New Lexus IS revealed

15 Jan, 2013 3:46pm Tom Phillips

Full details and pictures of the all-new Lexus IS, following its public debut at the Detroit Motor Show

The all-new Lexus IS has been unveiled at the Detroit Motor Show. The third generation of Lexus’ BMW 3 Series, Mercedes C-Class and Audi A4 rival will go on sale in the UK in June.

We’ve already driven the V6 petrol-powered IS 250 in prototype form, and the new IS 300h hybrid, which replaces the diesel in the current line-up and promises sub-100g/km emissions.. But this is the first time that we’ve been able to see the new car’s design.

The new IS is clearly inspired by the Lexus LF-CC concept, which was shown at the Paris Motor Show last year. The IS features the new Lexus spindle front grille that has become a design hallmark that adorns all new Lexus models, flanked by a pair of aggressive headlights.

The lamp design is distinctive, as the arrow-shaped daytime running light looks like it’s part of the main headlight cluster, but is actually a separate unit.

In profile, the new IS is considerably more dramatic than its predecessor, with the cabin pushed back, relative to where it is now. Combined with the sweeping crease which runs up from the sill into the tail-lights, this makes the IS look much more dynamic.

Inside, the Lexus IS features similar design themes to the smaller CT 200h, including a horizontal bar incorporating the heater vents running across the dash, a wide centre console and a sports steering wheel.

The IS also gets Lexus’ part-digital, part-analogue dials, like the LFA supercar. Push a menu button and the central speedo slides to the right, revealing the selected menu in a small TFT screen.

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Superb, great looking car. This new IS is absolutely a head turner and a bold move forward for Lexus. Hopefully with sub 100 gr/km emissions.

I read somewhere else that the new Lexus IS may introduce a zero VED model. That's something to look forward to.
However it may only be a publicity stunt. I read similar things about the new Toyota RAV4 having a hybrid model.

This is very bold for Lexus. I thought it looked a bit crap at first but the more I see it, the more I like it. Looks more interesting than the 3 series or A4 but guaranteed AE will report 'it doesn't drive, ride or handle as well and interior perceived quality can't match the best in class'

Anyone have anything else to add to the pre-release review predictions?

The new Rav4 will have a Lexus SUV model as well, this Lexus model will receive a hybrid engine adapted from the (I guess) CT 200H or this new IS.

We must not take AE to serious, it has nothing to do with objective journalism, this magazine is rubbish as well as Autoweek in the Netherlands and Autobild in Germany (they all work together) and are 'sponsered' by VAG. Toyota/Lexus will never make any chance.
They have written horrible about the new Toyota Auris and they plugged the new Golf as if the car was reinvented.
The best solution?
Go and have a look at the Toyota dealer and VW dealer, test drive both cars yourself. Than you can see how wrong AE is with their reviews.
AE will give Lexus the same treatment as Toyota, no doubt.
We know better.

Lexus IS' styling is boyishly bold. Its provoking. It dares you to live a little. If Lexus can slip the hybrid variant under 100g/km this car will definitely attract company buyers particularly those suffering from mid-life crises.

On the practical side. Its a Lexus. So nothing would go wrong! Ever!! You would get the most cossetting customer service on planet earth. It would pack more toys then you would ever have time to discover.

Humour aside it will be crucial for Lexus to bring one model under the magic 100g mark. That would give it a lead over cars from BMW, Mercedes and Mazda. The best their diesels muster is VED Band B. Audi is Band C.

The IS300H should produce 200bhp from it's petrol/electric engine, and only emit 99g/km of CO2. If these turn out to be true and if the price is right, I'm certainly in for the IS!

I think this looks fantastic. Its bolder looking than I thought it would be. Not really bothered about a model coming in under 100g/km. Ultra low emissions and amazing fuel economy are not top of my list when buying cars. Looks, performance and reliability are what I would be looking for and my money would be on the above model over its rivals.

Nice looking car in & out & about time to iam getting sick ov german cars only everwhere it's just a shame about the petrol hybrid engines only because i don't believe in the co2 emissions anyway i think it's all just a scam & i don't believe in the mpg figure claims eather, The sad thing is there are no Diesel engines thats a big loss of sales for Lexus why would they do this it makes me think they have a gentlemens agreement with the germans to only produce petrol hybrids so not to take sales from the german diesel models & in return the germans won't produce petrol hybrids at least not for a few years at least, Strange I think Lexus Should Must to Increase Sales Make a Diesel Engine A 2.0.TDI With 2 Outputs 140 Bhp & 180 Bhp At Least With a 6 Speed Manual & A 7 or 8 Speed Double Clutch Auto They Would Sell Like Hot Cakes & Everyone Knows It.

I like the new Lexus IS and is now one of my favourite Excutive Cars

Dropping the diesel engine equals to dropping the ball in Europe

As a Lexus IS owner I am looking forward to seeing the new IS in a showroom soon.

I take motoring journalists' opinions with a grain of salt!
Reviews are one individual's view about a car or make, be it good or bad.

My previous car was a BMW 3 series and from my own experience the Lexus IS is a better all round car.
It may not be as sporty to drive as the BMW but there is no body roll when pushed. It is more comfortable and far better equipped. And you get a lot more for your money.
The Lexus is better built and is more reliable than the BMW and has a superior after sales service.

Lexus provides an alternative to Audi, BMW, and MB and should be consider on its merits not on a single individual or magazine's opinion.

Sorry but for me that front end is convoluted and contrived. It's obviously gunning for a dramatic, bold effect but without being substantiated by an underlying design aesthetic. It's setting out to be 'bold' for no other reason than to arrest attention and/or provoke, thus it doesn't come across as an elegant, coherent design to my eyes.

Sorry Lexus, but this is a fail.

A bit of a strange rant??? Toyota cars overall are well...bland and do not drive as well as many of the VAG cars. Toyota have shown us what they can do though with the GT86, give the rest of the range some of its DNA and they may be able to complete. For now Toyota is becoming more and more a grey pound brand. Sadly you will find most magazines, haveI not been kind to the Auris VW and the Golf MK7 have moved things on again. Even the A3 and Leon on paper look a better buy than the new Auris. Toyota is good but not good enough and as I said at the start...bland.

Yeah right, that's the reason Toyota/Lexus are the number one in sales (Toyota) and the number one in customer satisfaction (Toyota and Lexus).

Do the rear seats fold down in the new model?

With the C post, novel lights, chrono-style instrumentation, I think this IS has recaptured some of the dynamism of the original and may appeal to a younger market again. The premium German brands seem very tired and out of ideas IMO.
Lexus tried diesel but I guess a canal boat engine didn't fit with their brand identity :J Although I guess the hybrid will be too expensive to make a significant impact.

Agree with your comments. It may well attract younger buyers to the brand yet I'm wondering what the 'old Lexus faithfull' will make of this new model?

sorry. but i find cars like the audi a4, a6, a8...VAG be horribly bland...

Strange Lexus have decided to ditch the diesel, in all respect it is much better than the hybrid synergy nonsense which is installed in all Lexus models. I grove a rental Prius in LA, good for city commuting, rubish everywhere else.

Lexus is hard to beat when it comes to just about everything - very smooth well built and thoroughly good motor cars. Something in definably superior about the way all Toyota brands drive and behave it is no mystery as to why they are the world leader.