Tony O'Kane | Oct 29, 2010

LEXUS F SPORT

Lexus Australia CEO Tony Cramb has confirmed that performance-focussed F Sport models will become a fixture in the company's line-up, with the IS range the first to feature F Sport variants.

In addition to the IS 350 F Sport (launched in Australia earlier this week), the IS 250 F Sport becomes the new mid-spec model in the IS 250 range, and benefits from the same aesthetic and handling upgrades as its more powerful stablemate.

The upcoming CT 200h - due to launch in Australia in the first quarter of 2011 - will also have an F Sport variant, which will include sportier styling and mild suspension enhancements.

While straight-line performance will be unchanged, cosmetic and mechanical upgrades will bring extra visual appeal and a slightly more entertaining drive.

In other words, F Sport will be to the Lexus CT 200h what an AMG Sports Package is to a Mercedes-Benz C-Class – a mild but appreciable improvement.

Other Lexus models are likely to get the F Sport treatment in the near future too. Mr Cramb said a GS F Sport could be a possibility, although such a car would likely have to wait until the arrival of the next-gen GS, due sometime in 2012.

lexus is 350 f sport usa 02

However, Mr Cramb told TMR that there are currently no plans to offer the F Sport-branded performance accessories currently available in the United States as dealer-fit options in Australia.

These accessories include performance-tuned Bilstein shock absorbers, lower and stiffer springs, 19-inch forged alloy wheels, thicker swaybars, chassis braces, six-piston brake calipers with two-piece rotors, high-flow engine intake piping and a performance exhaust system.

The F Sport performance parts are currently available on the US-market IS 250, IS 350, IS convertible, GS 350 and GS 460.

- Tony O'Kane

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