The genesis brand emerged, alfa romeo returned to the united states and big rivals like the bmw, 3 series, mercedes c class and audi a4. All got updates, so lexus needed to respond. This is the 2021 lexus. Is we have the 350 f sport trim here? You can only get the f sport as the 350. You can only get the 350 as an f sport for 2021.. As you can see, they’ve done a major facelift to the car. We still have the same engines under the hood, but we do have some new technology to talk about so let’s see what the 2021 lexus is. 350 f. Sport is all about Music, so let’s start off with what is obviously the biggest change here on the 2021 is, and that is the exterior facelift, where it’s amazing, how they’ve been able to take this car and make it look completely different with just a facelift. I think a lot of what we’re seeing here is this gorgeous infrared paint job that we have here. Yes, that is the same color that you get on the lc500 flagship it is so gorgeous. I can almost see my soul popping out through it it’s so gorgeous. I love how lexus has updated the headlights here, it’s no longer that split design with the running light below it. I think it looks a lot more sleek and the car looks wider way more imposing the people are going to stop and stare at you in traffic.
In this car in this color i love the spindle grille. You might not agree. I’Ve heard it’s a very polarizing thing, i’ve seen a lot of people say they love it. A lot of people say they hate it, but it does give this car that wide stance that i mentioned, the f sport is a more aggressive. Looking car, you get 19 inch wheels, no matter what, but we have an optional f sport handling package, which means we have these really cool. Forged 19 inch wheels they’re, staggered they’re a little wider. I think they’re 235s up front 265s in the rear. We also have an f sport badge here on the side and some black accents, including black, mirror caps. I love how there’s not a lot of chrome on this vehicle coming around the back. We have a completely radical new design as well. We have this really cool connected tail light bar. I think that looks awesome. We also have an f sport badge, letting us know that we do have the f sport here is 350, as well and with the handling package you do get a really cool carbon fiber. Spoiler here, that is really nice, and that is real carbon fiber. Of course, if i was going to be getting this car, i would skip the is300 and i would go straight for this f sport model Music. So now let’s come inside. The is 350f sport where, unfortunately, the interior is not quite as drastically different as the exterior all of the layout you’re going to find familiar from last year’s model.
There are some updates that we can speak of, but the interior. The cabin is pretty much the same basic like all of the hvac and audio controls are the same. We have this kind of generic looking black plastic it’s kind of drab in here i kind of wish we had like a color, maybe like red leather seats, or something like that. We do have this really nice ash wood here, i think that’s as part of our f sport, dynamic handling package that we have on this car. We still have a really nice chunky steering wheel. It looks a lot like the one you’d get in like an rcf. I think this is a very cool steering wheel. Although i’m more of a fan of thinner steering wheels than big thick ones like this, but it works out. Fine, the climate controls all look the same as last year. We have the interesting sliders here for the temperature controls. You can either slide them up or down, or you can tap up or down to control the temperature. I love how lexus has still included a volume knob and a tuning knob, which are these brushed aluminum, because we have the optional mark levinson 17 speaker system in here, which is a lot 1800 watts that’s, actually a very nice speaker system for this car. I love how they’re anodized aluminum as well, and we do have buttons for the radio media track play pause, so you don’t have to use the silly lexus track pad.
Never been a big fan of this. I always find that i miss where i’m trying to go on the screen, but for 2021 we do have look at this. A touch screen that is awesome, i’m, so happy lexus, put a touch screen and, unlike the one on the rx that i tested earlier this year, this one doesn’t feel impossible to reach. I can actually get this one without, like leaning my body too far forward. This is the optional 10.3 inch screen that we get as part of a navigation package. The base is going to come with a smaller 8 inch screen. Even this 10 inch, one doesn’t look huge i’ve been in a lot of cars with massive screens lately, but it is a good size it’s wide screen. I really don’t have any complaints with it and finally, the is gets apple, carplay and android, auto connectivity. Finally, lexus is really back into 2018 here with the technology. It really just feels like this. Car is what lexus should have done in terms of updates back in the 2018 or 2019 model year, so i’m very happy with the improvements they’ve made here, but i kind of wish they would have just made them a model year or two sooner. We also have some cool features. We have the rear sunshade in the back that’s a neat feature and we do have a 360 degree camera here. As you can see, this is the mode when you’re parked or if i throw it in reverse, you get this as well it’s much higher resolution than i think i remember some previous lexus camera systems being so in terms of technology.
Lexus has finally at least caught up to the competition. We still have the very cool lfa inspired gauge cluster as well as you can see. I have it in its normal mode. If i turn it into sport, we get some different gauges. If i turn it into sport, plus it really emphasizes that tachometer and of course i have this really cool button here, where the whole thing is going to slide over and now i have all of my drive info radio info and stuff like that, i can push It and have it slide back. This has been out for a few years now on lexus products, but it still looks just as cool to me as the day it came out because we have the f sport. We have more bolstered seats, uh, both my camera guy and my mom sat in this vehicle and they were like i don’t, really like the bolstering. I happen to really like it. I think it holds you into place very nicely. Finally, let’s wrap up with the car buzz cup holder index, so i have my very large yeti now. I will say that the cup holders themselves are actually excellent. They hold the yeti in very well no problems there. There are two of them that are very nicely sized, but i can’t give this vehicle anything more than a two out of five, because the cup holder index also includes uh storage elsewhere in the front for your phone for your sunglasses, whatever there is nowhere, nothing to Put anything you’re either gon na have to put it here in the door or here in the armrest, where it’s not convenient to get at.
There is no storage here outside in front of the shifter or anywhere else. This car really does feel like. It was designed way back in 2013, so the layout is just a little bit, not great ergonomically Music, now hopping into the rear seat. Nothing has really changed here on the is still the same size as before, and that was not very big. You only get 32.2 inches of leg room back here, which is small even for the compact sedan segment. We do at least have air vents back here and a nice rear sun shade to protect us from the sun, and we do have some pop out cup holders here on the armrest. But aside from that, this is not the best people hauler and just like the back seat, the is does not have the biggest trunk in the segment, but before i fully open it, i just want to talk about how heavy this trunk is. It is the heaviest drunk i’ve ever felt on a sedan. I think that’s, probably because this connected real rear, uh tail light piece is probably pretty heavy, but i’ll just ignore that. Oh, you really have to like, throw it open. It doesn’t want to stay open in here. We’Ve got 10.9 cubic feet of space, which is not huge uh compared to the rest of the segment. We can fold down the seats to get a little bit more space, but you can see this opening is just not very big.
So if you have like a big box, it might not shimmy in there. So if you want the most practical sedan, the is 350 is on the smaller side, Music, all right so time to get the lexus is out on the road, and i was expecting a car with this much and this significant of a facelift to get maybe at Least some updates under the hood, but unfortunately, lexus has decided to carry over its three engines for this model year. So here’s, what you got you got. The base is 300. That gets a two liter four cylinder: turbo 241 horsepower 258 pound feet of torque i’ve, driven that engine it’s not very spectacular, even compared to the other four cylinders in this segment that goes out to rear wheel drive through an eight speed automatic. Now, all of the all wheel, drive versions of the is get a six speed automatic and the all wheel, drive version of the is 300 actually gets a detuned three and a half liter v6, with 260 horsepower and 236 pound feet of torque. Now we have the f sport model, so all of the 350 models are f sports. For this year, lexus has decided to simplify the models, helped bring the price down quite significantly so three and a half liter v6 still, but it produces much better numbers, 311 horsepower and 280 pound feet of torque you’ll notice that that torque number is very low, especially When comparing it to the twin turbo, six cylinder engines that are offered elsewhere in this segment, which is why the is 350 just isn’t, really that fast, comparatively you get an eight speed auto with rear wheel, drive like we have here.
That gets you from 0 60. In only 5.6 seconds 5.7, if you get all wheel, drive so let’s see what that feels like i’m, going to go ahead and put the power down get a lot of traction. Music sounds good. Traction control really kicked in there to limit the wheel slippage there, but, as you heard, it sounds really good. It’S, a very throaty v6 lexus has tuned the exhaust a little bit here for this model to make the v6 sound even better. We have this active, sound control, knob down here, it’s, actually, a knob that you can go like there’s like infinitely adjustable positions, it’ll adjust the uh, the fake engine sound in here, that’ll sort of enhance it a little bit more. I think it sounds really good. I usually don’t like fake engine noises, but when it sounds this good, i don’t really mind it now. The performance here is just okay, comparatively to like a 3 series like an m340i, a c43 or an audi s4. Those cars are going to be well under five seconds to 60 miles an hour, so do with that information. What you will the is350 is not really a track ready car and it’s – definitely not a very tunable car. Now, what lexus has decided instead of power to focus on here is the suspension. We’Ve got double wishbones in the front with coil springs and a multi link, rear suspension. Lexus wanted this car to handle well, but it also wanted it to be very comfortable to that end.
I think they’ve really succeeded. This is a pretty fun car to drive, but it really doesn’t beat you up like the amg’s and the m sport models will do. This is very comfortable. The f sport gets a lot of unique touches that you don’t get on the is 300. You get unique: bumpers, grille surrounds rear, spoiler. All of that stuff. You also get 19 inch wheels, different suspension tuning and different exterior colors available, but we have what’s called the f sport dynamic handling package. Now that gets you just a little bit more it’s, 4. 200. But you do get a lot. You get adaptive variable suspension, so that’s going to firm up when i go ahead and put it into sport and sport plus mode here. We also have a torsion limited slip differential, but only on the rear, wheel, drive model, that’s, pretty handy as well. You don’t get that with all wheel drive you get the sport plus mode. You don’t usually get that unless you get the handling package, you only get a sport mode. We’Ve already seen those amazing forged bbs wheels, those look fantastic um, so i think i would opt for the handling package. 4 200 seems like a lot. If you really want just the aesthetic of it and you plan to use this car very sportingly. The limited slip differential is a really nice option, but i think a lot of people who are just going to use this car as their daily commuter probably don’t need it, but it does help you put the power down.
Let’S go ahead and put it down here. Come out of a corner, not a lot of torque, but when you get up in the rev range, this card does move quite well and we have it in the stiffest suspension mode and we’re going over a rough piece of road here and i’m. Really not too jarred all over the place. I do think that the composure of the is is very nice you’re gon na, like that, if you like, a very uh soft but still sporty ride in terms of fuel economy, uh it’s not bad, compared to some of the turbocharged options: 20 mpg in the city. 28 on the highway 23 combined, you lose a little bit on those numbers. If you opt for the all wheel, drive i think rear wheel. Drive is definitely the way to go here. It’S just really nicely balanced. We can talk a little bit about the steering. It waits up when you put it in the sport plus mode. It feels very accurate. I can go ahead and put the power down. I like the fact that it’s a naturally aspirated v6. It just has that linear feel you always kind of know what the engine is going to do. You know that at low rpms it’s not really going to kick the tires out. You know that at high rpms, when you get it up, there it’s going to start to feel a little more powerful, very stable here.
The transmission is good it’s, not the best transmission in the segment, but lexus’s eight speed box does a very nice job. We do have paddle shifters to take control of it if you so choose it’s very quiet in here as well. It is just a very nice, well refined package, although i will say that if you currently own let’s say a 2016 is 350 f sport you’re not going to find too much of a difference. It’S all nuanced differences you’re not going to hop in this car and go wow they’ve completely transformed the is so if you like, the way that your is drives now – and you were just hoping for a little bit more technology and maybe an updated look. Maybe the 2021 is is for you, but if you currently own this car and you’re like i want something faster, i want something more tunable. This is definitely not the vehicle. You should get Music Applause Music, so that was the facelifted 2020 lexus is, as you can see, they’ve done a great job on the exterior they did just enough on the interior, but i really wish they would have come out with some more updates under the hood, Because, even as a 350f sport, this car really pales in comparison to some of the european competitors with turbocharged v6s now let’s get on to the reason why you would buy an is 350 over some of its rivals price. This car is an absolute bargain.
It starts just under forty thousand dollars for that four cylinder is 300 model. Add a thousand dollars. If you want the v6 powered all wheel. Drive model is 300. Now, if you want the 350 f sport, that starts at nine 42 dollars with rear wheel drive. Remember you can only get the 350 as an f sport. Bring that price up to about forty five thousand dollars. If you want the 350 f sport as all wheel drive, although you lose the eight speed transmission, you only get a six speed. It’S. 4. 200. If you want the dynamic handling package with the f sport car that we have here, it’s only 3 800, if you have the all wheel, drive car because you don’t get that limited slip diff as tested, we have pretty much all the bells and whistles on this Car it’s 55 000 and that might sound like a lot until you realize that the starting price of a bmw m340i is 55 000. So you’re really getting a ton of value here, considering you’re getting a fully loaded car for the entry level of a bmw bundle that in with lexus reliability, running cost and the great dealership experience, and there still might be a reason. After all. To still get alexis. Is in 2021., we really hope you’ve enjoyed this review of this red beauty over here for more videos like it be sure to hit the subscribe button in the notification bell to be alerted of our latest videos, also check out carbos.
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