First Look: 2014 Lexus IS 350 F Sport – Road & Track

22 May 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on First Look: 2014 Lexus IS 350 F Sport – Road & Track

Lexus IS350

By Jason Cammisa January 9, / Photos by Marc Urbano

The engineer for the 2014 Lexus IS in front of us and said the development was to be the most fun-to-drive car in the segment. He this with a straight no less.

Huh? Is this what’s going on at Lexus? the GS likely is the best-handling and most car in its segment, but that car has always a bit of an outlier.

So now the IS has targeted the BMW 3-series, as the BMW 3-series lost a bit of its own direction. of the two companies appears to be running to the other one just was. It no sense.

Here are the important details the next-gen Lexus IS that next week in Detroit: New obviously. Better, for the most The harpoon-shaped LED driving lights good.

The big mustache-look grille may some getting used to. about the same height. will be three models: an IS and IS 350, and an IS 300h hybrid. No (yet) of an IS-F. The 250’s is largely carried over; the 350 now a variant of the current IS-F’s automatic. (The 250 continues on six forward gears.)

The preproduction we drove were equipped the F-Sport package, as seen which includes comfy Lexus’ Drive Mode and, on IS 350 models, active and steering. More immediately however, is the ultra-cool LCD gauge that, like the LF-A features a moving ring tricks your eye into the tachometer itself can slide out of the way to room for additional information.

But stepping from the old IS into the new the most noticeable change is the position: Lexus lowered the by almost an inch, and you now feel you’re sitting in the IS, rather on top of it. The automatic shifter falls to hand and feels expensive, and the stability control can be fully We’re off to a good start, it seem.

The small-rimmed steering commands an accurate steering whose meaty weight is for a sport sedan. In normal not much comes through in the way of (assist is provided electrically)-and, like most other models, its steering-wheel mounted paddles are met with a distinct of interest on the part of the powertrain Even in full manual upshifts occur manually at and requests for downshifts often go

Even repeated ones.

the IS does offer in spades is even on the wet autocross course, the Turanza all-season tires on tenaciously (and there’s a lot of there: fronts measure rears are 255/35-YR18.) As you might the staggered tire size steady-state understeer. On the slippery the open rear differential the inside tire, so tail-out for the camera required getting the car using big, violent inputs. The IS 250 was far more willing to than the IS 350; for that we can it has a lighter front end.

The rain cleared for our drive on the and there, the new IS shone much Intake noise (thanks to a symposer) is surprisingly loud in the but the IS demonstrated an appropriate ride-handling The brakes felt great, though occasional clunks the transmission served to remind us this was still a prototype-and there will be time to the shift-paddle programming issue.

Lexus IS350

And the signals. Since Lexus is on a pursuit of BMW, the company has the Germans’ turn signal here, as in the GS. But what they done is stolen the latest version-the only way to cancel the signal is to pull the lever in the direction.

That brings with it the of activating the turn signals in the direction.

Lexus also to pay closer attention to the latest of iDrive-the IS, like the GS, has no radio buttons. If Lexus wants to the Germans, at least it should the Germans after they’ve their first-generation systems. re-installed the important buttons stupidly pulled out in the first

We’ll know a lot more the IS next week in Detroit, but for the we’re not sure it achieves its The Cadillac ATS 3.6, for all of its many many) faults, is more fun to Is the IS more fun than a 3-series?

Perhaps. But the 3-series isn’t all fun these days.

More why is Lexus chasing BMW? The most successful cars-the ES and the RX crossover-are vehicles that compete with the Germans at And they’re better for it.

Rather continuously chasing BMW, we Lexus would find its own And stick to it.

This Is A Developing

Lexus IS350
Lexus IS350
Lexus IS350
Lexus IS350
Lexus IS350
Lexus IS350
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