Malaysia launches 2021 Lexus LM 350 - 2x an Alphard's price, but seats just 4
Sanjay · Apr 15, 2021 01:00 PM
It may slightly resemble one, but don’t mistake it for an Alphard - this is the 2021 Lexus LM 350 that’s just been launched in Malaysia. Coming in sole 4-seater guise and imported (CBU) from Japan, prices for this house-on-wheels starts from RM 1.11 million.
At RM 1,106,513, it's circa RM 135k dearer than the Lexus LS 500 Luxury (RM 1.02 mil) and 2.5x more than the Alphard (official UMWT unit, with the 3.5-litre V6) it's based on, which starts from RM 446k.
Exterior - More opulent than Alphard
While the platform and powertrain are shared with its cheaper Toyota sibling, Lexus has infused their takumi touch on every other aspect of the model.
Beyond the familiar blocky shape, Lexus’ trademark spindle grille sits in between triple-beam projector LED headlights (with integrated L-shaped DRLs) that makes for a rather imposing face.
Profile remains familiar, if only spiced by the ‘L’-shaped chrome motifs on the doors. But let me draw your attention to the wheels.
Check out these 18-inch, Hyper Chrome Metallic-finish wheels. The design is anything but subtle, and the intricate, inter-woven pattern lends the car its character. It’s splendid stuff, and Lexus says they’re noise-reducing too.
Lending the LM 350 a girthier look are the L-shaped LED tail lamps that are linked by a light bar. We like the clean rear-end, made better with tasteful chrome detailing.
Only two colours are available, either in White Pearl Crystal Shine or Black.
Interior - Seats four only!
Spindle grille and chrome wheels aside, buyers will be more interested in how it is inside anyway.
Semi-aniline leather is key here, with most touchpoints (including the rear grab handles!) covered in the soft-touch material. And yes, you noticed, it only seats four (including driver and passenger).
The captain seats are fully-reclinable, ventilated, and can pamper you with a full body massage.
Placed in between them is a little touchscreen that can control seat functions as well as another party trick of the LM 350 - the 26-inch screen in the middle.
Officially, Lexus says the screen is for 'business discussions' but YouTube and browsing the Internet works just fine. Connectivity is handled by phone mirroring, or you can plug in your laptop through a HDMI cable.
But that's not all - the screen sits in between two other cool features. There's a mini fridge below, and right up top is a privacy glass that can be retracted, put up, and made translucent at a touch of a button.
Yes, the LM 350's 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system comes with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity as well. Music is channelled through a 19-speaker Mark Levinson setup.
No hybrid option here (known as the LM 300h in certain markets), only the sole 3.5-litre V6 shared with the Alphard:
2021 Lexus LM 350 powertrain
3.5-litre, naturally-aspirated V6
296 PS @ 6,000 rpm
361 Nm @ 4,700 rpm
Front-wheel drive (FWD)
Safety - Lexus Safety System+
Lexus' slew of advanced driver assistance system (ADAS) functions are present here, encompassing these functions:
Forward collision warning (FCW)
Dynamic radar cruise control (DRCC)
Lane departure alert (LDA)
Lane tracing assist (LTA)
Adaptive high beam (AHB)
Other stuff include blind spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert (BSM, RCTA) and a 3D 360-degree camera.
From RM 1.15 million, this is nothing less than a house on wheels. It's clearly a few cuts above other MPVs in its class. Some will say it's a needlessly-expensive box, but the LM 350 just oozes charisma and power that many cheap converts can't even hold a candle to.
With humble beginnings collecting diecast models and spending hours virtually tuning dream cars on the computer, his love of cars has delightfully transformed into a career. Sanjay enjoys how the same passion for cars transcends boundaries and brings people together.