I'm so glad that I ignored the tepid professional review and took a test drive. This is a well designed car and it stands on it's own with no comparisons to fussy Germans. The 350 has effortless acceleration to the point of excess. It has plenty of legroom in front. I'm 6-2 and actually have to move the seat forward. It's quiet enough to use the speakerphone on the highway with the top down. Better than some sedans with the windows up. Dash and nav are simple and intuitive. Body work is rock solid.
Have had the IS350C for 2 months now. Love the comfort of the vehicle. The interior is great. I even like the exterior styling. It has a big rea, but with that comes 13 Cu. Ft. of Cargo Space, important to me. Acceleration is awesome. I read the review in Car and Driver and have to disagree with their comments. Traded in a 2003 Audi A 4 Cabrio. This Car smokes that and the Audi 5 Conv. A Four Banger with Rag Top, a little dated. The Infinity G37Conv. Tiny inside, with the top down it shakes like a wet dog. The BMW 335i Conv. Nice Car but load it up like the Lexus and its $10K more with less equipment. In my opinion the Lexus beats them all. BMW more Sporty, but Lexus more Cruiser. Suits Me.
After 20 years of driving family sedans and economy cars, I was able to save up the money to by a car for more than getting me around. I chose this car because I thought it would be fun to have a convertible, plus I wanted to have a hard top. I went with this car because I thought the price/feature/quality combination was the best.
Test drove the IS250C but found it lacking in power. Bought the IS350C and the power is exceptional. This car is seriously quick. Red MICA with the light interior, 18" ISP wheel upgrade. Great combination. The 8 speaker sound system with ASL is very good - especially with the top down. Like the new navigation/camera. This is my first rear wheel drive car in quite some time and it really adds to the "fun" factor. The only negative I've found is the optional windscreen. The wind factor is very good without the windscreen and using the windscreen doesn't help much. Don't buy it. Overall, this is simply a great car and the fun factor is over the top.
After looking and test driving the Mercedes, BMW and Audi convertible I have to say I made the best choice this car is the most comfortable and a complete smooth ride with a mix of high end production and style. I got the FSport which makes it even better looking and to all the naysayers out there with the negative reviews this car rocks.
Heated and Ventilated Front Seats With Wood Trim ($1,040), Navigation System With Mark Levinson Premium Audio ($3,890), F-Sport Equipment ($12,471 -- includes shift knob, carbon-fiber engine cover, 19-by-8-inch forged front wheels, 19-by-9-inch forged rear wheels, wheel installation kit, Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 tires, high-flow intake, axle-back stainless exhaust, lowering springs, Bilstein monotube dampers, antiroll bars, six-piston front brake calipers, four-piston rear brake calipers, upgraded discs)
Direct- and port-injection 60-degree V6
3,456cc (211 cu-in)
DOHC, 4 valves per cylinder, continuously variable intake- and exhaust-valve timing
Compression ration (x:1)
Horsepower (hp @ rpm)
306 @ 6,400
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)
277 @ 4,800
Transmission and axle ratios (x:1)
I = 3.520, II = 2.042, III = 1.400, IV = 1.000, V = 0.716, VI = 0.586, FD = 4.083, R = 3.224
The computer didn't like pedal overlap, so there was only a nanosecond of brake torque. Despite being able to scratch the tires on the launch, the best run was recorded without it and ample torque took care of the rest. Manual shift mode was too lazy/hard to predict, so all runs were in S-Drive with ECT "power" mode. Upshifts were smooth but not particularly quick. Exhaust note is cool on the drag strip, but can get annoying elsewhere.
Powerful brakes that are virtually fade-free. Pedal gets extremely hard under full-ABS stops, but is otherwise easily modulated and delicate. Brakes were occasionally noisy/screechy.
Skid pad: Gobs o' grip and good overall balance means only the throttle is needed to maintain a consistent arc. Decent amount of steering info that loads up with speed. Mild understeer on the limit with VSC off, but with VSC on, it dealt effectively with the tendency and actually went a little quicker. Slalom: It seems like the steering ratio should be quicker with all these suspension mods. I needed a bunch more input (about 90 degrees worth) to get past each cone, necessitating *early* turn-in. Tires offer plenty of grip, but fall off quite dramatically once heated. Also, this car will do a "tank-slapper" if you jump out of the throttle too abruptly. Finally, VSA-on runs proved dramatically slower, grabbing brakes and chopping throttle after the second cone to the end.