Dan Wiese of the St. Louis Post Dispatch shows us the new 2014 Lexus IS.
1.) IS is available in four versions: 250 rear-wheel drive, 250 all-wheel drive, 350 RWD, 350 AWD. We'll be showing the top-of-the-line 350 AWD.
2.) The 250 gets a 204-hp V-6 while the 350 gets a 306-hp V-6. Both engines are carried over, and all mate to a six-speed automatic except the 350 RWD, which gets an eight-speed automatic.
3.) This third-generation IS is a credible competitor in the compact sport sedan segment for the sainted BMW 3 Series. Who'da ever thought the cushy Lexus luxury brand would field such a performer. Zero-to-60 sprints in the 350 are in the mid 5's. That's about 2 seconds faster than the 250.
4.) The styling shows "The New Face of Lexus": an aggressive "spindle" grille.
5.) This new IS is 3.4 inches longer and a shade wider and taller than its predecessor. Combined with its 2.7-inch longer wheelbase, those dimensions create a roomier back seat.
6.) Our car has the optional F Sport Package, which adds stiffer spring rates and, among other things, a nifty motorized gauge display that has to be seen to be believed. It doesn't add a lot of information for the driver, but it's fun to operate.
7.) The IS F Sport is not to be confused with the IS F, a high-performance specialty sedan with a 416-hp V-8. That one competes with M models from BMW, V models from Cadillac and AMGs from Mercedes.