It was in November of last year when the latest-generation Lexus IS entered our market and rekindled the sports sedan segment. Back then, it came in two variants: the IS350 F Sport (P3,808,000) and the IS300h Premier (P3,328,000). Now, the Japanese luxury automaker expands the range with the arrival of the Lexus IS300h.
Naturally, the h stands for hybrid, which essentially means this sporty sedan is powered by the same 2.5-liter inline-4 gasoline mill paired with an equally potent electric motor found in the IS300h Premier. The difference between that variant and this new offering is the price: it comes in at a tad below P3 million.
At just P2,978,000, the IS300h is the most affordable IS in the range. Yet don’t let the word affordable fool you into thinking this is a bare bones Lexus (if there ever was one). On the contrary, you get all the goodies we’ve come to expect from the marque.
You still get synthetic leather seating with 8-way power adjustment for driver and front passenger, a power tilt-and-telescopic tiler with paddle shifters, an infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity and Voice Recognition capability, Park Assist Monitor to aid in reverse maneuvers, and an interior with Takumi craftsmanship.
Beyond the luxury, the Lexus IS300h is first and foremost, a sports sedan. This means it’s got underpinnings like a rigid architecture, front double wishbone and rear multilink suspension that were honed at the Toyota Technical Center’s Shimoyama Test Track, and the aforementioned gas-electric powertrain that puts out 220bhp and 163lb-ft of torque.
Mated to Lexus’s E-CVT gearbox, it allows the IS300h to sprint from 0-100km/h in just 8.7 seconds while still being able to drive in full EV mode for certain distances or when idling in traffic in order to save fuel and reduce toxic emissions. It essentially is the best of both worlds.
Check out the Lexus IS300h at Lexus Manila.