- Gets sharper, sportier styling and updated cabin
- Engine options remain unchanged
After just two teasers, Lexus has dropped the veil on the new and updated IS. The luxury sports sedan now gets sharper styling with a revamped interior. Under the skin, there’s reworked suspension too, but the powertrain options have been carried over from the outgoing model.
Appearance-wise, the new IS is much more chiselled, sporty and good looking with Lexus’ large Spindle grille upfront. Flanking that meshed grille (blacked out in F trim) are sharper-looking headlamps with a new day-time-running light. It looks beefed up from some angles, especially when you look at the new sheet metal work before the rear wheel arches.
The tail gets reworked lamps which not join in the middle. And that’s the least interesting part of the new Lexus IS’ posterior. We also love the gorgeous 19-inch BBS wheels which do justice to the drama of this Japanese sedan. Overall, the 2021 IS is a looker, no matter what angle you see it from.
Contrary to earlier reports, the new IS hasn’t shifted to Toyota’s TNGA platform. But it does get a revamped cabin. There’s a new floating wide-screen display atop the dashboard and a slightly reworked centre console. There are a variety of upholstery options along with a long list of features. There’s also a 17-speaker Mark Levinson sound system with 1,800 watts and 7.1 surround sound along with new-age connectivity features. A new range of safety equipment is also part of the update.
In terms of powertrain, the trusted-old 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder is present in IS 300 making 240bhp and is RWD only. But the IS 300 can also be had in all-wheel-drive configuration with a 3.5-litre V6 putting out 260bhp. If that’s not enough, the IS 350 is available with 310bhp in both RWD and AWD guise. The former can do 0-100kmph in 5.6 seconds (5.7 seconds for AWD). It comes mated to an eight-speed automatic as standard.
Pricing for the new 2021 Lexus IS is yet to be revealed. Meanwhile, the sales will commence before the end of this year. It continues to rival the likes of BMW 3 Series, Audi A4 and Mercedes-Benz C-Class.