2015 Lexus IS 250, IS 350: What's Changed

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Most significant changes: Siri Eyes Free voice recognition for iPhones now standard

Price change: $450 higher across the board for sedans

On sale: August

Which you should buy, 2014 or 2015? 2014

The IS 250 and IS 350 sedans were redesigned for 2014 with a racier look and improved handling, so they get few changes for their second season. In addition to Siri Eyes Free, LED fog lamps are standard on base models. A heated steering wheel is now a stand-alone option and part of the Luxury and F Sport packages for all-wheel-drive models, and heated/ventilated seats are added to the F Sport Package. The Lexus Enform apps suite adds Slacker radio.

2014 Lexus IS Expert Review

The 250C and 350C convertibles carry over for the second year in a row on the previous design for the IS.

By Rick Popely | July 9, 2014 | Comments (1)

2014 Lexus IS 350 F Sport: Car Seat Check

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Sometimes parents have to choose between fast and stylish and roomy and comfortable. The Lexus IS with the F Sport Package is the perfect example. The compact sedan is powerful and stunning, but a cramped backseat made it tough to install child safety seats. Excellent Latch anchor exposure was a nice bonus during our tests, however.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

By Jennifer Geiger | November 5, 2013 | Comments (0)

Lexus RC Coupe Concept at the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show

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Looks like: A two-door version of the redesigned IS

Defining characteristics: Fog lights incorporated into the grille, LFA tail elements

Ridiculous features: Few, unless you count the name

Chance of being mass-produced: Confirmed by Lexus

Sorry, parents. Lexus' new RC coupe is not, in fact, a $40 Christmas gift with four AA batteries' worth of linoleum-racing glee. It's the latest concept from Toyota's luxury division, which released images and details ahead of the car's 2013 Tokyo Motor Show debut the morning of Nov. 20 (in Tokyo, which is still Nov. 19 across the U.S.). The RC coupe concept appears production-ready, and all signs point toward it being a coupe sibling to the new IS sedan, but Lexus spokesman Bill Kwong said it bears closer relation to the larger GS. When the real thing shows up, you can be sure it will cost more than $40.

At least batteries are included — that is, the battery that feeds the electric motor in the 2.5-liter RC 300h hybrid. Lexus' potent 3.5-liter V-6, meanwhile, powers the RC 350. The brand says it hopes the car can "raise the brand's profile with a broader audience and new-to-Lexus customers."

By Kelsey Mays | November 4, 2013 | Comments (5)

2014 Lexus IS F-Sport: Tested

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We reviewed the all-new Lexus IS 250 and 350 earlier this year but recently had the IS 350 F-Sport in the office for a thorough test. Our editors weighed in on what they liked and were unabashed about what they didn't.

2014 Lexus IS Review

The looks of the Matador Red Mica tester were a high point. Here are other hits and misses from the Cars.com editorial staff.

By David Thomas | October 30, 2013 | Comments (1)

Recall Alert: 102,000 Lexus Vehicles

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Vehicles Affected: Approximately 102,000 model-year 2006-11 Lexus IS 350, IS 350C and GS 350 vehicles.

The Problem: Bolts used to secure the variable valve timing control device can become loose. This could cause the vehicle to stop while being driven. "Early warning for this condition can be an abnormal noise just after start-up," Toyota said in a statement.

The Fix: Dealers will inspect and replace the affected parts for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners will be notified via registered mail. They can also call 800-331-4331 or go to www.lexus.com/recall for more information.

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By Jennifer Geiger | September 4, 2013 | Comments (0)

July's Fastest- and Slowest-Selling Cars

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We'd like to think most auto executives drove to work this morning listening to The Cars' "Good Times Roll." June and July turned out the best seasonally adjusted auto sales since before the recession. In raw numbers, new-car sales saw the healthiest July since 2007.

The fastest sellers, unsurprisingly, were also some of the strongest. Recent redesigns of the 2014 Acura MDX (July sales up 29.5%), 2014 Lexus IS (sales up 58.6%) and 2014 Subaru Forester (sales up 52.5%) joined the updated 2014 Honda Odyssey (sales up 10.9%) among July's fastest-selling cars.

The 2014 Land Rover Range Rover topped the list, but the sybaritic SUV was redesigned a year ago. No matter: Each Rover stayed on dealer lots less than a week apiece, and July sales flew 111.3%.

Stranger still, the Audi Q5 has gone without a substantial redesign since it arrived in early 2009, yet it was the third fastest seller on the list — and it's been among the fastest-selling cars for nine of the past 10 months. Its Q7 sibling, meanwhile, has been on the roster for four straight months despite showing up in late 2006.

By Kelsey Mays | August 2, 2013 | Comments (1)

Mercedes-Benz Is Luxury Car Thieves' Most Wanted

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That Mercedes-Benz in your driveway might have turned the tables on the Joneses, who are now trying to keep up with you, but that envy doesn't end with your neighbors. According to a report released today by the National Insurance Crime Bureau, to steal a Mercedes-Benz is considered an honor among thieves. The German automaker's iconic three-pointed star adorns three of the top 10 most-stolen luxury models in the U.S., with the C-Class taking the No. 1 spot with 485 thefts from Jan. 1, 2009, through Dec. 31, 2012.

The Des Plaines, Ill.-based nonprofit's analysis divided the luxury-vehicle segment into three subclasses — compact, midsize and premium — with thefts across all three totaling 4,384 for the 2010-12 model years. The compact class accounted for the greatest portion of that total, with 2,150 thefts, followed by the midsize class' 1,734 thefts and the premium's 500. By state, the distribution of thefts largely correlates with population size: California lays claim to 1,063 of the total luxury thefts, the most, while South Dakota and Wyoming each had only one. By core-based statistical area, which includes a densely populated urban center and its surrounding areas, the New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island area had the largest number of luxury thefts at 806, followed by Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, Calif., with 491, and Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, Fla., with 452.

By Matt Schmitz | July 30, 2013 | Comments (5)

Lexus Gives IS the Instagram Treatment

Have you ever used the hip app Instagram to capture a shot of a cool car? Lexus ad director Jacob Rosenberg invited 212 users from across the country to make the first film using only Instagram photos.

Armed with mobile devices, participants were given a movie frame number and snapped away at Lexus's 2014 IS F Sport. Once all 360 frames were taken, participants applied filters to their photo, but cropping wasn't allowed. Does the redesigned IS look even more aggressive draped in a bit of Hefe or Sutro filters? You decide. All frames were then uploaded using the #LexusInstafilm and assigned frame number hashtags. The Instagram pics were then compiled and sequenced to make the film. Check out the video.

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By Robby DeGraff | July 19, 2013 | Comments (1)

2014 Lexus IS: Track Tested

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With the redesigned 2014 IS sport sedan, Lexus is trying hard to appeal to buyers intent on getting a compact luxury car that's not only luxurious and well put-together, but also fun to drive. So focused is Lexus on this goal that it's holding regional media drive events at racetracks around the country for journalists to sample the IS' current variations on closed road courses.

We already reviewed the new 2014 IS earlier this year at its launch in Austin, Texas, but we're not going to pass up the opportunity to drive sport sedans around a track. So I trekked out to the media gathering Lexus held at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Mich., a track familiar to NASCAR Sprint Cup fans as the home of the Pure Michigan 400 and other races.

The course laid out for us took us onto an infield road course before dumping the cars onto the front stretch of the oval track and then back into the infield course at the end of pit lane. It was a relatively simple course, but it provided a good opportunity to see just how well Lexus has tuned the new IS as an enthusiast's option.

By Aaron Bragman | May 10, 2013 | Comments (0)

Lexus Prices 2014 IS

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When the redesigned-for-2014 Lexus IS arrives at dealerships this summer, the luxury sedan will offer a number of newly standard features at a 2% discount from last year's price for IS 350 buyers, the automaker announced today. The rear-wheel-drive IS 250 will start at $36,845 and $39,380 for all-wheel drive; the IS 350 will start at $40,360 for rear-wheel drive and $42,595 for all-wheel drive (all prices include an $895 destination fee).

The IS 250 has a 2.5-liter V-6 good for 204 horsepower and 185 pounds-feet of torque, while the 350 has a 3.5-liter V-6 that produces 306 horsepower. Both the rear-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive versions of the 250 come with a six-speed automatic transmission, as does the all-wheel-drive 350; the rear-wheel-drive model gets an eight-speed automatic.

Standard features include high-intensity discharge headlights, L-shaped LED running lights, drive mode select, paddle shifters, dual-zone climate control, a new touch-screen multimedia system with 4.2-inch color display, 10 airbags, and real-time traffic and weather information without a subscription. Lexus said the previously optional equipment totals $1,400.

By Matt Schmitz | April 29, 2013 | Comments (0)

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