2013 Lexus IS-F review | Expert and user reviews | carwow.co.uk

18 Jun 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on 2013 Lexus IS-F review | Expert and user reviews | carwow.co.uk
Lexus IS F

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Subtle styling

Sounds fantastic

Plenty of standard features

BMW M3 is better to drive

Firm ride

Little space for rear passengers

The Lexus IS-F is the barely-heard-of M3-challenger from the sober Lexus. It’s built like a battleship but is astonishingly fast, makes an epic noise, and will outlast your grandchildren.

It’s not faultless though, as the handling isn’t up there with the best of its rivals. It’s a great car though, and one that the experts liked a lot.

The heavy depreciation should make private buyers pause before signing on the dotted line, but it does mean that they make a great second-hand buy.


The heavily-bolstered seats look great and provide very good support; the steering wheel is well-positioned too and together they give a comfortable driving position. One journalist ran one as a long-term test car and said that it wore very well too over 28,000 miles, still looking new after a year of hard use.

The Sport button is tucked away under the dash, as is the VDC, so there is some fiddling to be done before you set off if you want to have fun.


The Lexus is, according to the experts, best viewed as an old-school bruiser, rather than a sober, efficient sports car; the V8 engine makes it a devastatingly effective car, although it lacks the handling finesse of some of it’s German rivals.

One journalist, who ran one as a long-term test car, said that there was never a dull moment with the Lexus, and that it drove faultlessly over 28,000 miles of hard use. Perhaps that’s all you need to know about the IS-F, that it’s a Lexus at its heart.


The 5.0-litre V8 engine develops 417bhp and 372lb ft of torque, enough to make the IS-F a very fast car indeed. Coupled to an eight-speed, semi-automatic gearbox (which is at least 2 gears too many according to most) it’ll hit 62mph in 4.8 seconds and go on to a top speed of 168mph.

Lexus IS F

It makes an ”epic snarling” noise when prodded, which you’ll do a lot because it’s such a lovely sound. You’ll pay for it though. It’s fuel consumption might be better than any of its rivals, but that still means that you’ll be putting in a gallon of petrol every 20 miles.

Value for money

You can’t ignore the savage depreciation, with cars worth less than half their new value after three years, mainly because of its still-uncertain image. On the bright side, this does make them a startlingly good second-hand buy…

Worth noting

The ‘F’ in the name stands for ‘Fast’, which tells you what the engineers at Lexus were aiming for when they built it.


The Lexus IS-F is the hyper-saloon that you’ve never heard of, which is odd as the experts agree that it looks great, goes very well indeed, and is enormous fun.

It’s not quite as good as the BMW M3 or the Mercedes C63 AMG, but it is much cheaper and has a raw feel to it that some will find very attractive indeed.

Key Details

Price range: £58,416 – £59,436 MPG: 24 Date released: 2008 Replacement due: Not for a couple of years yet Model history: The IS-F got a facelift in 2010, with a few technical changes, including the addition of an LSD (limited slip differential) as standard and mild interior styling differences. Other variants: The IS-F is based on the IS Saloon Read Lexus IS-F reviews

Lexus IS F
Lexus IS F
Lexus IS F
Lexus IS F
Lexus IS F
Lexus IS F
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