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LIFE BY LEXUS 22


A GRAND TOUR


DRAMATIC, THRILLING, OF IMPRESSIVE PROPORTIONS AND EASY ON THE EYE, THE BIG ISLAND OF HAWAII AND THE LEXUS LC 500 HAVE MORE IN COMMON THAN I’D EVER HAVE THOUGHT…


T


he Big Island (officially named Hawaii) must be one of the best places to take a road trip. The largest island in the 2 414km-long Hawaiian archipelago, it offers incredibly diverse


terrain, from gold, red, black and green sand beaches to lush rainforests, barren volcanic rock fields, dramatic cliffs, rolling hills and cascading waterfalls. It’s home to one of the world’s most active volcanoes – Kilauea – and two of the greatest mountains. Mauna Kea, a dormant volcano, is the highest mountain on earth (higher even than Everest) at 10 058m, if measured from base to summit (much of it is under water), while the massive Mauna Loa rises almost 9km above the sea floor and is also one of the most active volcanoes in the world. The Big Island also boasts 11 of the world’s 13


climate zones, so we had great fun putting the Lexus LC 500 through its paces in both wet and dry conditions along the most scenic routes. The challenge, when placed behind the wheel


Kilauea


volcano on Big Island has been almost constantly active


since 1983.


of Lexus’ flagship performance coupé, is keeping your foot light. It was incredibly tempting to unleash the roar of the five-litre V8 petrol engine as we pulled off after lunch for a 2,5-hour drive back to the hotel. But with a speed limit of 72-88km/h, visible speed enforcement and the unfamiliarity of a right-hand drive, I happily compromised for a slower pace and the sounds coming out of the 12-speaker Mark Levinson audio system. A more relaxed drive also allowed me the


opportunity to enjoy the car’s quick reflexes, exceptional handling and stability on the roads, while enjoying the views, made easy by the low hoodline, low instrument panel and easy-to-reach controls. Pulling into the winding driveway of the Four


Seasons Resort Hualalai on Kona Coast (voted Best Luxury Hotel Worldwide by Luxury Travel Advisor in 2016) in this masterpiece that claimed the EyesonDesign Award for Production Car and Best Designed Interior, I couldn’t help feeling as if I was living the life – even if just for a day.


GALLO IMAGES/GETTY IMAGES/ISTOCKPHOTO/ALAMY WORDS & PHOTOGRAPHS: INGRID WOOD


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