Reportage: Lexus LM : Chinese Theatre

We are in China.

Reportage: Lexus  LM : Chinese Theatre

We are in China. Not somewhere in China, but in Guandong, the most populous province in the Middle Kingdom. Bigger than Germany, Switzerland and Austria combined. Around 130 million people live here. We are traveling near the Shenzen Bay Sports Center, the most expensive area of ​​the 17-million-strong metropolis of Shenzhen, which stretches over 100 kilometers at its widest point. The prices per square meter make even a die-hard New Yorker or Londoner cringe. How much? 40,000 euros, please. As if ordered to emphasize these words, a garbage truck-orange Rolls-Royce Cullinan rolls around the corner, followed by a Mercedes S-Class. At least in classic black. These two automotive status symbols make a lot, but the passengers are not nearly as comfortable and comfortable on the road as we are.

We scurry through the hectic traffic after work in a van that is more than five meters long. With its boxy box design, the Lexus LM looks like an automobile created during Pablo Picasso's proto-Cubist period. The abbreviation LM stands for Luxury Mover and this name says it all for this vehicle. In China people still like to show off their luxury. The Diablo grille, which has been the stylistic device of Toyota's premium brand for some time, is correspondingly powerful. But even with this overtaking prestige front, the Lexus LM does not attract much attention in the land of rolling status symbols, even if insiders know that this Lexus costs up to 200,000 euros, shares the technology with the Toyota Alphard and was specially developed by the Japanese for China is.

In the big Asian country, you don't really achieve anything until you sit in the back right and someone else is holding the steering wheel. And right in the second row, the Lexus LM is in a league of its own, in such a way that the Rolls-Royce interior has the charm of a Chersterfield sofa, while the Lexus is an opulent cinema hall. A rolling Chinese theatre. Yes, that's where the prestigious Academy Awards, the Oscars, are presented every year. If you want, you can enjoy your favorite film in the Lexus on a huge 26-inch screen with an opulent sound system. If you turn the controller up all the way, even the motorcyclists at the traffic lights will bob along in time and in the LM you will flatten your ears

This works particularly well because you don't notice the hustle and bustle of everyday life outside and the Lexus LM feels like you're in a comfortable lounge. At the push of a button, the chauffeur is also outside with a separating disc, which can also be made milky if desired. The same applies to the panoramic glass roof, which wraps the fine interior in pleasant light. However, a blind serves as a dimmer.

The two seats in the rear transform the van into a luxury cinema on wheels with an airline first-class ambience. The chairs are covered with the finest leather and the upholstery is so cuddly soft that you can make yourself comfortable like a comfortable bed. Especially since the high-tech armchairs, upholstered in the finest leather, offer everything the heart of the financially strong cineast desires: air conditioning, heated seats and, of course, an elaborate massage function with various programs. So you can really knead yourself while Tom Cruise as Captain Pete "Maverick" Mitchell as a fearless fighter pilot in the flying adventure Top Gun 2 puts an end to the enemy fighters. If you want, you can access the Chinese counterparts from Netflix or YouTube or project your own program onto the screen using an HDMI cable or SD card. The command center is a touchscreen at the front of the armrest that separates the two feel-good thrones.

Of course, the Lexus LM is not a flying rocket. As befits an automobile from the Japanese hybrid pioneer, the Lexus LM 300 has a 155 kW / 211 hp full hybrid engine on board. The CVT transmission, which we often criticize, proves to be a blessing in the luxury glider, as it is about moving forward as smoothly as possible. Acceleration orgies are not appropriate.

That will not change when the next generation of the noble valance will also soon enrich the streets in Germany. A bit more power with 184 kW / 250 hp is allowed. And of course an even larger monitor, which then brings it to a whopping 48 inches. The lounge reclining seats remain. And that's good.