There’s no evidence of cost cutting in the quality of the IS’s construction; nor is there any doubting that it possesses a genuine luxury feel fully in keeping with the price and Lexus badge.

The touch-screen infotainment system is largely simple to use and, at the Lexus base price, comprises all the kit you would expect to be standard and a bit more besides.

Matt Prior

Matt Prior

Road test editor
Shame the interior doesn’t feel more special, like it does if you’re sitting in the M3 and C63.

However, why did Lexus feel the need to chuck the entire palette of interior materials at the cabin? In the top-spec SE-L model, leather, wood, plastic, brushed aluminium and chrome all play their part in compromising the cohesion of what would otherwise be a very smartly designed and well-executed interior.

The seat and wheel can be widely adjusted for an ideal driving position, from where you’ll find excellent ergonomics and electronically illuminated dials that are paragons of clarity. Interior room? It’s at a premium in the rear of the cabin, but the boot is average for a car in this class.

Much like in the M3 and C63, the hot IS-F’s interior pretty much follows the themes set by the standard car. Dashboard architecture and materials are largely unchanged, save for some faux-metal finish on the centre console. Unlike in the BMW and Mercedes, though, changes to the Lexus don’t amount to serious alterations to the driving furniture. Granted, the IS-F’s front chairs are subtly different from a standard IS’s, but not by enough – they don’t drop low enough and have insufficient lateral support.

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