How the Lexus IS became the definitive sport sedan

How the Lexus IS became the definitive sport sedan

Lexus describes the new IS as the nameplate’s “most thrilling and aggressive iteration.” The new IS is agile and aggressive, delivering decent performance for both weekday and weekend drives. Just like the previous-generation IS models, the current iteration was developed with the Lexus Driving Signature in mind, providing the driver utmost control and confidence on the road. Aside from its high-powered performance, the new IS also features a beautifully crafted interior, luxurious ride comfort, and responsive handling.

The very first IS was launched by Lexus in 1998 with a goal to challenge its competitors in the luxury midsize sedan segment while fortifying its values as a luxury car brand.

The first iteration of the Lexus IS was powered by an inline six-cylinder engine mated to a six-speed gearbox. It featured chronograph-inspired gauges that added a touch of elegance in the interior. Motoring enthusiasts also raved about the excellent handling and impressive performance that the IS delivered. Due to its outstanding and innovative features, the sedan received the Japan’s Car of the Year award for 1998.

Lexus has continued to further improve the IS throughout the years, with the addition of larger and more responsive powerplants. The IS range was primarily equipped with six-cylinder engines. Some markets also offered an entry-level four-cylinder petrol engine. In 2007, Lexus launched the IS F with a 5.0-liter V8 engine that churns out 417hp.

The third-generation IS was released in 2013, with an engineering brief that further refined this noteworthy nameplate.

The latest iteration of the IS has undergone a very unique development process. It was tested at the Shimoyama Technical Center Test Track, which depicts the most challenging and demanding roads in the world. Each aspect of the new IS was developed on the extremely challenging on-road course to provide an exhilarating, one-of-a-kind driving experience.

“With the aim of making ever-better cars, we have continued to make various efforts in ‘feeling the road’ and ‘conversing with cars’ through driving tests around the world, including our Five Continent Drive Project and the Nürburgring 24 Hours endurance race,” Lexus Master Driver Akio Toyoda shared. “Based on such experiences, we have replicated a variety of roads in the world at the new test course. In addition to conducting driving tests all over the world, and with the replication of severe driving conditions at the new test course, we intend to thoroughly hone every one of our models and develop the types of cars that epitomize the true joy of driving.”

The IS has a dual personality, providing ride comfort while in city streets and delivering superb response and handling during track days. The car’s excellent suspension responsiveness and dynamic performance are results of rigorous engineering.

The IS F Sport variant is powered by a naturally aspirated V6 engine that generates 300hp and 380Nm of torque. The engine is paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Meanwhile, the IS 300h is powered by a 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder hybrid power plant coupled to a Lexus E-CVT intelligent transmission that enables optimum efficiency in evert driving condition.

To know more about the Lexus IS, log on to the official website of Lexus Manila at and follow @lexusmanila on Facebook and Instagram. To book an appointment with a personal sales consultant, log on to the Lexus Remote page at

Photo from Lexus

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Lexus IS
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