at a reasonable price.

Vehicle overview

The original Lexus GS was aimed squarely at the luxury sport sedans from Germany, with the goal of fielding a legitimate contender in the premium midsize sedan class. While the six-cylinder version was a stylish and well-crafted alternative for many years, its luxury bias and underpowered engine didn't pose much of a threat to more enthusiastic rivals. Until recently, that is.

After receiving a nearly 60-horsepower boost last year, the more competitive 2008 Lexus GS 350 boasts more than 300 hp and is now able to keep up with its rivals in the fast lane. High-speed slaloms are still another matter, however, as the GS 350 remains a luxury sedan to the core and still lacks true sport sedan reflexes. Think of it as an exceptional, beautifully finished highway cruiser that now offers straight-line speed and elegance in equal measure. This year, the GS 350 remains mostly unchanged. Outside there's a new grille, restyled front fascia, sideview mirror turn signals and updated wheels. Inside the GS sports revised gauges, handsome new aluminum center stack trim and other minor updates.

As good as the Lexus GS 350 is, the competition in the midsize luxury segment is fierce and getting stronger every year. For true sport sedan aficionados, there's BMW's updated and more powerful 5 Series. More evenly sharing both luxury and performance attributes are the Audi A6, Acura RL, Mercedes-Benz E-Class and an updated version of the very impressive Infiniti M35. Even Cadillac is in the thick of it on the domestic side with a competent and equally powerful direct-injected STS V6. In this class it's mostly a matter of personal preference, and in our opinion the 2008 Lexus GS 350 remains an excellent choice that you certainly won't regret.

2008 Lexus GS 350 models

In true Lexus fashion, the 2008 GS 350 midsize luxury sedan is outfitted in a single fully equipped trim level but does offer a choice of rear- or all-wheel-drive variants. It comes equipped with a long list of standard amenities that include 17-inch alloy wheels, xenon headlights, a sunroof, leather seating, automatic dual-zone climate control, 10-way power front seats and a 10-speaker premium audio system with six-CD changer, auxiliary audio jack and a cassette player. Factory options include rear park assist, adaptive headlights, rain-sensing wipers, ventilated front seats, 18-inch wheels with summer tires, adaptive variable suspension dampers, and a phenomenal 14-speaker Mark Levinson DVD-audio sound system with navigation and a rear back-up camera.

2008 Highlights

Like other GS models, the 2008 Lexus GS 350 receives minor exterior styling updates, turn signals integrated in the side mirrors, interior trim refinements and restyled gauges.

Performance & mpg

Pop the GS 350's hood and you'll find a 3.5-liter V6 engine producing 303 hp and 274 pound-feet of torque. Its power is controlled by a six-speed automatic transmission with a manual shift mode. Both rear-wheel- and all-wheel-drive GS 350 models are offered. The GS 350 is both quick and relatively efficient, with 0-60-mph times under 6 seconds and an EPA-estimated mileage rating of 19 mpg city and 27 mpg highway for rear-drive vehicles.

Safety

Standard safety equipment includes antilock brakes with brake assist, stability control, traction control, front seat-mounted side airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags and full-length side curtain airbags. Safety options on the 2008 Lexus GS 350 include adaptive front lighting, run-flat tires and Lexus' Pre-Collision System with adaptive cruise control. This technology uses a radar sensor to detect objects in front of the car, plus a computer that tracks vehicle speed, yaw rate and steering angle. If the computer determines that a collision is imminent, it immediately activates the seatbelt pre-tensioners and engages brake assist when the brake pedal is depressed. In Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crash testing, the Lexus GS received a top-ranked "Good" rating for both frontal-offset and side-impact collisions.

Driving

The 2008 Lexus GS 350 offers a satisfying driving experience owing to its ample power, silky-smooth ride and commendable handling. The V6 engine is well suited for both daily commutes and spirited driving, and the cabin remains calm and quiet at all times. While we wouldn't elevate the GS 350 to true sport sedan status, its rigid chassis and double-wishbone suspension combine to provide confidence-inspiring stability and responsiveness when cornering. One minor weakness involves the brakes, which some drivers find non-progressive and a bit touchy at first. This unusual pedal feel is quickly taken in stride, however, and the braking system otherwise stops the GS 350 quickly. The all-wheel-drive model is an obvious and excellent choice for those who require maximum traction in winter driving conditions.

Interior

In keeping with Lexus tradition, the GS 350 sports a luxurious and well-crafted cabin. Though spacious enough for five passengers, it accommodates four more comfortably as the elevated rear center cushion makes for a tighter fit in the middle position. Taller occupants may also find themselves a little too close to the roof. Genuine wood and aluminum trim complements the rich leather seating surfaces, and it's all put together with flawless fit and finish. The optional navigation system features high-resolution touchscreen graphics that makes it easy to operate at a glance; however, the integrated audio system can be frustrating to use at times. Also, the highly polished wood can reflect glare annoyingly at times, and the control-oriented drop-down dash panel to the left of the steering wheel can get in the way of the driver's exit if left open.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2008 Lexus GS 350.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

Eight years of pleasure.
Jack Zacks,04/04/2018
4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 6A)
I owned my 2008 Lexus GS350 for eight wonderful years of driving. There were no repairs other than tires, brakes and normal maintenance. This was my second GS and by far the best car I have owned in 50 years of driving.
Great car - it will surprise you
FreddyK,09/06/2010
Bought this car in October 2009. Mileage is better than expected. 5 road trips with my worst mileage 26.8 best 28.2. Just put new Michelin Pilots on last week to replace the Dunlop Sport tires. Night and day difference.
Fast and Beautiful
Philip,03/04/2009
I previously owned an 06 and the 08 takes care of the few things that the 06 lacked, such as the horse power! This car runs great, accelerates quickly and can stop on a dime. I have never had a better car. I love the nav and the music systems--they are the best. Definitely the best car for the money!!
Great Car!
Ken,03/26/2008
This is my second lexus moving up from the ES. I test drove the Audi and while it was definitely more sporty, I ultimately came back to the GS. The interior is roomy and packed with features. The GS does not have the tight suspension the A6 has, but it corners well, and has great pickup. As with my previous lexus, the build quality is excellent, and the car is just a blast to drive.

Features & Specs

See all Used 2008 Lexus GS 350 features & specs

Safety

IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Good
  • Roof Strength Test
    Acceptable
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Marginal
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Good

More about the 2008 Lexus GS 350

Used 2008 Lexus GS 350 Overview

The Used 2008 Lexus GS 350 is offered in the following submodels: GS 350 Sedan. Available styles include 4dr Sedan AWD (3.5L 6cyl 6A), and 4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 6A).

What's a good price on a Used 2008 Lexus GS 350?

Price comparisons for Used 2008 Lexus GS 350 trim styles:

  • The Used 2008 Lexus GS 350 Base is priced between $7,000 and$11,770 with odometer readings between 95635 and95635 miles.

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Which used 2008 Lexus GS 350s are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2008 Lexus GS 350 for sale near. There are currently 2 used and CPO 2008 GS 350s listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $7,000 and mileage as low as 95635 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2008 Lexus GS 350.

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Find a used Lexus GS 350 for sale - 5 great deals out of 5 listings starting at $11,849.

Find a used Lexus for sale - 3 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $20,045.

Find a used certified pre-owned Lexus GS 350 for sale - 2 great deals out of 18 listings starting at $9,496.

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Should I lease or buy a 2008 Lexus GS 350?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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Check out Lexus GS 350 lease specials