The ultra-light LaVie Z ultrabooks Lenovo introduced at CES are now available in the U.S. Both machines have Broadwell-based Core i7 processors and 13.3" 2560x1440 displays. The standard version is a conventional clamshell, while its LaVie Z 360 sibling features a 360° hinge that lets the machine contort into tent and tablet configurations.
Although Lenovo mentioned lower-end models when it first announced the systems, only the top-of-the-line variants are listed on the company's website. Both feature dual-core Core i7-5500U processors, 2560x1440 display resolutions, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB of solid-state storage. The internal storage is fairly limited, but you get a full-sized SD slot in addition to multiple USB 3.0 ports. HDMI output is also included alongside 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0.
Despite all that goodness, the LaVie Z laptops are only 0.67" (17 mm) thick. The 360 weighs 2.04lbs (0.93kg), which is about the same as the new MacBook, while the standard unit is slightly lighter. Lenovo claims both units manage up to nine hours of battery life with video playback.
And now, for the damage: the LaVie Z 360 is listed at a whopping $1850 before an instant discount knocks the price down to $1700, while the standard model starts at $1700 before instant savings slash the price to $1499. Even with the discounts, both machines are squarely in premium territory.