Lexus IS

Base MSRP price range:
$36,550 - $47,640
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Ratings Category: Luxury compact cars
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Lexus IS Overview

The IS fails as a sports sedan. Though the 250's small V6 is refined, its 21-mpg overall is unreasonably thirsty and performance is pokey. The IS 350 is punchier but underwhelming to drive. Handling is secure but not engaging enough to run with true sports sedans. Ride comfort is neither tied down nor plush. Even by the class's minimal standards, the IS interior is extremely cramped. Getting into and out is an ungraceful chore. Fit and finish is OK but not a standout. Controls use a mouselike controller, which takes too much attention away from driving. AWD is optional. Reliability of the 3.5-liter is well above average; the 2.5-liter is average, but it scores too low to be recommended.

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