Subtle styling updates arrive on popular model
With the popularity of the current car exceeding (sales) expectations, Lexus says it “has kept the essence” of its current styling and has enhanced the look with new key pieces including a new front fascia with a revised version of the automaker’s spindle grille and larger air intakes and a set of redesigned headlights. F Sport models feature a three-dimensional F-mesh pattern grille insert finished in a black metallic coating, and functional brake ducts.
Lexus says the new front bumper gives the IS sedan a more aggressive look. The bumper is said to “fold back” at a higher point to visually lower the car and create sportier feel. Other front end changes include a reshaped hood to blend with the new front fascia.
Along the side, the refreshed Lexus IS sports a sharper shoulder line. A set of 10-spoke, 17-inch alloy wheels with a bright machined finish is now standard. Around back, the new IS features more pronounced “L”-shaped LED taillights and rectangular chrome exhaust tips. New exterior paint options include Deep Blue Mica and Graphite Black Glass Flake.
Inside, a 10.3-inch infotainment screen replaces the current car’s 7.0-inch screen. The automaker also added “Enter” buttons to the side of the center console-mounted Remote Touch Interface (RTI). Center stack audio and climate control switches have also been revised, while a new finish is said to offer a higher-quality feel and look.
Other interior changes include new stitching on top of the instrument cluster hood and revised instrument cluster gauges. The previous Moonstone and Ivory interior combo has been replaced by Chateau (blend of Ivory and light-gray). The IS also gets revised cup holders, larger leather-wrapped palm rest with stitching on the RTI and revised clock face.
The revised powertrain options introduced for 2016 carry over and include a base turbocharged 2.0-liter I-4 with 241 hp and 258 lb-ft for the IS200t, a 3.5-liter V-6 with 255 hp and 236 lb-ft for the IS300 AWD, and a 3.5-liter V-6 with 306 hp and 277 lb-ft in the IS350. Rear-drive models are backed by an eight-speed automatic, while the all-wheel-drive variant uses a six-speed automatic transmission.
New safety tech includes the Lexus Safety System + featuring Pre-Collision System, Lane Departure Alert (LDA) with Steering Assist, Automatic High Beam (AHB), and Radar Cruise Control.