The Lexus IS 500 isn’t just an exciting new sports sedan, it’s a unicorn. That’s because when Lexus first decided to put the IS 500 into production, they relied on a simple philosophy: put a big engine in a small car, and make it go really fast. But this car is so much more than just a beefed-up IS.
Here are 7 key reasons why the Lexus IS 500 is sure to appeal to automotive purists.
1. The Way It Feels
The most noteworthy highlight of the IS 500? A naturally aspirated 5.0-liter V8 engine that turns out 472 hp – we’re talking over 50% more power than the new IS 350. As a result, this car has the responsiveness and linear acceleration that only a naturally aspirated V8 can deliver.
2. The Way It Sounds
That aforementioned Lexus 5.0-liter V8 isn’t just tremendously powerful; it also sounds fantastic. Out back, you’ve got two stacked exhaust pipes that take inspiration from the Lexus F models like the RC F – they look aggressive, amplify the engine note perfectly, and make the IS 500 sing.
3. The Aggressive Design
The changes to the exterior of the IS 500 are subtle but impactful: the raised hood immediately hints at the 5.0-liter V8 engine’s power, while a more subtle design change can be found on the bumper and fenders, which have been lengthened slightly to make room for that big motor. And, of course, let’s not forget the exclusive 19” split-10-spoke Enkei wheels that complete the IS 500’s new, more aggressive look.
4. The Attention to Detail
We’ve covered the more obvious upgrades, but the IS 500 also boasts a list of subtle updates that only a true enthusiast would notice. As the first vehicle in the new Lexus F SPORT Performance line, the IS 500 sports unique black F SPORT badges on the engine cover, door sills and steering wheel – plus there’s even a custom start-up screen graphic. Also of note, the window trim has been changed to a dark chrome. It’s the little touches that help set a car like this apart from the pack.
5. The Joy of Feeling Connected to the Road
Power is nothing without control, which is why the IS 500’s chassis is built on the standard IS F SPORT’s Dynamic Handling Package. This includes a Torsen limited slip rear differential, the Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) with Yamaha rear performance damper, as well as the adjustable drive mode selector with Sport and Sport Plus modes. And for when you need to reign that power in, Lexus also upgraded the IS 500’s brakes for additional cooling.
6. The Exclusivity
Production of the IS 500 isn’t capped at a specific number, but overall volume will be limited simply by nature of this car’s focused appeal. And in a world where V8 sports sedans like this are unfortunately all but extinct, this is an instant future classic!
7. It Delivers True Satisfaction
Anyone who genuinely loves cars should know how special this machine is. But the real reason to buy one is for the personal satisfaction that comes from having something that truly delivers on the promise of driving enjoyment. Combining the bold styling of the new 2021 IS launched last year with that awesome V8 engine, the IS 500 is simply an enthusiast’s dream. Or in other words, those who get, get it.