Engines And Transmission
The IS 250 is powered by a new direct-injection 2.5-litre V6 petrol engine with dual VVT-i. The aluminium unit is no heavier than the 2.0-litre engine featured in the previous generation IS. It develops 204bhp (208 DIN hp) at 6,400rpm and a maximum 252Nm of torque at 4,800rpm. This enables 0-62mph acceleration in 8.1 seconds with manual transmission, 8.4 seconds in automatic versions. Top speed is 144mph manual, 141mph automatic. Combined cycle carbon dioxide emissions are 231g/km manual, 214g/km automatic.
The Lexus IS 220d, due for launch in the UK in January 2006, is equipped with Lexus’s first diesel engine. The all-aluminium, four-cylinder, 2.2-litre common rail direct injection unit delivers the power and refinement demanded by Lexus, with 175bhp (177 DIN hp) produced at 3,600rpm and 400Nm of torque between 2,000 and 2,600rpm. Preliminary, pre-homologation figures show 0-62mph acceleration in 8.9 seconds and a top speed of 134mph.
The IS 220d is also the cleanest premium diesel model available, thanks to the application of Lexus Clean Diesel Technology. A series of engine features reduce combined levels of nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter (PM) emissions to levels well below Euro IV standards and those proposed for Euro V.
A new six-speed manual transmission is fitted as standard, with a newly-developed six-speed automatic available as a £1,000 option on the IS 250. The close ratio automatic system features steering wheel-mounted paddle shifts for sequential manual gear selection and delivers superior fuel economy (31.0mpg combined).
Suspension And Steering
New double wishbone front and multi-link rear suspension systems with monotube shock absorbers have been adopted to deliver trademark Lexus ride comfort and excellent handling and dynamic performance. An all-new speed-sensitive, electrically assisted power steering (EPS) system is used.
All IS models are equipped as standard with eight airbags, including knee airbags for the driver and front passenger. The passenger front airbag is the first in the world to use a twin-chamber construction, designed to disperse impact forces across the head and shoulders, instead of across the face, as on a conventional airbag.
A full suite of electronic control systems are fitted as standard: ABS with Brake Assist System (BAS) and Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD); Vehicle Stability Control (VSC, not featured on IS 220d Sport); and Traction Control (TRC).