Ride and handling
If those plentiful Nürburgring laps pay off in any area then it’s in the chassis. There’s some real balance and fine control to how the IS drives, while Lexus’ engineers detailed a laser screwed and bonded platform for added stiffness. Those taut underpinnings give the suspension a good chance, and it works, as the IS delivers a fine compromise between ride comfort and control. In all but the F Sport model it’s conventionally sprung, while F Sport buyers are given the choice of Adaptive Variable Suspension, it bringing two modes of operation, though you’ll be hard pushed to really spot the differences between the Normal and Sport settings. Best then to leave it on the standard set up, in which case the F Sport’s suspension is a bit firmer, to the benefit of steering response, which feels more alert.
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Even the standard suspension on the F Sport does little to upset the IS’s ride comfort, which helps it be one of the more comfortable cars in its class. Not quite the standard bearer for agility admittedly, BMW’s 3 Series still bettering the Lexus dynamically, but there's enough talent to wish the chassis was given a drivetrain choice better suited to enjoying it.