2018 Lexus ISShould you buy? Well, it depends..
What’s New for 2018?
All 2018 models now come standard with a convenient backup camera. Although the engine lineup remains the same, the available V6 engines benefit from a small bump in power. Adaptive lighting is offered as well.
Top 10 Reasons to Buy a 2018 Lexus IS – The Pros
1. Lexus Reliability
Lexus is known throughout the automotive world for producing trouble-free automobiles. The 2018 Lexus IS is among the most reliable small sports sedans on the market. With the proper maintenance, it should remain dependable even after surpassing 100,000 miles. You will be able to drive the IS on an everyday basis without fearing a sudden breakdown.
2. Smooth, Efficient Base Engine
Paired with a turbocharger, the base four-cylinder engine is geared towards the drivers who want to save fuel. According to the EPA, you can anticipate getting up to 32 mpg on the highway. You will also enjoy the engine’s smooth power delivery. It pumps out a healthy 241 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque.
3. V6 Engine Delivers the Fun
To experience more driving excitement, upgrade to the IS 350’s V6 engine. Lexus tweaked it to churn out a competitive 311 horsepower and 277 pound-feet of torque. When launched from a standstill, the IS 350 can fly to 60 mph in around 5.8 seconds. The engine’s high-revving design makes it especially fun.
4. Optional AWD System Performs Well in Snow
Rear-wheel drive comes standard on the 2018 Lexus IS. However, an AWD package is offered as well. When traveling in wintry weather, the AWD system will reward you with much-improved traction. The system uses special sensors to detect slippery road conditions. Although fuel economy takes a slight dip with the AWD package, it is not terribly inefficient.
5. F Sport Package Aids Handling
While even the standard 2018 Lexus IS handles well, the optional F Sport package transforms the sedan into a true athlete. Adaptive suspension dampers and a Torsen limited-slip rear differential enable the IS to carve road corners. The car’s grip is further enhanced by a set of 18-inch performance tires. Although the ride will be just a bit stiffer, most drivers won’t complain.
6. Expressive Styling
The 2018 Lexus IS has an edgy appearance. Large air intakes and a spindle grille make the sedan’s front fascia look especially aggressive. Stylish LED headlamps come standard. If you want to make a bolder statement, opt for the racy F Sport package. Some of the striking exterior colors include Redline, Nightfall Mica, and Eminent White Pearl.
7. Exciting, High-Quality Interior
A driver-focused cockpit helps the new IS to deliver a feeling of excitement. A high-performance gauge cluster comes standard with the F Sport package. The cabin’s overall quality is exceptional. Thoughtful touches, such as the analog clock, give the 2018 Lexus IS a luxurious appearance. While leather seating is offered, even the standard NuLuxe upholstery looks stunning.
8. Ample Standard Safety Features
Last year, Lexus equipped the IS with a standard safety package. You can use the sedan’s active driving aids to gain an extra peace of mind. Featuring steering assist, the lane departure system helps you to remain on course at all times. Meanwhile, adaptive cruise control automatically adjusts your speed when approaching traffic. A pre-collision system also comes standard.
9. High-Powered Mark Levinson
The optional Mark Levinson premium audio system is an extra expense. Nevertheless, it is well worth the cash. It is a major step above the standard system. You can look forward to experiencing life-like sound quality. An 835-watt amplifier enables the system to produce incredibly deep bass with no distortion.
10. Optional 10.3-inch Navigation Screen
The optional 10.3-inch navigation screen is a must for travelers. It makes it easier for you to pinpoint your destination. High-resolution graphics enable drivers to clearly see the available routes.
Reasons Not to Buy a 2018 Lexus IS – The Cons
1. Fails to Offer a Manual Transmission
The lack of a manual transmission puts the 2018 Lexus IS at a disadvantage against sports sedans like the BMW 3 Series. While automatic transmissions are now more popular than ever before, there are still plenty of drivers who appreciate a traditional stick-shift transmission. In the eyes of some people, a manual gearbox would allow the IS to deliver more driving excitement.
2. Backseat Lacks the Necessary Legroom
Unfortunately, the Lexus IS isn’t recommended for full-size families. Its backseat simply does not provide enough legroom. Even on short trips to the supermarket, teenagers will feel cramped sitting in the back. This is especially true for the folks who are forced to sit behind a tall driver.
3. Infotainment System Trails the Competition
There are a few cons to the sedan’s infotainment system. For starters, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are still not offered. This issue may prevent some smartphone users from accessing certain apps. Furthermore, the system’s console-mounted controller can be distracting.
How it Stacks up to the Competition:
Some of the main rivals include the 2018 BMW 3 Series and the 2018 Audi A4. In terms of long-term reliability, the 2018 Lexus IS trumps these European sports sedans. Some drivers will also like the edgier look of the Lexus IS. When equipped with the optional F Sport performance package, the Lexus IS handles the road a bit better than the Audi A4.
Before you buy a new sports sedan, be sure to first test drive the 2018 Lexus IS. No other car in the segment has a more impressive reliability rating. You can also take full advantage of the car's standard safety package. Although the Lexus IS has a rather compact design, it is sized just right for the drivers who have small children.
• Why buy a 2017 Lexus IS? w/ pros vs cons