Pegnitz, 13. June 2008 – the lexus is does not at all correspond to the image that the japanese noble brand usually presents: consistently sporty, it once again tries to catch up with the bmw 3 series. 423 hp provide for propulsion, engineers of the motorcycle manufacturer yamaha helped with the modification. Does the sports sedan have a chance in germany??
Cut to size
The lexus is-f can’t deny its base, the is sedan. However, it looks much more aggressive from the sheet metal and flaunts a power dome that runs across the entire hood. On the sides, the dark 19-inch alloy wheels in bbs design stand out. Their ten spokes are shaped like propeller blades, which transport cool air to the brakes and warm air away again. The two twin tailpipes protrude from the rear in an unusual arrangement: the oval ends are offset diagonally above one another. After all, this design seems to be setting a precedent: in the new ferrari california, the exhaust gas is disposed of in a similar way.
Where is the button?
We take a seat on the standard leather chair and find it quite hard. After a few minutes of driving we have to admit that the seats are comfortable and do well on longer journeys. The side bolsters keep the body in position even when cornering well, but we look in vain for a button to adjust the bolsters individually as in the bmw m3. For a car from tech-loving japan, we expected this, and we’ll be missing more buttons as the test progresses.
Reaching for the steering wheel of the is-f is like reaching into a void for the first few centimeters – that’s how dunn the leathered valance is. That might suit english luxury cars à la bentley and rolls-royce, but not a genuine sports car. Levers and knobs are in the right position and everything looks impeccably finished. The surfaces are scratch-resistant and make an unspectacular impression – quite in contrast to the instruments: the deep blue of the hands on the tachometer and speedometer is unique. The rear seat is also comfortable, but only for small people. Knee room is comparable to the m3 coupe, headroom is surprisingly better in the bavarian coupe. The japanese also have a funny style element: when you look in the rearview mirror, the third brake light with its massive support system above the parcel shelf catches your eye.