The Lexus IS has now been with us for more than two decades. First introduced in 1999, it celebrated its 21st birthday this year and, to mark the occasion, Lexus hit the compact sedan with a significant overhaul, including a revamped powertrain lineup, an updated interior, and a much-needed tech update in an attempt to keep the sporty four-door relevant in a market that craves crossovers and SUVs.
So, first things first: The 2021 Lexus IS is not actually new. In fact, Lexus still refers to it as a third-generation car internally, despite the "redesign" and repositioning for 2021, which is ultimately more about the products elsewhere in the Lexus lineup, rather than the IS itself. We'll come back to that.