TORONTO, ON – FEBRUARY 22, 2021 –Last year’s reimagined 2021 Lexus IS struck the perfect balance of sportiness and sophistication, making it the best IS to date. However, Chief Engineer Naoki Kobayashi and his team at Lexus International have been working on something truly special exclusively for the North American market. Enter the first-ever Lexus IS 500 F SPORT Performance, which dials up the sports sedan formula to eleven with the addition of a powerful 472-horsepower naturally aspirated V8 engine and ferocious quad exhaust system. It expands the IS family and ushers in a new era of F SPORT Performance models that will appeal to passionate driving enthusiasts that crave higher levels of performance over the standard F SPORT models.
A Rare Breed: Lexus F SPORT Performance Line
As the first model in the new Lexus F SPORT Performance line, the IS 500 engine provides a boost in displacement and performance over the IS 350’s 3.5-liter V6. With a push of the engine start button, its naturally aspirated 5.0-liter V8 engine roars to life, providing a not-so-subtle reminder that something special lies beneath its raised hood. The IS 500 has a maximum output of 472 hp at 7,100 rpm and 395 lb.-ft. of peak torque at 4,800 rpm. Despite the drastically more powerful engine, the vehicle tips the scales at 1,765kg, gaining only 5 kg of additional curb weight over the standard IS 350 AWD F SPORT. The IS 500 is capable of delivering a manufacturer-estimated 0-to-100km/h time of 4.6 seconds and has a manufacturer-estimated fuel consumption of 9.8 L/100 km on the highway. Other IS 500 performance enhancements include a throaty quad exhaust system with dual stacked tail pipes that perfectly amplify the new V8 engine. This exhaust not only sounds ferocious, but is inspired by F models, like the RC F.
IS 500 uses the same eight-speed Sport Direct Shift automatic transmission found in the IS 300 RWD model. It features drive mode select Sport S and Sport S+, which provides advanced engine and transmission mapping to enhance performance. Sport S+ also adjusts the amount of EPS steering assist and damping force to deliver sportier handling to match the updated powertrain settings. Custom Mode is also available, offering multiple combinations for powertrain (Normal/Eco/Power), chassis (Normal/Sport) and air conditioner (Normal/Eco).
Starting with the 2022 IS 500, Lexus F SPORT Performance models will come adorned with unique black badging on the sides to distinguish it from F models.
Building on Lexus Driving Signature
The new 2021 IS launched a new era of vehicles developed at Toyota Technical Center Shimoyama with a uniform Lexus Driving Signature. Since Lexus launched, the tactile feel, behavior, and execution for each model has been driven by the vision and efforts of the Chief Engineer. Moving forward, the efforts of the CE will be focused on elevating the vehicles to a new standard of performance and handling as developed by Lexus International President Koji Sato and Chief Branding Officer Akio Toyoda. The ultimate goal is to deliver a new generation of Lexus vehicles that is more balanced, refined in control, and confident than ever before. Linear steering, brake responses, and optimized handling with exceptional ride quality is the result of heightened focus on tuning of the chassis and its interactions with the control surfaces through diligent evaluation at a test facility unlike any other.
The all-new IS 500 builds upon the improvements made to the 2021 IS with a focus on delivering confidence and a linear connection between driver and vehicle. The IS 500 comes standard with the Dynamic Handling Package (DHP), which includes Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) and a Torsen® limited slip differential (LSD) that improves handling and performance thanks to enhanced traction when cornering or exiting turns. The LSD helps maintain straight-line stability as well. Engineers have also improved the IS chassis performance with the addition of a Yamaha® rear performance damper. This damper reduces dynamic structural distortion, delivering increased comfort at low speeds, and additional stability and agility at high speeds. Brake cooling enhancements have also been made over the standard IS 350 F SPORT with additional aerodynamic cooling and larger 14.0-inch two-piece aluminum front rotors and 12.7-inch rear rotors.
The Devil’s in the Details
The IS 500 features subtle exterior enhancements to help set it apart from the standard IS 350 F SPORT. The hood has been raised nearly 50 mm and receives sculpted center character lines, while the front bumper and fenders have been lengthened to help accommodate the vehicle’s naturally aspirated V8 muscle. IS 500 will come standard with exclusive 19-inch split-10-spoke Enkei alloy wheels. Not only are they beautiful and intricate, the wheels are approximately 0.5 kg lighter per wheel in front and 1 kg lighter per wheel in the rear, compared to the standard 19-inch F SPORT wheel. Other exterior updates include a revised lower rear diffuser accent that accentuates the quad exhaust system, as well as dark chrome window trim. Tying these visual and performance cues together is the black IS F SPORT rear lip spoiler.
Inside, drivers are greeted with black F SPORT Performance badging on the heated leather-wrapped steering wheel and door sill scuff plates. It also comes standard with the IS F SPORT accelerator pedal, brake pedal and footrest, but the combination instrumentation meter receives an updated startup animation that is exclusive to IS 500.
Enhanced Lexus Safety System+
The IS 500 inherits the updated Lexus Safety System+ 2.5 recently launched on the 2021 IS. A number of key features that are part of the Lexus Safety System+ have been enhanced, along with the addition of a few new features.
For starters, the Pre-Collision System (PCS), which include Frontal Collision Warning (FCW), Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB), Pedestrian Detection and Bicyclist Detection, features an enhancement to the lens camera and millimeter-wave radar elements to expand the response range. By enhancing the radar and camera capabilities it is now possible for the system to help detect not only the vehicle ahead but also a preceding bicyclist in daytime and even a preceding pedestrian in daytime and low-light conditions. At intersections, the system has the capability under certain conditions to recognize an oncoming vehicle or pedestrian when performing a left-hand turn and is designed to activate typical PCS functions if needed. Additional PCS functions include Emergency Steering Assist (ESA), which is designed to assist steering within the vehicle’s lane as cued by the driver.
All-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC) can be activated above 50km/h and is designed to perform vehicle-to-vehicle distance controls down to 0 km/h and can resume from a stop. DRCC also includes a new feature that allows for smooth overtaking of slower vehicles. If traveling behind a vehicle going slower than the preset speed, once the driver engages the turn signal, the system will provide an initial increase in acceleration in preparation for changing lanes and; after the driver changes lanes, the vehicle will continue acceleration until it reaches the original preset driving speed.
Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist (LDA w/ SA) is designed to help notify the driver if it senses an inadvertent lane departure at speeds above 50km/h via steering wheel vibrations or audible alert. It can also take slight corrective measures to help keep the driver within the visibly marked lane. When DRCC is set and engaged, Lane Tracing Assist (LTA) is designed to provide slight steering force to help steer to the center of the lane to assist the driver with staying in the lane using visible lane markers or a preceding vehicle. LTA alerts the driver with a visual warning and either an audible alert or steering wheel vibration. In the new IS, the lane recognition performance, which makes LTA possible, has been improved with enhanced recognition of line and road edge, lateral G performance, and enhanced control and stability after lane change.
Additional Lexus Safety System+ 2.5 features include Intelligent High Beams, which detects preceding or oncoming vehicles and automatically switches between high beam and low beam headlights.
Lexus Enform for Safety and Convenience
Enform Safety Connect comes with a three-year trial with access to Lexus Enform response centers 24/7/365. With Enform Service Connect, complimentary for the first 10 years, Guests can stay informed using the Vehicle Health Report in the Lexus App.. In addition, the three-year trial of Enform Remote allows Guests to use the Lexus App allows guests to remotely start their engine and lock/unlock their doors. With an active subscription, the Lexus App dashboard provides a personalized view of convenient vehicle and connected service information. Guests also can manage their subscriptions right from the palm of their hand.
More information regarding MSRP, options, exterior and interior color choices will be made available closer to launch. The all-new 2022 IS 500 F SPORT Performance is expected to arrive in dealerships later this Fall.
About Lexus Canada
Lexus Canada is the exclusive Canadian distributor of Lexus luxury cars and sport utility vehicles through a sales and service network of 39 dealers across Canada. Guests have access to a wide range of luxury and performance vehicles with a total of 12 Lexus nameplates available in Canada, including the largest luxury hybrid lineup of 6 hybrid models. Inspired by bold design, intuitive technology, and peak performance, Lexus is committed to delivering the highest quality products and services and creating amazing experiences for their guests. The Lexus RX 350 and RX 450h are built at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada’s (TMMC) award-winning Cambridge South plant. For more information about Lexus and Lexus products, please visit: www.lexus.ca.
Every effort has been made to ensure the product specifications, equipment, and content on this site are accurate based on information available at time of publishing. In some cases, certain changes in standard equipment or options may occur, which may not be reflected online. Toyota Canada reserves the rights to make these changes without notice or obligation.