The sporty Lexus IS Sedan gets some focused tweaking for 2011, gaining more aggressive styling cues on the baseline Lexus IS 250 and IS 350 as well as a dedicated F Sport Package that raises its visual and performance profiles even further. Finally, the upcoming model year also sees the line expand to include a new IS 350 AWD model that will deliver the same all-wheel-drive system currently offered in the IS 250 AWD.
All versions of the 2011 Lexus IS Sedan clan benefit from revamped grille and front fascia treatments, revised taillamp lenses and tailpipe finishers, several new exterior colors and redesigned alloy wheels -- both the 17-inch standard rims and optional 18-inch upgrades. Subtle revisions to the standard leather-clad cabin include the addition of new metallic-look accent trim on the steering wheel rim, above the glovebox and around the speedometer and tachometer.
Drawing its inspiration from the hardcore IS F model, the new F Sport Package brings an added measure of enthusiast appeal to rear-drive versions of the IS 250 with its 204-horsepower/2.5-liter V6 and the IS 350 that packs a 306-horse/3.5-liter V6. Outside, the F Sport Package nets a new front spoiler lip and decklid spoiler, plus a dark-chrome grille insert that matches its unique 18-inch alloy wheels with a similar finish. While engine output figures don't change, the F Sport Package does complement its tougher looks with a more tautly tuned suspension and revamped steering feel.
Inside, the F Sport Package boasts more supportive -- and heated -- front buckets that match deeper, leather side bolsters with grippy microfiber center inserts. As expected, appropriate F Sport badging can be found on the steering wheel, shift knob and door-sill plates.
The entire 2011 Lexus IS Sedan lineup will go on sale in late summer. Pricing for the IS 250 will carry over from 2010 and start at $33,030 for the IS 250 and $36,650 for the IS 250 AWD. The IS 350 will open at $39,445 with the new IS 350 AWD commencing at $41,905. The F Sport Package will add $2,440 to the price of either rear-drive IS Sedan model. As is currently the case, individual F Sport components and accessory items will be available through Lexus dealers.