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|2014 Lexus IS 250 Review & Test Drive||
The all-new 2014 Lexus IS 250 points this important Lexus model in the right direction with a more dynamic driving experience, bold new aggressive design and LED lighting, a new interior design, a new multi-link rear suspension, and a new Drive Mode Selector. Taken as a whole, the all-new I S250 is more fun to drive sitting in a more comfortable and sporty cabin.
I said pointed up because the new style features sharp pointed arrow shapes up front and in the rear. First, the wheelbase has been increased by nearly three inches, the width by nearly half an inch giving the IS 250 a more aggressive stance. The new styling is a further evolution of the spindle grille from the new GS and LS models featuring a more three-dimensional design with a chrome-plated frame with black horizontal slates. HID headlamps feature separated LED daytime running lights that are arrow shaped. The lower bumper features a honeycomb air-intake, splitter, a spoiler with a flat underbody panel, foglamps and a working opening that channels air to cool the front brakes. The silhouette shows steeply raked windshield A-pillars, flared fenders, power-remote/heated sideview mirrors with LED signal repeater, newly designed lower side extensions that angle up to help with outside airflow, pull-out door handles, and a full-perimeter chrome strip around the greenhouse. The new rear fascia features LED lamp clusters that wraparound and point down, a chrome strip that attaches the two lamp clusters, a lip spoiler at the end of the trunk lid, a bold bumper with a black contrasting strip that ends at each side, dual chrome exhaust tips and a diffuser underneath to help with rear airflow. The look is sharp, taut and very athletic. The all-new body design cuts through the air with a slippery 0.28 co-efficient of drag enhancing fuel efficiency and less noise entering the cabin.
To give the all-new IS 250 more excitement to drive is the new construction techniques including laser screw welding, additional spot welding and adhesive body bonding help to provide a substantial increase in overall body rigidity. A new rear subframe and cowl side braces further help to enhance handling control and steering response. Also giving me a more responsive ride and handling capability is the all-new multi-link rear suspension, revised front suspension and electric-power-assisted rack & pinion steering system derived from the all-new GS sedan and adopted for the smaller IS 250.
IS 250 power is generated from a potent 2.5 liter, all-aluminum, DOHC, 24-valve V6 with Stoichiometric direct injection and variable valve timing with intelligence. It produces 204 horsepower at 6,400 rpm and 185 lb.ft. of torque at 4,800 rpm. This small but potent engine is mated to the reliable six-speed electronically controlled automatic with ECT-i including paddle shifters with rev matching downshifts in SPORT mode to add more fun and excitement to its driving dynamics. The new Drive Mode Selector system features four driving modes in the all-new IS 250. Mounted on the center of the console is a large dial with ECO, NORMAL, and SPORT modes. Just in front is a button for SNOW mode in AWD models. These drives modes are tailored to meet my preferred combination of economy, comfort, performance and handling characteristics. It gives the choice of how I want the car to respond and handle to my throttle and steering inputs.
The new rear suspension and revised front suspension makes driving the all-new IS 250 so much fun and pleasurable. Up front is a double-wishbone setup with high-mount upper arms, coil springs, gas-filled shocks and a stabilizer bar. This new revised front setup gives a 20% increase in sway rigidity and grip. The all-new rear is a multi-link setup with coil springs, gas-filled shocks and a stabilizer bar. Taken together the new suspension helps provide increased grip and control when tackling steeply curving roads. The new electric power steering system gave me a smoother, more accurate feel with greater feedback from the road. It is a great new combination that gives the car better handling with more response to all of my driving inputs.
The brakes are very powerful and linear when applied. Up front are 11.65 inch vented discs clamped with dual-piston calipers. The rear discs are 11.45 and solid with single-piston calipers. The braking system is further enhanced with standard ABS, EBD, BA, Vehicle Stability Control, Traction Control and the (VDIM) Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management system all working together to keep me in control during high-speed maneuvers and when braking on wet or slick pavement.
The all-new 2014 Lexus IS 250 that I tested came with the custom optional wheel and tire package. It includes 18X8 inch front and 18X8.5 inch rear 10-twin-spoke aluminum alloys with a liquid graphite finish. These beautiful sport wheels are wrapped with 225/40R18 inch front and 255/35R18 inch Bridgestone Turanza low-profile high-performance tires for excellent grip and a smooth ride.
The interior of the all-new IS 250 was inspired by the Lexus LFA supercar with its driver-focused cockpit. My test IS 250 came equipped with the Luxury Package that includes LED headlamps (low-high beam), rain-sensing wipers, auto-dimming exterior mirrors, leather-trimmed interior with high-quality soft-to-the touch materials, aluminum trim, genuine linear dark wood trim on the dashboard and door switch plates, heated/ventilated/rib-quilted front bucket seats with 10-way power adjustments with a driver-side power lumbar control, that is so very comfortable and supportive, leather-wrapped stick shifter, power tilt/telescopic/leather-wrapped steering wheel that feels perfect in my hands with audio controls, radar-sensing cruise control, and a trip computer controls that can be seen on the reconfigurable center screen between the rallye gauges with aluminum bezels. This package also gave the IS 250 extra safety with Blind Spot Monitor and Rear Cross Traffic alert. My new IS 250 came equipped with the 2nd– Generation Lexus Remote Touch Interface (RTI) multi-function control device which controls the navigation system, climate, audio, phone controls and more. It is like using a mouse to click on the desired icons to operate each system.
Standard features inside not mentioned above includes dual map lights, grab handles above each door, two-driver memory, express up/down for all windows, power door locks, Smart Access with push button start/stop, new haptic slide thermostats for the dual climate control system, dual lighted vanity mirrors, dual map pockets behind the front seatbacks, aluminum front door entry plates, easy enter/exit for the driver’s seat, air vents behind the front console, storage slots in each door, self-dimming rearview mirror, garage door openers, power one-touch moonroof, remote trunk release, center console with dual cupholders/storage bin with padded armrest, Lexus clock, rear pull-down armrest with dual cupholders/storage tray, 60/40 rear fold-down seat, Bluetooth, Surround Sound Audio System with HD radio Gracenote album art, MP3 player, USB integration, Sirius Satellite Radio, trunk light and front/rear floor mats. My test IS 250 also came with the Navigation Package that includes Lexus Navigation system, backup camera, remote touch interface, intuitive parking assist, Lexus Enform with App Suite, destination assist & eDestination, Lexus Insider, Voice Command, real-time traffic and weather alerts.
Standard safety systems include front/rear crumple zones, steel beams in each door, steel safety cage, 10-airbags-driver/front passenger front, knee & side airbags, rear side airbags, side curtain airbags, 5-3-point safety belts with front pretensioners/load limiters, LATCH system for child seats, Child Rear Door Locks, Lexus Safety Connect with automatic collision alert, stolen vehicle location, emergency assist button (SOS), and enhanced roadside assistance.
The all-new 2014 Lexus IS 250 is an exciting and luxurious compact sporty sedan. It is all-new in every way-outside, inside with revised steering and suspension systems that make driving the all-new sedan more fun and exciting than before.
COPYRIGHT: 2014: HARVEY SCHWARTZ
- Price: Base IS 250 $35,950 / As-Tested $43,135
- Engine: 2.5-liter DOHC V6 204 horsepower @ 6,400 rpm / 185 ft-lbs. torque @ 4,800 rpm
- Wheelbase: 110.2 inches
- Total length: 183.7 inches
- Total width: 71.3 inches
- Total height: 56.3 inches
- Track: f/r-60.4/61 inches
- Headroom: f/r-38.2/36.9 inches
- Legroom: f/r-44.8/32.2 inches
- EPA passenger volume: 90.2 cu.ft.
- EPA cargo volume: 13.8 cu.ft.
- Curb weight: 3,461 pounds
- Ground clearance: 5.3 inches
- Fuel tank: 17.4 gallons
- Turning circle: 34.2 ft.
- 0-60 mph: 7.7 seconds
- Top speed: 140mph
- EPA fuel economy: 21 mpg/city, 30 mpg/highway
|2011 Lexus IS250 F Sport Review & Test Drive||
One of the more exciting aspects of Toyota can be found in their Lexus line of vehicles starting with the new 2011 Lexus IS250. The new Lexus IS has been a very successful sports sedan keeping its aggressive finesse while receiving a minor face-lift for 2011.
My new Ultrasonic Blue 2011 Lexus IS250 was optioned with a new F-Sport package that incorporates a firmer suspension upgrade, heated sports seats with microfiber inserts, 18-inch dark-finished wheels, grill inserts and an F-Sport badge on the side of the front fender. One quick look and this Lexus IS250 F Sport package closely resembles the top-of-the-line performance oriented ISF. Although the lackluster 2.5-liter V6 producing only 204 horsepower and 185 pound-feet of torque refracts any bit of real ‘sport’ from the IS250, it still comes off as a capable performer visually and in the turns.
Despite the Lexus IS250 being in need of much more power, the ride is firm and stable at high speeds. It is almost deceiving because the vehicle feels as if it should have much more power. This is mostly due to the F Sport package which meshes better with the IS350’s 3.5-liter V6 with 306 horsepower. Luckily, the IS250’s V6 engine is as smooth as silk but does have a bit of weight, 3,455 lbs to lug around. Normal driving is never a problem as the small V6 does not seem to strain much with its well-managed and soft-shifting 6sp automatic transmission.
The larger 18-inch wheels with 255-series tires on the rear aided in the IS250’s handling abilities. In other words, the IS250 would have no problem handling 100 more horses just as it is with the F Sport package. Not to mention, they look great with the Ultra Sonic Blue paint job commonly found on the monstrous 417 horsepower Lexus ISF.
The interior is a bit cramped for someone just over 6 feet tall though, it’s manageable. At times I would hit my head on the roof but it is nothing a simple adjustment of the 8-way power sport seats can’t fix. Fit and finish of Lexus interiors are always top-notch as it is in the new 2011 Lexus IS250. Just about every aspect of the Lexus IS250’s interior screams high-quality. The same can be said about the build quality of the new IS having a quiet cabin that is never disturbed with odd sounds or rattles. The Lexus IS’s interior gives its German competition – the BMW 3 Series, Benz C-Class and Audi A4 – a serious run for the money.
The new gauge cluster in the IS250 is somewhat of an evolution from the chronograph styled gauges in the outgoing IS300 from the early 2000’s. The dials are big, bright and easy to read in a nice white-light, which is very Lexus-Esq. The adjustable speed limiting orange LED light ring is a nice touch also warning you that you have passed a manually pre-set speed limit.
In the rear things get even more cramped in the new IS250 with only 30.6 inches of rear leg room, 4 inches less than the current BMW 3 Series sedan. A rear pass-through is only offered for the extra cargo storage instead of folding rear seats. Fortunately, trunk space is at 13 cubic feet which is about the normal capacity for this class of vehicle.
Making up for the small seating areas would be the Lexus IS250’s comfortable ride and ease of drivability. The power steering is somewhat predictable. The variable power assist does not communicate the road to the driver as you would expect from a car that looks this sporty. The steering, however, does a good job of firming during highway speeds versus parking maneuvers.
Sales figures of the new Lexus IS would possibly prove it is appealing more for its sporty good-looks overlooking its lack of horsepower. I can say driving the new Lexus IS250 is a pleasure and more of a practical choice considering the more powerful IS350 starts at almost $7,000 more than the IS250. Gas figures for the IS250 are not much different than many other cars with a lot more power. I was able to get a decent 25 mpg in the city and near 31 mpg on the highway, just as the EPA estimates. Mpg figures for the IS250 are 24 mpg city and 30 mpg highway.
Automotive enthusiasts will find a lot of sex-appeal from the new Lexus IS250 with the F Sport package but walk way slightly disappointed with its lack of power and at the same time well-pleased with its nimble handling. At $36,630 for my IS250 F Sport package tester, Lexus remains to stay within reason for a manufacturer that has proven quality and almost unmatched fit and finish. Comparable configurations from BMW would cost $3,000 more but will also provide better performance.
Copyright: 2011 AutomotiveAddicts.com
- Price: Base IS250 $32,645 As-Tested $36,630
- Engine: 2.5-liter 204hp @ 6400 rpm/185 ft-lbs torque @ 4800 rpm
- Drive: RWD
- Wheelbase: 107.4in.
- Total length: 180.3in.
- Total width: 70.9in.
- Total height: 56.1in.
- Track: f/r-60.4/60.4in.
- Turning circle: 33.5ft.
- Headroom: f/r-37.2/36.7in.
- Legroom: f/r-43.9/30.6in.
- MPG est.: 24 mpg city/30mpg highway
- Fuel tank: 17.1 gallons
- 0-60mph: 8.4 seconds
- EPA cargo volume: 13.0cu.ft.
- Curb weight: 3,455