The IS-F is a credible effort for a company whose stock in trade is luxury and refinement, and there is much that Lexus has absolutely nailed.

The V8 powerplant stands comparison with any of its rivals and the overall balance of the IS-F’s entertaining and adjustable chassis is wonderful. Those are the basics and they’re spot on. 

Lexus has done well, but could do better

In the end, then, it’s details that set the Mercedes C63 and BMW M3 apart from the IS-F. But they’re the details that separate excellence from mere competence.

If Lexus is serious about its ‘Fuji’ moniker, it should fit a limited-slip differential and a gearbox better suited to fast driving. It has tuned the suspension to retain comfort while improving control, but in the end it excels at neither. And inside you’ll find seats that are too flat.

Lexus has done well, but could do better

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