The debut of the fourth generation of the IS model also marked the premiere of the new corporate philosophy of Lexus Driving Signature. According to the idea, all future Lexuses will take on a more driver-oriented character within the framework of this idea.
A separate test track was built in Shimoyama, Japan, specifically for finishing new cars. Its creators drew inspiration from the legendary Nurburgring, the length of the route is 5.3 km, and the height difference is 75 m. This is where the driving character of the new Lexus IS sedan was forged. Sounds promising?
However, the “fourth” IS itself not so new. This is the result of a deep modernization of the current sedan model of 2013: the former platform N (although Toyota already has a more recent rear-wheel drive truck GA-L), the wheelbase of 2800 mm, the body frame and even the range of power units. But it can not be called a restyling, because the volume of changes made is considerable.
All exterior body panels are new, even the shape of the doorways has been changed. In length (4705 mm) and width (1840 mm), the new Lexus IS exceeds its predecessor by 30 mm, and the height is increased by 5 mm (to 1435 mm). The body is strengthened: there are now more welding points in the front part, the radiator frame has become more powerful, and the rear roof racks have been changed.
The front two-lever suspension and the rear multi-link are architecturally the same, but instead of steel front levers, aluminum ones are now installed (they are 18% lighter), and the springs and stabilizer have “lost weight” by 20% and 17%, respectively. Shock absorbers – with new valves that have become more sensitive to small movements of the rod on the microfile of asphalt. The diameter of the base wheels was increased from 17 to 18 inches, and 19-inch wheels were added to the Arsenal.
Engines and transmissions are the same. The basic rear-wheel drive Lexus IS 300 is equipped with a turbo 2.0 (244 HP) and an eight-speed “automatic”. The IS 300 AWD all-wheel-drive sedan has a 3.5-liter V6 (264 HP) and a six-speed transmission. A modification of the IS 350 with a boosted version of the same 3.5 engine (315 HP) is offered with both rear and all — wheel drive, while the transmission-with eight and six gears, respectively. From a standstill to 60 mph (97 km / h), the rear — wheel drive Lexus IS 350 can accelerate in 5.6 s, and the all-wheel drive can accelerate in 5.7 s. The hybrid version is still silent, although the previous model has it.
In the cabin, too, stick out the “ears” of the outgoing sedan: the shape and layout of the front panel are the same, and the steering wheel and the characteristic climate control unit with touch-sensitive temperature control strips are completely the same. One of the most striking differences is the free-standing display of the media system (previously it was included in the front panel), which, depending on the configuration, has a diagonal of 8.0 or 10.3 inches. To control the “music” on the Central tunnel, there was a touchpad (previously there was a joystick), and the side ventilation deflectors are now round.
The F Sport version is available only in the Lexus IS 350, it includes more aggressive bumpers, a different grille, a spoiler on the trunk lid and wide rear tires. And in the cabin — more prominent front seats, other devices (with a tachometer in the center) and appropriate decor. But in addition to the F Sport version, you can order a Dynamic Handling Package: adaptive suspension, Torsen self-locking on the rear axle, lightweight bbs wheels and the most extreme driving mode Sport S+.
The standard package includes the Lexus Safety System+ with radar and camera, which includes automatic braking and lane keeping systems, as well as adaptive cruise control.
The new Lexus IS will enter the key US market towards the end of autumn. These sedans will also be sold in Japan and Australia, the middle East, and some countries in Asia and South America. But Europe is no longer on this list: Lexus has left unsuccessful attempts to fight the “three-Wheeler” BMW and Mercedes C-class on their territory. And Lexus IS left the Russian market even earlier.