Unveiled late Monday, the next-generation Lexus IS sedan’s identity should be no secret to those familiar with the current model. Toyota Motor Corp’s premium rear-drive sports sedan is a clear descendant of what came before, keeping the previous model’s proportions and many of its lines. Certainly, there’s only so much you can do with a corporate spindle grille.
Now alone in its mission, what with the midsize GS’s recent passing, the new IS doesn’t try anything radical. It’s not a game changer, smashing segment conventions. Rather, it simply tries to do better.
Well, this week’s debut of the new Lexus IS didn’t go as planned, what with company execs opting to wait until things cooled down in the streets and Twitter feeds of America.
Turns out we didn’t have long to wait. The 2021 IS, already teased in a shadowy image released by Lexus earlier this month, will make an online appearance on Monday, June 15th. Lexus offered up a few new views of the thing, too. Your day is made!
I must make a confession. Of all the vehicles on the market today — a diverse crowd if there ever was one — no car’s rear end annoys me more than that of the Lexus IS.
The brand’s sporty compact offering went in a controversial direction for its third generation, entering the 2014 model year with half-melted ice cream cone styling. Seems the taillights suffered worst from the heat, as the red plastic managed to bleed nearly all the way down to the rear wheel well. And the first-gen was so clean!
For Gen 4, it seems Lexus is prepared to correct this mistake.
Car manufacturers don’t always strike a chord with consumers, and even studious brand Lexus is not immune from model flops. Back in 2012, the company offered three compact vehicles nobody wanted.
Today you’ll select one to take home for keeps, whether you like it or not.
To say I was shocked at the color is an understatement. Like many, I’ve always known Lexus as a builder of staid, solid, but uninspiring sedans for “older” people. As an impressionable youth who watched too much TV, I always wanted a Lexus commercial to come immediately after the “Not Your Father’s Oldsmobile” spot for the perfect “This Is Your Father’s Oldsmobile” juxtaposition.
I once even asked an exchange student if Lexus was a Japanese acronym for champagne beige pearl metallic.
No, this bright red (Lexus calls it Redline) 2016 Lexus IS200t F-Sport that appeared in my parking spot isn’t the dull sedan your dad may have driven. It’s potentially the sports sedan this dad wants to drive — but with one trivial flaw that might keep me from signing a note.
Lexus announced Friday that its RC coupe would get the turbo four treatment for 2016, following the NX, GS, IS and [s]RX[/s] Toyota’s eventual march toward smaller-displacement, boosted engines for many of its sedans and coupes.
According to the automaker, the 2-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which produces 241 horsepower, will be available in the coupe with an eight-speed automatic with rear-wheel drive only. It will join three other engines available in the RC.
The all-wheel drive RC300 will come equipped with a 3.5-liter V-6 that makes 255 horsepower mated to a six-speed automatic, a rear-wheel drive RC350 with a 3.5-liter V-6 that makes 306 horsepower married to an eight-speed automatic, and a 468-horsepower 5-liter V-8 in the RC-F and how many engines does Toyota have on its shelves?
Lexus will offer for the first time in the United States a four-cylinder IS, the automaker announced Friday.
The compact luxury car will sport a variety of engines starting with a 2-liter turbocharged four-cylinder borrowed from the NX200t, and two variations of its 3.5-liter V-6 that it currently offers.
The smaller mill in the IS200t will produce 241 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, according to the automaker, and will only be offered with rear-wheel drive.
With the Lexus IS finally ditching its dated and overripe 2.5L V6 in favor of the new Atkinson/Otto-cycle 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder, the vehicle above will have the least powerful V6 engine in America: the 224 hp, 3.0L V6-powered Mitsubishi Outlander.
Making matters worse, it requires premium fuel … and that’s not the worst part.
BMW moved over 140,000 3-Series’ last year in America. They didn’t do this by being the most luxurious option or by being the best handling option. (The truth is hard to hear, I’m sorry.) Instead, BMW did this by doing exactly what shoppers asked for; luxury car buyers want a comfy ride with a luxury logo on the front, good fuel economy and to read reviews that extol the track-day virtues of their car of choice. The average buyer will never be on a track, but it’s critical to know your car belongs there.
What BMW dealers don’t want you to know: there are two sedans in this segment that are arguably better on the track than a 328i or 335i and we’re talking about one of them today, the IS 350 F Sport.
After taking a sales hit due to tsunami-related production woes, Lexus has been trying to regain their mojo with a new product offensive. Things started out with the new Lexus GS sedan that Jack Baruth and I loved on and off the track, followed by a revised RX. With the redesigned IS, the bulk of their lineup has been overhauled. Initially, I was a little concerned that the Lexus IS sedan would receive nothing more than a new nose and some LED lights for 2014 but the Japanese 3-Series fighter came out swinging when we were invited to the launch event earlier in the year. I came away impressed with the IS 350’s road manners, but most buyers will be shopping for the less powerful IS 250 and it’s taken us this long to get our hands on one.
A year ago, TTAC published a story about out-of-control Toyota Tacomas. Since then, reports continue to surface of “unintended acceleration” events in Lexus ES and IS and Toyota Camry and Camry Solara vehicles. Toyota insists that all-weather floor mats are causing the problem; the accelerator becomes stuck under the rubber. Autocoverup.com alleges, well, you know. “This is a known problem with over 432 complaints,” the site’s author insists. According to NHTSA’s Defect Investigation’s database, reports of unintended acceleration in Lexus ES models first surfaced around 2004 and continued until late 2008. One report (ODI-NHTSA Complaint Number 10252860) describes the problem:
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