The high-tech all-weather Lexus features—in the sedans

03/31/14—This is a different kind of road trip.

You see, it takes place on all roads across North America as winter transforms to early spring—a time of year that eventually bursts forth with lovely sunshine and blooming flowers, but depending on where you live, also likes to throw some of the most treacherous driving conditions of the year at you: rain, sleet, snow, wind, or all of the above.

For veteran Lexus owners, mention the words “snow, ice, and rain” in the same breath as “Lexus” and most will think of the SUVs, the GX, the LX, and the RX, which offer some downright amazing traction technologies.

What most new Lexus owners, or future Lexus owners, may not realize however is that the Lexus sedans, the LS, GS, IS, and ES, also come equipped with some premium, high-tech features that offer a superb experience in less-than-ideal road and weather conditions. Consider:

All-Weather Drive: In the Lexus LS, the optional All-Weather Drive system[1] automatically distributes engine power to the wheels with the best grip, helping to improve traction and control on slippery surfaces, even during acceleration and cornering. On the IS and the GS, the optional system also monitors your driving conditions, and then allocates engine power between the front and rear axles from an even 50/50 ratio to as much as 30/70, depending on where power is needed to enhance traction and control on inclement surfaces.

Windshield-wiper deicer: Let’s say you’ve reached Whistler Village on a cold March day, and now you’re out and about, on the mountain, or settled into your accommodations. Optional in the LS, IS, GS, and ES, the windshield-wiper deicer automatically prevents the wipers from sticking while the vehicle is parked, thanks to embedded heating wires around the lower edge and corner of the windshield.

Headlamp washers: Besides being extremely practical as a guardian against ice and slushy-dirt build up, this feature is a premium must-have with Lexus sedans, and all models, that offer LED lights. Basically, LEDs are so efficient that they don’t emit enough wasted heat to keep the headlights ice-free in extreme cold-weather-driving conditions; to counter this, the Lexus headlamp washers automatically squirt washer fluid onto the lenses when the headlights are turned on.

NavWeather™: An optional feature with the Navigation System in several Lexus sedans, namely the LS, GS, and ES, NavWeather provides continuously updated local weather reports and three-day forecasts for specific cities; the system will even alert you to severe weather ahead.[2][3]

Water-repellent front-door glass: And finally, we have water-repellent glass technology, which has been offered with several Lexus models for many years. Essentially, the glass—standard or optional depending on the Lexus sedan—has been enhanced with a titanium-silica coating that helps the water bead up and run off. For models that offer water-repellent glass, you’ll find it on the driver and front-passenger windows, which makes it easier to see the mirrors during heavy rainfall.

Legal Disclaimers

[1] 19-in performance tires are expected to experience greater tire wear than conventional tires. Tire life may be substantially less than 15,000 miles, depending upon driving conditions.

[2] Always drive safely, obey traffic laws & focus on the road while driving. Availability and accuracy of the information provided by the Navigation System is dependent upon many factors. Use common sense when relying on information provided. Services and programming subject to change. Services not available in every city or roadway. Navigation updates are available at an additional cost from your local Lexus dealer. See your Navigation System Owner’s Manual or Lexus dealer for details.

[3] SiriusXM services require a subscription after 90-day trial period. Subscriptions governed by SiriusXM ® Customer Agreement available at SiriusXMcom. If you decide to continue your SiriusXM® service at the end of your complimentary trial, the plan you choose will automatically renew and bill at then-current rates unless you call 1-800-877-3987 to cancel. Fees and programming subject to change. Available only to those at least 18 years of age in the 48 contiguous United States and D.C.