The Lexus IS F is the sporting flagship of the compact executive saloon range. It’s designed to compete against high-performance saloons such as the BMW M3, Jaguar XF-R, Audi S4 and Mercedes C63 AMG and comes with a 5.0-litre V8 that’s mated to an eight-speed gearbox.
From the outside, the differences between the IS F and standard IS are subtle. The F gets a bulging bonnet to make room for the 5.0-litre V8, wider wheelarches front and rear, deeper sidekirts and bumpers, 19-inch wheels and a pair of ‘figure eight’ exhaust tips out back. On the road, the IS F is hugely entertaining.
It’s not as focused as its German rivals, but that big V8 means makes it easy to spin the rear wheels and indulge in lurid powerslides when you turn the traction control off. But the IS F is equally at home when you want to take it easy, as it soaks up bumps and is quiet and comfortable with lots of standard kit to keep you occupied.