The 2016 Lexus IS 350 is the upgrade trim level of the IS 200t luxury sedan and is available in rear- or all-wheel-drive configurations. A less powerful variant with all-wheel drive called the IS 300, is also available.
Inside the Lexus engine bay sits a 3.5-liter V-6 with 306 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque is the only engine available in the 2016 IS 350 and it’s paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission on rear-drive variants or a six-speed automatic in models equipped with all-wheel drive. There are also four drive modes – Normal, Eco, Sport and Sport + — that modify the transmission mapping. If we are to get technical fuel economy is respectable for the class at 19/28 mpg city/highway for the rear-drive IS 350 and 19/26 mpg with all-wheel drive.
The 2016 Lexus IS 350 comes standard with keyless entry/start, 18-inch alloy wheels, Bluetooth connectivity, Siri Eyes Free, heated front sport seats, a power moonroof, and dual-zone climate control. Optional extras include navigation, a rearview camera, enhanced Bluetooth, memory function for the driver’s seat, heated and ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel, a Mark Levinson audio system, and the Lexus Enform Apps suite. However we were in the F Sport trim level, which adds 18-inch alloy wheels shod in performance tires, a revised front fascia, a more aggressive suspension tuning, adaptive variable suspension with Sport S+ mode, LFA-inspired digital instrument cluster, F Sport bolstered and heated front seats, LED headlights, high friction brake pads, and perforated leather trimmed heated steering wheel and shift knob.
The Lexus IS 350 F Sport is a lot of fun to drive offering an excellent blend of handling, power and ride comfort with the chassis up to the task of reigning it all in. The V-6 engine was responsive and had plenty of power for passing and accelerating and when it gets up into those high revs it certainly puts a smile on your face with a sonorous exhaust note. We also really appreciated some of the little things, too, like the start button and the way the dials radiate orange as redline is approached willing you to shift.
We also found the F Sports trim and thick carpeting were signature ‘luxury’ items; the cabin well-insulated against road noise and climate control worked to great effect. The IS 350 also looked great. It is definitely a sports-oriented fun sedan to drive. That makes it a very good thing to want to have in your garage.