Competes with : BMW 3 Series, Infiniti G, Cadillac ATS
Looks like : A scaled-down Lexus GS
Drivetrain : Specifications are TBA, though the IS 250 and IS 350 trims return
Hits dealerships : Second quarter 2013
There's no more waiting to see what the 2014 Lexus IS will look like. Lexus gives us a look at both the interior and exterior of its fully redesigned compact sports sedan ahead of the 2013 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. Lexus clearly took inspiration from the attractive LF-CC concept coupe shown at previous auto shows, though as of now, a coupe body style isn’t shown in the photos or mentioned in the initial announcement.
Regardless, this is an all-new IS sedan with fresh exterior and interior. Lexus says the new IS is wider and sits on a longer wheelbase for additional backseat comfort, plus the front seat is thinner for best-in-class knee room. The previous generation’s backseat was so small it made our Car Backseats to Avoid list.
Pictured here is the IS with F-Sport Package featuring a unique grille and front bumper design, as well as numerous interior enhancements to upgrade its performance look. The new interior seems to be a huge step forward over the current generation’s outdated, bland execution. Sporty F-Sport Packages feature an LFA-inspired gauge cluster with prominent tachometer in the middle of the gauges.
A growing trend among automakers' interiors is to include capacitive-touch controls to make the interiors look and function like a personal tablet computer (iPad, etc). The IS is the first Lexus to feature the controls and does so for its climate temperature controls.
The next-generation IS trim range should sound familiar with IS 250 and IS 350 trim levels, though an all-new IS 300h hybrid joins the lineup for the first time in Europe, Japan and other international markets. The U.S. market currently isn't scheduled to receive the IS 300h.
We'll know more about the IS when its specifications and features are fully unveiled at the 2013 Detroit auto show on Tuesday. Stay tuned to our 2013 North American International Auto Show coverage here .