By Khulekani Dumisa and Otsile Kadiege
We recently spent time behind the wheel of the updated Lexus IS 300h F Sport which gets a restyled exterior. The car looks especially sporty and wide thanks to pronounced rear haunches and a wider front, and rear track. It’s stunning and has a lot of road presence.
The interior build quality is excellent and stylish although the center console design looks dated. The jittery trackpad can be avoided thanks to steering controls and a sleek touchscreen infotainment with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
The IS has a sizable boot which can be extended by folding down the rear seats thus making the car very practical. Other than practicality, the interior gets to marks for quality and its overall design. It is good to look at and the car looks and feels like it will easily be in your family got over 10 years. If you are able to keep it for that long, it will not look dated at all thanks to the futuristic design.
Engine and drive
The IS 300h is powered by a petrol-hybrid 2.5 litre engine that makes 133kW (164kW total system output) and 221Nm. Fuel consumption is a claimed 5,2l/100km. The 2.5-litre petrol-hybrid’s engine has decent power but it can be let down by its uninspiring ECVT transmission. The latter is, however, better suited for in-town driving where it aids fuel consumption.
The car is engaging to drive with the steering being direct and the suspension being able to soak up road imperfections well. The rear wheel driven car remains planted during spirited jaunts and occupant comfort is never sacrificed.
Pricing is hefty at R916,100 but there are literally no optional extras as everything comes standard. The updated Lexus IS is definitely to be considered when buying in this segment.
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