- Brings in the naturally aspirated 5.0-litre V8
- Will head out to North American markets first
Lexus has spruced up the updated IS line-up with the introduction of the powerful F Sport variant. Called the ‘IS 500 F Sport Performance’ the four-door sedan also debuts the ‘F Sport Performance’ model line that is not a full-fledged F model, but powerful enough with matching looks to go with it.
The F Sport Performance line-up is much like the Hyundai’s N-Line or BMW’s M Power models and should adorn many more Lexus models in the years to come. As for the IS500, the new-gen model is plonked with Lexus’ famous 5.0-litre V8 that puts out 472bhp and a whopping 535Nm of twisting force. It’s paired to an eight-speed automatic. In terms of performance, it can hit 0-100kmph in just 4.5 seconds.
Despite the bigger engine, the IS500 weighs 1,765 kilograms, just 64.86 kilograms more than the standard IS350 F Sport. Developed at Toyota Technical Center Shimoyama, the IS gets fancy hardware like RWD F Sport's Dynamic Handling Package (DHP) with adaptive variable suspension (AVS) and a Torsen limited-slip differential as standard. Engineers have also improved the IS chassis with the addition of a Yamaha rear performance damper thus reducing structural distortion and increasing low-speed ride and high-speed agility. Brake upgrades include aerodynamic cooling and larger 14.0-inch two-piece aluminium front rotors and 12.7-inch rear rotors.
As for the appearance, the IS500 F Sport Performance can be differentiated through its bumped and sculpted hood, larger front fenders (to fit in the bigger V8), 19-inch 10-spoke Enkei alloy wheels, and lower rear diffusers with iconic quad exhaust tips. There’s also dark chrome window trim and a blacked-out rear lip spoiler to go the meaner demeanour.
On the inside, there’s heated leather-wrapped steering, F Sport-specific pedals, and F Sport Performance badging all around. There’s also Lexus’ Safety System Plus 2.5 integrated for enhanced safety.
Pricing of the Lexus IS500 F Sport Performance will be revealed closer to its market launch later this year along with its exterior and interior colour options. It will first go on sale in the American markets before heading out for Europe and Japan. Lexus India has no plans of introducing the IS sedan in the country anytime soon, but if the Japanese carmaker decides to bring the model to our shore, we could expect the IS500 F Sport Performance to be a part of it.