Tag - Lexus

Driven: 2014 Lexus IS350 F-Sport RWD

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A few weeks ago, I recounted the five hundred or so miles I put on one of Lexus’ new IS250 sedans and the pleasure I took in accumulating those miles. I felt it was a fantastic car in search of a better engine. Well, Lexus heard, apparently, and felt fit to provide me with a week-long sample of the larger-engined IS350 F-Sport to see if that cured my (admittedly few) complaints.

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Road Tested: 2014 Lexus IS250

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It’s no secret that Lexus has been on a bit of a roll lately, especially in their attempts to imbue their lineup with the necessary bit of “Sport” that was lacking in the brand’s early years. Beginning with the IS-F, the momentum carried through with years of teasing the LF-A super sports car, which was finally released to both praise and shock (at the price) a couple of years ago. Now, with a very competent midsize sports sedan already in their lineup (see the GS350 F-Sport I reviewed last June), a gap at the compact end of the sales spectrum has finally been filled with the car you see here – the new IS.

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Road Tested: 2013 Lexus ES300h

Efficient Luxury Transport for the Pleated Set

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Put yourself in a place for a moment – one where Porsches, Mustangs and Corvettes are of little concern. Hard to imagine, I know, but bear with me – at some point, many car shoppers decide they’ve endured the stresses of enthusiast auto ownership for too long. Maybe they bore the brunt of a few too many high dollar repairs, or been left stranded in the office parking lot for the last time. They’ve grown weary of having something “sporty” and all the compromises that go along with that. It’s time for a change – they want something comfortable, relaxing, quiet and luxurious – maybe even something that gets really good gas mileage. For one reason or another, maybe a diesel is out of the question – you wouldn’t want your significant other accidentally topping off the tank with gasoline, you know. That can make for a hefty repair bill. They’d even be willing to consider a shade of beige for the paint color. If only there was a car that fit those exacting needs…

Enter the Lexus ES300h.

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Second look: 2013 Lexus GS350 F-Sport

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Vanity, thy name is midsize executive saloon. Few automotive categories are more about being pure arm candy for their owners than $50 – $70,000 luxury sedans. Think about it – if the only thing you were after was practicality, you’d probably be looking elsewhere. These cars are often tighter inside for four passengers than a midsized family sedan, their gas mileage trails that of the roomier FWD luxury segment unless you spring for a hybrid model, their reflexes aren’t quite in the realm of sports sedans (that’s what the halo models of their respective ranges are for) and they are, of course, priced out of the reach of the everyday shopper. And yet, none of that really matters – because few better ways exist of really letting your neighbors know you’ve made it.

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Road Tested: 2013 Lexus ES350

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Despite its evergreen status as Lexus’ best-selling model, the ES has been routinely treated like a leper by the motoring press practically since its inception. It is just a Camry Avalon wearing a fancy hat, after all. So instead, the buff books devote their page space to the far slower-selling IS, GS and LS lines. Why is that, exactly? Sure, the rear-wheel drive Lexii models more closely mirror the product lines available from the continental upscale brands, which makes for more interesting comparison tests. And the IS and GS are certainly the performance drivers’ choices out of the current Lexus lineup. But, aside from the IS-F and LFA, few performance drivers buy Lexuses in the first place. Near as I can tell, the Lexus set wants comfort, quietness and quality, all of which the ES provides in spades. So – as an admittedly junior member of the motoring press, but a member nonetheless – perhaps I can do my civic duty to start turning the tables back in favor of quite worthy road cars like the ES.

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Crossing Over, Part II: 2013 Lexus RX350 F-Sport

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Lexus more or less invented the luxury crossover segment when it introduced the RX300 to the U.S. back in 1998, and has dominated the segment ever since. Pretty much every other luxury or near-luxury brand has rushed in to try to lift the sales crown off the RX’s head, with limited success. One could argue that the reason for Lexus’ success in the segment has been its measured, even restrained approach to comprehensively updating the RX. Only now in its third generation in as many different decades, the 2013 RX nonetheless manages to feel as fresh and competitive as ever. We spent a week with the F-Sport variant of the RX line, introduced last year, to see how well the luxury end of the crossover segment is represented in Lexus’ perennial sales champ.

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