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Most entry-level luxury sedans are a compromise between luxury comforts and performance attributes. The horsepower might be there, but the handling might be on the softer side to accommodate as many different tastes as possible. Lexus, however, provides a clever alternative to this compromise -- the company offers two entry-level sedan models, with the IS line specialized for performance.
With its potent V6 engine, sharp reflexes, aggressive exterior styling and the latest techno-gadgets, the IS 350 sedan is certainly compelling. There are some drawbacks, such as cramped rear legroom and uncommunicative steering. But if you're smitten with the IS 350's styling and refinement, it has just enough spice to keep things interesting.
Used Lexus IS 350 Models
The present-generation IS 350 was introduced for the 2006 model year. These earlier cars are pretty much the same as the current model, though there have been a few changes along the way. For 2009, Lexus restyled the grille, retuned the suspension and added a two-tone interior option. For 2010, there were a number of technology upgrades including a new iPod interface, enhanced Bluetooth and a hard-drive-based navigation system (compared to the earlier DVD-based unit). Notably, all 2006-'10 IS 350s were only offered with rear-wheel drive.
Previously, Lexus offered the IS 300. Available as a four-door sedan or wagon, the IS 300 was known for its outstanding driving dynamics but rather drab cabin. It also wasn't as luxurious, roomy or powerful as the current IS 350, but as an affordable used luxury sport sedan, it's worth a look. It was sold from 2001-'05.
If you are looking for newer years, visit our new Lexus IS 350 page.