Malcolm Flynn | Feb 21, 2013


The next Lexus IS F performance sedan isn't due for a debut anytime soon, but here’s a look at how the second-generation model could materialise - in both four-door and coupe guises.

Driven by the debut of the 2014 IS sedan and the recent LF-CC concept, we hurled a list of must-have features at artist Theophilus Chin, and this M3-rivalling beast is the result.

For inspiration, Chin has drawn from the existing IS F sedan, along with the LFA supercar, to deliver a preview of what could be on the cards.

A key detail of our concept is the front guard vents, morphed to suit the new IS’ more contemporary Lexus surface language, while aggressive front, rear and profile treatments are in sync with the current F's body mods.

Recent reports of a new Lexus coupe model have also fuelled speculation that a high-powered two-door F car is in the works.

Lexus trademarked the name ‘RC 350’ in November last year, suggesting this coupe will not slot directly into the IS range, and talk of an F model was backed up by the later trademarking of the RC F moniker.

Regardless of eventual bodystyles, we expect the new IS F to make greater use of carbon fibre in its construction, with Lexus confirming it will continue work at the composite specialist Motomachi plant where the LFA was built.

This would help bring weight down from the current IS F’s 1700kg kerb figure, resulting in obvious performance and dynamic advantages.

Lexus is also yet to confirm what direction the new model will take in terms of power source, but reports suggest that the next model could follow the lead of the upcoming BMW M3/M4 models in dropping to a six-cylinder, forced-induction unit.

The Mercedes-Benz C 63 AMG’s replacement is also expected to downsize from 6.2 litres to a 4.0 litre turbo V8 in 2014, all in the name of efficiency and emissions.

2012 lexus is f track test review australia 01

The current IS F’s 311kW/505Nm 5.0 litre V8 records an unimpressive 11.4l/100km combined fuel figure.

A twin-turbo version of the IS 350’s 3.5 litre V6 would likely reduce fuel use, and offer outputs well beyond the current model.

Such a move could cost the IS F its delightful V8 soundtrack, but given the success of Lexus’ acoustic tuning of the LFA’s V10 note, we’re confident they’ll conjure something to impress.

The regular 2014 IS 250, 350, and 300h hybrid models won’t arrive locally until the third quarter of this year, so a production IS F or RC F is likely some way off yet.

No harm in dreaming though...

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