2015 Lexus IS 350 F Sport Long-Term Wrap Up
You know that old yarn about how time flies? Seems that's not just the case when having fun, but also when you're highly satisfied with a car. That was certainly true when it came to our certified pre-owned (CPO) 2015 Lexus IS 350 F Sport long-term test-vehicle, whose time with us felt far shorter than its 6-month stint. It left us weeks ago, but I often find myself wishing it were still around.
Part of the family
When this CPO Lexus IS 350 joined the KBB.com fleet of long-term test vehicles in April, it quickly became a staff favorite. Rarely was the vehicle left undriven, even when ostensibly flashier cars waited in the wings. The reason is because it's just so darned easy to live with and eager to please.
Whether one of our editors needed a car that was an easy errand-getter and played nice in crowded parking lots or was ready at a moment's notice for a several hundred-mile road trip, the 2015 Lexus IS 350 F Sport was always adept. And being a Lexus, it brought a premium experience no matter where it went, whether portrayed in its style, flawless power delivery or by pumping crisp tunes from its 15-speaker Mark Levinson premium audio system.
Complaints were few, but existent. Like other 2014-2016 Lexus cars, ours was hit with a software glitch that played havoc with the navigation, entertainment, connectivity and even climate functions. Lexus' recommended remedy was to take it to a dealership, but we found an even more convenient, do-it-yourself method that your IT professional might recommend: We essentially reset the car. We did this by disconnecting the battery terminals and waiting 10 minutes.
Our DIY hack did the trick, bringing the system back to life just in time for a road trip from Southern California to San Francisco. The system helped us wind our way through traffic-addled Los Angeles, but we wished for a screen size that was slightly larger (and higher definition) than this one's 7-inch VGA display. We should also note that when our certified pre-owned Lexus arrived, its anti-glare screen was already scratched, a phenomena that's been noted by other owners of these cars. If you're considering one of these CPO Lexus cars for yourself, be sure to inspect the screen to make sure it's not marred.
These issues aside, the Lexus offered blissful, reliable operation during rain, sun, cold and heat. To prove that last point, albeit not by choice, one of our editors and her husband even endured 122-degree temperatures in the Lexus during a road trip to Palm Springs. If there were ever a time to use the Lexus' cooled front seats, this was it.
One of the biggest benefits of our Lexus had nothing to do with its tangible features or even its satisfying driving manners. It was all about value.
As a certified pre-owned vehicle, our Lexus arrived already a year old and with just under 7,000 miles on the odometer. Though those stats are gentle by any stretch -- and especially for a Lexus -- it equated to a vehicle whose initial hit in depreciation had already been taken by someone else. In numbers, the KBB Fair Market Range for this model at the time of possession was between $39,000 and $42,500 -- up to about $10,000 less than the original Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price of $48,725.
Upon leaving about half a year later and with over 14,000 miles on its odometer, the KBB Fair Market Range was roughly $36,000 to $41,000. Percentage-wise that's a drop of only 4 to 8 percent from the time we got it. So in true Lexus fashion, our pre-owned IS 350 held its value well.
Taken as a whole on the front and back ends, it also proves the financial perks of buying a CPO vehicle, especially one such as a Lexus IS that is a routine Best Resale Value Award winner. In this example, it arrived in near-new condition for significantly less than an equivalent brand new model, yet continued to hold its value down the road. No matter how you slice it, we'd call choosing such a CPO Lexus a winning proposition.
See Past Reports for our Long-Term 2015 Lexus IS…