Lexus’ redesigned IS rocks the entry-level sport sedan segment, in hope of leaving their ‘boring’ image behind.
Whenever the name Lexus is mentioned, automotive enthusiasts would automatically associate the Japanese Automaker with boring cars for old people. With cars such as the LFA and the previous generation ISF, Lexus is hoping to change that.
With the new IS, the pursuit of shaking that image off continues. Gone is the plain jane look, and in its place is a complete redesign, with cues taken from the LF-LC Concept car. The small grille of its predecessors has been ditched in favour of a huge, dominating spindle grille.
The headlights are now smaller in size and have daytime running lights that may have been inspired by Nike. The car’s rear end has also received a radical redesign. Gone are the small taillights of yesteryears, and in their places, is a pair of aggressively-styled taillights that extend towards the rear quarter panels.
The interior has been revamped too. Ditching the ugly steering wheel and underwhelming looks is a good step forward for revamping their image. The new interior takes styling cues from the 2013 GS and 2010 LFA, which when placed together, actually looks very neat and presentable. The high quality leather though, that remains relatively unchanged.
A variety of powerplants and drivetrains are available for the IS. Both the 2.5-liter V6 and 3.5-liter V6 are available in both rear wheel and all wheel drive configurations. A hybrid model is in the pipelines, but for now, it is designated for Lexus' home market of Japan and Europe. Mated to both V6s is the excellent eight-speed automatic borrowed from the existing IS F. No word on performance yet, but looking at previous IS-es and the specs of the new model, we do expect it to be fast.
Combining aggressive looks, good performance and high quality materials sure makes for a comfortable, high speed cruiser. I actually like the way the car looks, and the power-plants sound exciting too. Sure beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but for me, Lexus one big step closer to ditching its ‘Grandpa Car’ image.