The only thing worse than going to a trade convention in Las Vegas is the indignity of flying a commercial airline to get there. The litany of horrors includes airport parking, TSA groping, an eternal wait for takeoff, the emergency spiel, a choppy flight, the shuttle to Rent-a-Wreck, getting lost on the way to the hotel…and the dread of enduring the same fiasco to return home.
A trip from Los Angeles to Las Vegas by automobile is an experience infinitely to be preferred. Especially if one has a luxury sedan made for the long haul, like the 2013 Lexus LS 460 F Sport. That we were going to the annual Consumer Electronics Show was a coincidence not lost on us, as our luxury-packed Lexus was equipped with the optional Mark Levinson Reference surround-sound audio system designed precisely for the Lexus LS line. Interior capacity, forms, and surfaces have all been factored into the design and specification of the system, which features 19 speakers and 450 watts of power in a 7.1-channel architecture. While the best car audio systems can’t compare to six-figure home-entertainment rigs (like the Mark Levinson/JBL Everest 67000 two-channel system featured at the convention by Harman Luxury Audio), they can deliver some pretty impressive sounds to enhance an already great driving experience. Just think of the Lexus LS F Sport as your private concert hall, with a car thrown into the bargain.
With a sticker price starting at about $82,000, the LS F Sport is playing in the premium luxury segment, and while its 386 hp, 4.6-liter V-8 is up to the task of “get up and go,” brute power is clearly not the car’s primary reason for being—that, instead, is comfort and functionality served up in a luxurious package. As the sport model of Lexus’s flagship luxury sedan, the LS F Sport is recognizable by its signature inverted-trapezoid grille and tasteful exterior styling cues. In addition to the stellar Mark Levinson sound system, occupant amenities are in abundance, with bolstered, perforated-leather sport seats that are ideal for long trips and allow drivers to take advantage of a responsive sport-tuned suspension. The 12.3-inch multidisplay LCD dash screen is packed with functionality, although the graphics are aesthetically unsophisticated in comparison to some more refined European and American designs. (www.lexus.com)