By on June 9, 2020

Remember when, suddenly, news of new sedans poured forth from more than one corner? That was a hell of a week.

Today was supposed to bring about the reveal of the next-generation Lexus IS — a product tasked with keeping Lexus’ sporty sedan mojo alive, given the recent demise of the GS. Alas, the debut was not to be. Lexus scrapped Tuesday’s debut.

In an exceedingly brief statement, the brand said it “has respectfully postponed the world premiere of the new IS, which was originally scheduled for June 9.”

“Revised timing will be announced soon,” Lexus said.

While an in-person debut of this and every other new model is a no-go in the age of coronavirus, the IS’ delay is clearly the product of civil unrest in the United States stemming from the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police. Waves of protests continue as destructive rioting seems to have diminished, but the public consciousness remains fixated on the issue, at least for the time being.

That said, it’s still odd to see the debut of a car delayed because of a social issue, regardless of its legitimacy. It looks like parent corp Toyota wasn’t willing to risk the possibility of being called insensitive for going about the business of an automaker amid the tense atmosphere — an atmosphere that carries over heavily to social media, where plugged-in auto journos appear almost wholly preoccupied with the protests. Toyota read the room.

As for the car itself, the only thing we know about the next-gen IS is that the feature this writer hated most about the current-gen model seems to be rectified in the form of a full-width LED taillight setup. Expect to see a rescheduled debut before the end of the month.

[Image: Lexus]

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15 Comments on “Oh, You Were Expecting a New Lexus IS Today, Weren’t You?...”

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    “the IS’ delay is clearly the product of civil unrest in the United States”

    How is that so clear? Maybe they decided to go back and fix the grille.

  • avatar

    So the thing you hated most was the tail lights? Not the compact interior?

  • avatar

    Seriously ? This is about COVID-19 and nothing more. As for the tragic murder of Mr. Floyd, don’t worry;the media will never let go of it.

    • 0 avatar

      The criminal being made into martyr.

      • 0 avatar

        He is not a criminal. I would nominate him for the 2020 Nobel Peace prize. He single-handedly changed American history

        • 0 avatar

          No, he did not. The history is to be made when red necks lose patience.

          • 0 avatar

            The history is to be made when red necks lose patience.

            Yes as if there isn’t a whole dang sports league (NASCAR) that exists because of breaking the law (running moonshine) booby trapping stills and exercising 2nd amendment rights (inevitably killing members of law enforcement.)

            Heck the town I went to college in (which was located in Ohio and only about an hour from the MI line) the largest old stately homes along the river had been built with ill gotten gains from Prohibition.

            But yes everybody’s hands are clean save the protesters.

  • avatar
    Art Vandelay

    Could just be delaying it to clear out the previous model that nobody buys.

    • 0 avatar

      Certainly the way Avalons were being sold in Canada. In February the Toyota Canada website had only 2019 models for sale, with a scarcely believable magnificent whole $5K off list. You’d do better at a normal Toyota Red Toe-Tag sale. So $45 and $40K for last year’s car. Wonderful. The cheaper deluxe model had many features the higher-priced techie model really needed, and vice versa but much less so, but at least the expensive one had a grille that didn’t promote instant barfing. Confronted with a car that didn’t know what it was and being asked to pay more for mostly less in the techie version, customers stayed away in droves. Funny how that works.

      Haven’t seen a Lexus IS in years that I noticed. Except for the last bad redo and a better Camry engine sometime or other, who cares, the car is essentially straight out of 1999, and made for folk of essentially small stature. Nobody much was ever going to bite on that combo, except for a societal brain seizure for the 2007 model year, and so it has proved long term. It’s perfect for that someone or other you’ve never met. The new one seems like yet another re-jig, the fourth, or is it the sixth rehash? Even the Wiki page is a complete snooze complete with an attempt at forced up-beat-ness. And everyone yawns and turns over to get another five minutes of shuteye.

      Maybe Toyota showed it to their dealers already by video, and got zero orders for stock in return. Most likely explanation for delaying the intro. Nobody gives a rat-sass.

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