The 2022 Lexus IS 500 F Sport Performance has been officially revealed and is promised to be the first in an upcoming line of enthusiast-focused cars from the luxury brand.
We may be a bit late in talking about it but that certainly doesn’t mean it’s not worth discussing. We have a soft spot for Lexus around here as we were one of the lucky few chosen to build an IS-F project car when it was launched back in 2008.
In a way, this new Lexus IS 500 F Sport Performance Sedan is kind of the “final form” of the original IS-F. Just like the OG IS-F, the IS 500 F Sport Performance is targeted to a very specific enthusiast audience.
Lexus IS 500 F Sport Performance engine and transmission
Underneath the bulging hood of this new Lexus IS 500 F Sport is a 472 horsepower 5.0 liter V8 engine with 395 lb-ft of torque. Peak power hits at 7,100 rpm while max torque clocks in at 4,800 rpm.
Effectively, it is the same engine found in the $100k Lexus LC 500 coupe just placed in a more “practical” sedan package.
By the way, all of that power and torque goes straight to the back of the car. No fancy all wheel drive system here; just a raw “light-em-up” rear-wheel-drive set up.
The power is sent through a eight-speed Sport Direct Shift automatic transmission found in the IS 300 and IS 350 RWD models. In our opinion it’s unfortunate that a manual option isn’t on the table but that likely would have been really hard for the product team to sell to the higher-ups.
The engine-transmission combo will propel the IS 500 F Sport from 0 to 60mph in 4.5 seconds which is impressive when considering the 3,891lb curb weight.
All that power and weight makes the Lexus IS 500 F Sport a very hungry beast indeed. Thus the EPA rated fuel economy of 24mpg. However, there is an “eco” driving mode which hopefully helps stretch out that fuel tank a bit.
Suspension and handling
The IS 500 F Sport will come standard with Lexus’ Dynamic Handling Package (DHP) which employs an Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVP) and a limited slip differential. There is also a “rear performance damper” from Yamaha which is meant to reduce any chassis flexing from muscling all that torque around corners.
Stopping power comes from 14 inch two-piece brake discs up front and 12.7 inch discs in the rear.
On the outside the Lexus IS 500 F Sport looks very much like one would expect from a Lexus. Flowing lines with sculpted fenders flowing together as if it were all made in one movement with a fine carving tool. It certainly doesn’t look boring but it isn’t particularly flashy either.
Though, there are subtle hints at its aggressive side for anyone who really studies the exterior. Specifically the aforementioned bulging hood which hints at the 5.0 liter lump underneath. The black chrome exterior trim also keeps things classy while low key.
A rear diffuser surrounds the quad-tip exhaust and a rear lip spoiler adds some extra style and probably a few pounds of downforce.
A set of 19-inch wheels produced by Enkei sit at the corners. The wheels have a “mesh style” design which in our opinion is another subtle nod to the performance that lies underneath.
Inside the Lexus IS 500 F Sport are all the creature comforts we have all come to expect from a luxury sedan in this segment. Plenty of leather and all the “infotainment” tech that one could ask for.
Apple Car Play and Android Auto are both at the ready and visible on a very large centrally located touch screen on the dashboard.
It seems pretty evident to us that Lexus intends for the IS 500 F Sport to be a sleeper sport sedan. Despite the weight, we’re sure this vehicle is a lot faster than most might assume on first glance.
Though, we do wish it was a bit lighter and had an option for a sportier gearbox.
It looks good and will likely sound good if previous Lexus performance cars are any indication.
It should also be noted that the Lexus IS 500 F Sport Performance is going to be exclusive to the North American market. Expect production numbers to below and mark ups to be high.
However, currently there is no official word on MSRP or release date. There is only one production-level prototype in the country at the time of this article so it will possibly be a few months before the sedan hits dealerships.
What do you think about the Lexus IS 500 F Sport sedan? Are you glad that the accountants let Lexus engineers build this sleeper? Or is it too subtle for your taste? We would love to see your thoughts in the comments below. You can also tweet us at @MotorworldHype.
For more, check out the official reveal video and photo gallery below.
Lexus IS 500 F Sport Performance reveal video
Lexus IS 500 F Sport Performance photo gallery