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Now in its 3rd-generation, the 2014 Lexus IS comes to market with a compelling new design, improved handling and more interior space. In addition, Lexus' revamped infotainment platform makes its debut in the 2014 IS. Also, a manual transmission is no longer available.
With an all-new model due out next year, the Lexus IS has only a few upgrades for 2013. IS models equipped with navigation now include Lexus' latest Enform infotainment system with automatic phonebook downloading via Bluetooth and HD Radio with iTunes Tagging. Additionally, the IS250's optional 6-speed manual transmission has been discontinued.
Having received several upgrades in 2011, including revised front and rear styling, minor interior updates, the addition of an all-wheel-drive option to the IS 350 and an F Sport package for both IS 250 and IS 350, Lexus gives it a rest in 2012. There are two new colors in 2012.
Both the IS 250 and 350 receive a slight exterior freshening, touting new front and rear bumpers, grille and tail light clusters. Interior changes include folding rear headrests, new interior colors and new seat and door panel sew patterns. The IS 250 gains Lexus' Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management system (VDIM) as standard equipment, while all IS sedans receive improved suspension and steering tuning.
Both the IS 250 and IS 350 carry forward with only minor cosmetic detail enhancements. The sole change of note is that the IS 250 AWD's previously standard semi-aniline heated and ventilated leather seats are now optional, and are replaced by the baseline heated leather units that are fitted to the rear-drive models.
Fresh from a complete transformation in 2006, the sporty and affordable Lexus IS touts an aggressive look, a more responsive chassis and a choice between two potent six-cylinder engines. With its increased interior volume the rear-wheel-drive IS is now better situated to compete with the BMW 3 Series, Infiniti G35 and Audi A4. While some purists will grumble about the availability of a manual transmission and all-wheel drive only on the less-powerful IS 250, the IS 350's 5.6-second zero to 60-mph time and advanced VDIM (Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management) stability system should go a long way toward pleasing most. The availability of such uncommon options as Dynamic Radar Cruise Control and Adaptive Front Lighting System (AFS) place the IS a step above the competition.
By Alan (PA) on Sunday, October 16, 2011
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 62,000overall rating 7 of 10rating details
Pros: "sporty looking, awd, quality, luxury car"
Cons: "doesnt quite hold up to its competitors"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I purchased the vehicle used 2nd owner with about 51000 miles on the car. I am a younger gentleman who enjoys luxury cars and automotive sports. The 06 IS250 AWD is a nice luxury car overall however it does leave a bit of room for improvement. The vehicle is All wheel drive and alright on gas milage. I usually get 18 city and 22 hwy. though these numbers are based at lower speeds (<50 MPH) When I take longer drives on the highway its not uncommon for me to see around 28ish MPG traveling at a decent speed. First the value. The vehicle is on the high ball of the vehicles competitors such as the BMW 3 series or the Infinity, Mercedes counterparts. Especially in this current economy and it being a used car. However it does hold its value a bit more than other cars. The loop I got at the dealership was that the car is AWD and good on gas. Though there are a few other cars that are much much better on gas and still AWD. I stuck with a Lexus due to its heritage and reliability. Driving dynamics to me are very important. I frequent autocross races by the SCCA as well as the occasional twisty backroads. The vehicle weighs quite a bit for being a luxury car and a car in general, even for a 4 door saloon. It is also rather top heavy. Google autocross by the SCCA and you can see why that may be a problem for me. I wanted a car that was quick and agile but still luxury. It kind of failed that want. However you can't necessarily test that with a dealer rep in the car on a test drive. It also lacks much power. I know that a standard base honda or a minivan can out power this V6 so don't expect a sports car handling nor power. Though compared to its competitors, the vehicle stands the furthest behind in the performance catagory. Reliability on my car has been tested in this short time I have owned the vehicle. When Lexus states its Maintenance intervals need to be done, they are right on the money. I just completed the 60k miles and it was the perfect time to do all the items mentioned. So if the previous owner did the Maintenance than the car is reliable in that as long as the schedule is followed the car runs like a dream. However if things are neglected, like my brake fluid was, the consequences can be adverse and costly. The interior of the vehicle is well done and perfect in almost every aspect. The only change to be made would be to add a different radio/center consol button color instead of classic toyota green to match the interior of the is250. Side note. When shopping for one of these cars. Look into the three "packages" and all the options prior to your search. Some things available in certain packages are costly to upgrade if purchased without. For example, if you dislike the standard radio and want navigation, choose your car wisely. There is only 1 (terrible) option to upgrade to navigation and its aftermarket and costly. Lexus informed me that you either get navigation initally or not at all. Also things like illuminated side sills on the luxury package are around $300 to purchase later. The available packages are Luxury, Premium, and Sport. Options include Navigation, Mark Levinson Sound, headlamp washers, power rear sunshade, ect. All im saying is do your research and know what you want prior to looking. The exterior is sleek, sporty, and well designed. Other than the car looking a touch too high (gap between tire and wheel well) it has everything you could want on an exterior. The quality of the items in the vehicle is unmatched. The leather is quite perfect and quality. The wood trim appears quite high end though it is not real wood obviously. The exterior is well made and the paint is strong and durable. The engine feels strong. Keep in mind it is an extremely higher quality toyota. Though most of the parts of the car, as far as mechanical items go, are toyota parts. There be nothing left to say about comfort and convenience. The ride is peaceful and very smooth. I highly highly recommend the Navigation System since it is touch screen and adds great things like wireless bluetooth, a backup camera, GPS, touchscreen controls, detailed maintenance schedule, usb, auxilary ports, ect. this category is where the car shines. It is very technologically savy and advanced with tons of options and that lexus comfort. this category is the best of its competitors. Overall, if the car was slightly cheaper in initial price, had any kind of engine power/better handling, and got better gas milage...it would be a luxury supercar. Though the lexus does fall behind in some ways. Lastly and rarely mentioned, when repairs are needed, the labor and parts at a lexus dealership or even private dealership are beyond expensive. yes the maintenance isnt bad but it is very costly. my local dealer wanted 2,400 for the 60k maintenance. I did it all myself for around $500 in parts. Another piece of advice is to test out the cars.......and its competitors. Finally dont settle for anything less than fully loaded is250's. you wont regret it at all."
18 people out of 18 found this review helpful
By Jittle4u (AL) on Wednesday, October 10, 2012
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 1,500overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Tade it for a Hybird, exact model Fun to Drive"
Cons: "Gas Prices... and where can I place MP3 player?"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Walked in the dealership, took a good look at it and without any hesitation or evaluation, I purchased it without a 2nd thought. Stylish and so comfortable! Yet I have fears that it will be stolen or scratched. Don't hear the engine at all and she has great power, plus it makes you feel like a superstar at traffic lights. ;-D"
11 people out of 11 found this review helpful
By vman (CA) on Saturday, March 24, 2012
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 3,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "HID lights, navigation, quiet, comfy, gas mileage"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Was going to buy a Jeep Wrangler until I foresaw gas prices spiking. Went to the Lexus dealer next door as a "joke" to see if I could afford one of these. Found out that not only was this car a value, the material quality, and ride was second to none! Gotta have navigation and HID headlights! The LED daytime light strip in the from has the cool Audi-look to it. The Xenon lights are awesome! The navigation/bluetooth has been a life-saver! The 18" rims turn heads and the gas mileage is awesome (36mpg on hwy)!"
7 people out of 7 found this review helpful