While the Lexus IS has a plush interior and a relaxed driving manner, it lacks the sporty feel of some cars in this segment. Also, the interior is quite snug. Inside are high-quality materials, a hushed cabin, and a refined-sounding engine. Acceleration is quick, and fuel economy is commendable. However, the ride is stiff and the steering lacks feedback.
Alerts
There are 9 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Road Test Results

Performance
Acceleration Acceleration Acceleration tests are conducted on a smooth, flat pavement straightaway at the track. Time, speed, and distance measurements are taken with a precise GPS-based device that’s hooked to a data-logging computer.
0 to 60 mph 0 to 60 mph (sec.) The time in seconds that a vehicle takes to reach 60 mph from a standstill with the engine idling.
Transmission Transmission Transmission performance is determined by shifting smoothness, response, shifter action, and clutch actuation for manual transmissions.
Braking Braking The braking rating is a composite of wet and dry stopping distances and pedal feel. Braking distance is from 60 mph, with no wheels locked.
Emergency Handling Emergency Handling Several factors go into the rating, including the avoidance maneuver speed and confidence, as well as how the vehicle behaves when pushed to its limit.
Comfort / Convenience
Ride Ride Our expert judgment of how well the suspension isolates and absorbs road imperfections and how steady it keeps the body on various road surfaces.
Noise Noise Our expert judgment of the vehicle's interior noise level in everyday driving.
Front Seat Comfort Front Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the front seat is for drivers of various heights.
Rear Seat Comfort Rear Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the rear seat is for two passengers to sit across.
Interior Fit and Finish Interior Fit and Finish An expert evaluation of the interior quality and craftsmanship.
Trunk/Cargo Area Trunk/Cargo Area Our rating is based on the amount of luggage or cargo space that a vehicle has in the trunk or cargo area.
Fuel Economy & Emissions
Fuel Economy Fuel Economy We perform our own fuel-economy tests, independent of the government's often-quoted EPA figures and the manufacturers' claims. Using a precise fuel-flow measuring device spliced into the fuel line, we run two separate circuits to represent city and highway consumption.
CR's Overall Mileage CR's Overall Mileage CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course and highway cruising; and CR's 150-mile test trip of mixed driving, if tested. In recent road tests, we've discontinued the 150-mile trip test.
CR's City Mileage CR's City Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course.
CR's Highway Mileage CR's Highway Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed highway cruising.
Annual Fuel Cost Annual Fuel Cost The cost and amount of fuel used in 12,000 miles and is calculated from CR's overall mileage.
Greenhouse Gas Greenhouse Gas The Greenhouse Gas Rating represents the amount of carbon dioxide the vehicle emits compared to other vehicles of the same model year. This score from the EPA ranges from 1 (worst) to 10 (best).
Smog Rating Smog Rating The Smog Rating represents the amount of health-damaging and smog-forming airborne pollutants the vehicle emits compared to other vehicles of the same model year. This score from the EPA ranges from 1 (worst) to 10 (best).

Owner Reports

Worse Better
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. The results are presented relative to the average model that year. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. Based on this data and further analysis, we predict reliability for the latest year. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
2001
NA
2002
NA
2003
NA
2004
NA
2005
NA
2006
NA
2007
NA
2008
2009
NA
2010
2011
NA
2012
2013
NA
2014
2015
2016
NA
2017
NA
2018
NA
2019
NA
2020
NA
Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
NA
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
NA
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
NA
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
NA
Transmission Minor Transmission Minor Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.
NA
Drive System Drive System Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.
NA
Owner Satisfaction Owner Satisfaction To learn about satisfaction, CR has collected survey data from our annual survey on more than half a million vehicles. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? In addition, respondents also rate their cars in six categories: driving experience, comfort, value, styling, audio, and climate systems. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
2001
NA
2002
NA
2003
NA
2004
NA
2005
NA
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
NA
2019
NA
2020
NA
Driving Experience Driving Experience Includes acceleration and handling
NA
Comfort Comfort Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride
NA
Value Value Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?
NA
Styling Styling How it looks inside and out
NA
Safety Equipment
ABS and side air bags standard. Head protection air bags standard from 2002. ESC available from 2002, standard from 2006.
Road Test

While the Lexus IS has a plush interior and a relaxed driving manner, it lacks the sporty feel of some cars in this segment. Also, the interior is quite snug. Inside are high-quality materials, a hushed cabin, and a refined-sounding engine. Acceleration is quick, and fuel economy is commendable. However, the ride is stiff and the steering lacks feedback.

Seating
2 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
AWD , Rear
Warranty
Coverage varies among versions of this vehicle

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
convertible
sedan
Transmissions Available
  • 8-speed Automatic
  • 6-speed Automatic
  • 6-speed Manual
Engines Available
  • 2.5-liter V6 (204 hp)
  • 3.5-liter V6 (306 hp)
  • 5-liter V8 (416 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2010 Lexus IS owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Squeaks or rattles

"Since new, hard to convertible rattles incessantly when up"

Anonymous, CA (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"Hard top roof developed loud rattle when top was closed"

Richard L., NJ (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"Car squeaks and rattles like a 50 year old car"

Gregory S., PA (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"This vehicle has a lot of squeak and rattling which drives me nuts. I won't even ride in it because I don't want to put up with them"

Chad T., FL (2010 Lexus IS 350 3.5-L V6)

"Convertible top has rattles on rough roads when it is up. No noise when it is down. Dealer did a Toyota Service Order repair that was good for about six months. Same issue is back again"

Anonymous, CA (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"Vehicle has had a constant rattle in the driver side air vent (louver). Have had it in for service several times and the dealer has never been able to repair. Not something you would expect in a entry level luxury car"

Albert F., AZ (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"squeaks have been addresses by the dealer previously but now has returned"

Anonymous, CA (2010 Lexus IS 350 3.5-L V6)

"Both doors Dashboard"

James M., MA (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"roof fit issue"

Anonymous, VA (2010 Lexus IS 350 3.5-L V6)

"It's a convertible so it's not uncommon. But I expect a lot better from Lexus. This thing can be a bucket of bolts if we don't work to minimize the moving parts."

David C., CA (2010 Lexus IS 350.0 3.5-L V6)

"Car interior has squeaks that are numerous."

Gregory S., PA (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)

"Hardtop convertible roof rattles terribly when the top is up. Started this after 6 months of ownership. Fixed once by the dealer (2 days) but in 6 months it was doing it again. Toyota Service Order is out there but didn't result in a permanent fix."

Anonymous, CA (2010 Lexus IS 2.5-L V6)

"I just bought this from my step son and the top creaks and groans constantly when the top is up. This is very annoying."

Anonymous, CA (2010 Lexus IS 2.5-L V6)

"Car has noticeable squeaks that are coming from the dash."

Anonymous, PA (2010 Lexus IS 2.5-L V6)

"Door rattles"

Anonymous, CA (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 3.5-L V6)

"Inside dash and windows squeak like a 1976 Cadillac."

Gregory S., PA (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)

"The sunroof rattles and wind noise gets through the roof itself. The dealer had looked at the problem and informed us that the sunroof rails and sliding mechanism were loose and needed to be replaced. This was an expensive proposition and since the roof does not leak, we decided against spending the money to fix the issue."

Anonymous, NJ (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)
Wind noise

"Has a great deal of road noise in general, including wind"

Fred W., WA (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"Wind noise at higher speeds"

Ronald S., AZ (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

Backup or other camera/sensors

"Intermittent display, sometimes black, sometimes doesn't engage at all. Restarting the car usually fixes it but not always"

Stephen K., CA (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)
CD player

"CD was stop playing and eject. Known problem covered under warrenty"

Roger W., MD (2010 Lexus IS 250 3.5-L V6)
In-dash navigation system (GPS)

"It would wander off road like the sat link was lost. It would then lose info like turn or destination distance"

Errol E., FL (2010 Lexus IS 350 3.5-L V6)
Phone pairing (e.g., Bluetooth)

"Have to re-pair phone with car frequently"

Thomas D., ON (2010 Lexus IS 250 3.5-L V6)
Radio

"Controls freeze and have no effect. At other times the AM station changes on its own"

Stephen K., CA (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"Radio stopped working and cost $800 to replace"

Joan S., AL (2010 Lexus IS 350 3.5-L V6)
Steering wheel controls

"Broken spiral cable"

Anonymous, CA (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)
Voice control commands

"it often does not understand"

Linda B., FL (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"Fails to reconize correct voice commands regardless of who is driving"

Thomas D., ON (2010 Lexus IS 250 3.5-L V6)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Exhaust leaks

"Pipe leading from exhaust manifold perforated. This was thought to be due to corrosion. Since the pipe was permanently affixed to the catalytic converter, the converter was also replaced. This $2700 repair was deemed not covered by the catalytic converter warranty, since the pipe and not the converter failed. Poor design, if you ask me"

John G., NY (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"Hole in the pipe connecting two catalytic converters. Dealer wanted to replace pipe and both converters. Local shop cut out and replaced just the pipe for 1/10th of what dealer asked"

Shane J., MA (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)
Other/unsure

"Warning light for passenger is on...was told whole seat needed to be replaced at approximately $1,500..."

Anonymous, MA (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)
Pipes

"Exhaust pipe split slightly and needed to be welded"

Roger D., CT (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"Cover on exhaust pipe caused rust damaged that had to be repaired."

Gregory S., PA (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling)

"Lower front bumper"

James M., MA (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"New Car Lexus dealer sold a "certified" car that had been repainted without telling the customer and the paint job was NOT covered under any warranty (Lexus original or extended) and failed horribly after only 18 months"

Henry K., TN (2010 Lexus IS 250 3.5-L V6)

"shocking poor paint job. very easy to scratch paint. poor seals on side mirrors cause paint to chalk under mirrors and down the side door with normal water/salt/detergent draining"

Anonymous, ON (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"Since obtaining the vehicle I have had the car detailed once every 15 months and have used detailing liquid when completing a wash of the car myself. In 2018 I noticed some minute spidering of the paint on the top deck of the rear trunk and the very top of the vehicle. I asked around no one could tell me what it was. Then it worsen to the point I was told by the dealer that it was the clear coat degrading and I needed to repaint. I have had Fords and CHEVROLETs for many years past the age of this car (with less care) and never had this happen."

Anonymous, CA (2010 Lexus IS 3.5-L V6)

"The paint is failing on the front fascia or valance of the vehicle. The black paint is chipped away exposing the primer underneath."

Anonymous, NJ (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Fuel gauge/sender

"some had a fuel leak. Mine did not"

Elbert P., IL (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"recall"

Anonymous, CA (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)
Fuel injection system

"Recall - Replace fuel rail pressure regulator gasket"

Anonymous, TX (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"it was recalled for something to do with fuel"

Linda B., FL (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Mirrors

"The fluid inside the mirrors keeps leaking out and staining the car. Lexus dealer has ignored his issue all the time"

Anonymous, QC (2010 Lexus IS 2.5-L V6)

"The mount broke, causing the mirror to not function properly"

Derek M., CA (2010 Lexus IS 350 3.5-L V6)

"The drivers side exterior mirror came loose from the post due to a spring ring with insufficient clamping force, there is at least one YouTube video demonstrating how to repair this yourself with several comments about dealer repairs running to several hundred dollars."

Brian T., TN (2010 Lexus IS 350.0 3.5-L V6)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Calipers

"Right rear caliper seized and had to be replaced"

Gregory S., PA (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"Rear calipers on both sides stuck. Replaced with remanufactrured aftermarket parts"

Shane J., MA (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)
Rotors

"wrong ones installed"

Scott S., CA (2010 Lexus IS 350 3.5-L V6)

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

What Owners Say

Alternator

"Car started at beginning of trip with no problems. When I tried to restart it 60 minutes later, there was no power at all. Turned out to be an alternator needed to be replaced."

Anonymous, TX (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)
Battery (not hybrid or electric)

"Because of alternator problem, the battery was damaged and had to be replaced in addition to the alternator."

Anonymous, TX (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)
Spark plugs or wires failure

"Engine would fail while driving"

Anonymous, PR (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Engine computer

"Loss of power, was able to limp to a Toyota dealer for service. Computer was replaced."

Robert G., CA (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)
Fuel leaks

"there was a 'recall', so we brought it in. we didn't have the specific problem"

Anonymous, MN (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)
Oil leaks

"Two engine oil leaks in the past 2 years. One was under warranty, the other cost over $600 to repair"

Albert F., AZ (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Shocks or struts

"Front struts failed during normal operation 1 year after purchase"

Anonymous, PA (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)

"Rear shocks leaking and were replaced under warranty. Did a 4 wheel alignment. Drives like new."

Anonymous, TX (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

What Owners Say

Engine rebuild or replacement

"total engine failure at 105,000 kms. Had quotes from two Lexus dealers and two Toyota dealers. Comments from all service managers was that this was very unusual and there were no indications of why the engine failed relatively early. No warning lights, no heat issues, nothing appeared to give any reason why the engine totally seized."

Anonymous, AB (2010 Lexus IS 350.0 3.5-L V6)
Head gasket

"Had to replace head gasket and clean entire engine after 50K miles because of carbon build up. Common to this model and covered under warranty"

Henry K., TN (2010 Lexus IS 250 3.5-L V6)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Driveshaft or axle

"Discovered a seal leak"

Anonymous, TX (2010 Lexus IS 2.5-L V6)
Electrical failure

"Engine computer failed, managed to limp 2 miles to dealer"

Anonymous, CA (2010 Lexus IS 2.5-L V6)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Headlights

"headlights need to be replaced burned out 250.00 to replace"

Philip A., SC (2010 Lexus IS 250 2.5-L V6)
Warning lights

"Positraction light on along with check engine light"

Eugenia F., AZ (2010 Lexus IS 250.0 2.5-L V6)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

What Owners Say

Radiator

"total failure and replaced rad. Had split that could not be repaired at 75,000 kms."

Anonymous, AB (2010 Lexus IS 350.0 3.5-L V6)

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

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