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Twenty years ago Lexus unveiled the first GS luxury sedan sending a shot across the bow of the German luxury sports sedans of the time. The Lexus brand was just an upstart at the time and so the Japanese firm made the wise decision to contact an Italian design studio (Giugiaro Design) to sculpt the vehicle’s sheetmetal.

Fast forward two decades and the GS has become a tired shadow of its former greatness, particularly in the face of new powerhouses from BMW and Mercedes. On the eve of the New York Auto Show, Lexus has revealed the LF-Gh concept, a look not only at the future of the GS sedan, but of the Lexus brand in general.

If the oversized grille is any indication, Lexus has no intention of rolling over and playing dead in front of the Germans, but instead seems poised to attack with performance, luxury and (because it’s a hybrid Lexus) fuel economy. In fact, while many of the design cues (like the low rear bumper) are there to give the car a more serious RWD performance look, the clean lines, flush door handles and lack of side mirrors indicate a focus on aerodynamic fuel efficiency.

Watch the video after the jump.

More: Lexus LF-Gh Video: First Look at the Brand’s New Design Concept on
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