LEXUS WIDENS THE APPEAL OF THE IS RANGE
Exciting 233kW IS 350 introduces additional dynamism and performance, while IS 250 E brings the range within reach of an even wider audience
With the launch of the powerful 233kW IS 350, Lexus has taken the opportunity to widen the IS range to offer the Lexus-experience to a larger audience in the premium sedan market.
The new range-topping IS 350 SE typifies the Lexus approach to ‘optional is standard’, while the introduction of an E-grade level and more streamlined approach to IS 250 models now offers an attractive luxury opportunity at a lower entry-point and across a broader section of the small premium segment.
The new IS line-up has been introduced in step with the launch of the IS 350. It follows comprehensive market research into the needs of customers in this segment and includes the introduction of more flexible vehicle assistance packages.
The changes to the Lexus IS line-up means that the IS 250 S falls away in favour of the IS 250 E that now starts the four-model IS sedan range at R368 900. Despite its attractive entry-price the IS250 E still features full leather trim, eight-way electrically adjustable seats with lumbar support and smart entry and start, which remains a convenient feature where the key can stay firmly in your pocket or bag at all times.
The IS 250 E further features a Lexus Premium Sound System with MP3 compatible six-disc CD changer, dual automatic climate control and Bluetooth mobile phone connectivity.
Moving on from the E-grade customers can opt for the EX-grade in the choice of 2.5 or 3.5 litre V6 engines. Over and above the IS 250 E features spec, IS 250 EX and IS 350 EX models boast with the addition of cruise control, a hard-disk based navigation system with voice command that comes with a seven-inch colour EMV display.
The colour monitor allows a reverse camera with back guide monitor that assists parking tremendously, as does the standard fitment of Park Distance Control. EX owners will further benefit from an upgraded Lexus Premium Sound system with 13 speakers.
Both EX grade IS models run on 17-inch alloy wheels, but while the IS 250 EX features halogen headlamps, the IS 350 EX models are differentiated by LED Daytime Running Lights with High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlights with automatic levelling. All IS models continue to offer automatic headlamp control.
The IS 350 SE is easily spotted by its 18-inch alloy wheels. The interior features semi-aniline leather and wood trim as opposed to the piano black finish in other IS sedans. Seat heaters and coolers are offered for driver and front seat passenger and the driver’s seat enjoys a memory function.
Steering wheel adjustment becomes electric, complete with an easy access system that retracts the steering wheel away when the car is turned off. Interior and exterior mirrors feature automatic dimming and a moonroof and electric rear windscreen blind are standard. An illuminated entry system works in conjunction with the keyless-go to light up the IS 350 SE when approaching the car.
Lexus’ refined 2.5-litre V6 remains unchanged in the IS 250, developing 153kW and 252Nm driving the rear wheels through a six-speed electronically controlled automatic gearbox with paddle shift: The efficient powertrain returns just 9.8 l/100km on the combined cycle. The IS 350 offers 233kW of class-leading power, making the excellent IS chassis not only a comfortable executive sedan, but now also an exciting and dynamic sports sedan package. The IS 350 sprints to 100km/h in just 5.6 seconds.
All IS models feature the same comprehensive safety specification. Eight airbags are offered as standard, including knee bags for driver and front-seat passenger. Vehicle Stability Control, ABS and EBD, along with Brake Assist and Dynamic Traction Control are all managed holistically by Lexus’ Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management System (VDIM).
The IS range also includes the staggering 311kW IS-F and popular IS 250 C, which features the fastest folding hardtop in its class.
All Lexus IS models are covered by a four years/100 000km manufacturer’s warranty. The IS 250 E is supported a four years/100 000km Distance Plan, while EX models feature a four years/100 000km Distance Plan Plus, and SE models are backed by a four years/100 000km Distance Plan Complete.
Lexus IS range prices (incl. VAT and Emissions Tax)
IS 250 E R368 900
IS 250 EX R446 200
IS 350 EX R499 700
IS 350 SE R548 600
IS 250 C R578 500
IS-F R808 800