In addition to its striking good looks, the 2010 Lexus IS 250 offers a high quality interior, a compliant drive, available all-wheel drive and a solid reputation for build quality and reliability.
While the 2010 IS 250 possesses capable handling and sporty features, one must be mindful that this is still a Lexus, and as such, the main emphasis remains on luxury and comfort. It actually makes a good choice for drivers who value the look and ambiance of a "sport sedan", but who really don't want the firm drive and fast acceleration thrills that come with it.
Trims, Standard Features And Options:
The 2010 Lexus IS 250 is a compact luxury sedan available in two trims: RWD (rear-wheel-drive) and AWD (all-wheel-drive).
The nicely equipped 2010 IS 250 includes standard features such as leather upholstery, 8-way power front seats, a sunroof, dual-zone automatic climate control, keyless entry, keyless ignition, foglamps, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel, 17 inch wheels, an auto-dimming mirror, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, the Safety Connect telematics system and a 13-speaker audio system with a 6-disc CD changer, satellite radio, a USB audio jack, an iPod interface and an auxiliary audio jack. In addition, the IS 250 AWD adds heated front seats.
Available optional features for either model include adaptive cruise control (with automatic transmission models only), an automatic parking system, HID headlamps and headlamp washers. The optional navigation system also comes with voice commands, a rearview camera, Bluetooth phonebook downloading and upgraded telematics features. In addition, there's a 14-speaker Mark Levinson surround-sound system that can also be added to the navigation system.
The available Luxury package includes driver and front-passenger memory settings, a power-adjustable steering wheel, auto-dimming exterior mirrors, automatic wipers, the HID headlamps and a power rear sunshade. This package includes cooled seats on AWD models, while RWD models also get perforated leather upholstery, wood trim, heated and cooled seats, and 18 inch wheels (except for the wheels, these features are part of the Premium Plus package available on the RWD model).
Also available on the RWD model is the Sport package, which includes a sport suspension, the 18 inch wheels, summer tires, sport pedals and most of the Luxury package features. Many of the Lexus F-Sport performance accessories are also available.
Engines, Powertrain And Gas Mileage:
Powering the 2010 Lexus IS250 is a 2.5 liter V6 engine that generates 204 horsepower and 185 pound-feet of torque. It's mated with either a 6-speed manual or 6-speed automatic transmission. Rear-wheel drive is standard, while all-wheel drive is available to automatic-transmission models.
The EPA-estimated gas mileage with rear-wheel drive and the automatic is a very respectable 21 mpg city and 29 mpg on the highway. Fuel economy for the manual comes in at 18 mpg city and 26 highway, while the all-wheel drive is rated at 20 and 26, respectively.
Standard safety features on all IS 250 models include antilock disc brakes (ABS), stability control, traction control, front-seat side airbags, side curtain airbags and Safety Connect (telematics with automatic collision notification, stolen vehicle locator and an emergency assistance button). Also available as an option is the Pre-Collision System (packaged with adaptive cruise control) which pre-tenses the front seatbelts, stiffens the suspension and activates brake assist when an imminent collision is detected.
In government crash tests, the IS 250 was given five stars (out of five) for front-passenger side-impact protection and four stars for both frontal crash protection and rear side-impact protection.
Clearly, one of the IS 250's top attributes is its outstandingly designed cabin. It is sporty, refined and well-constructed with high-grade materials. Lexus also is well known for one of the best and most user-friendly electronics interfaces available. This is particularly true with the optional touchscreen navigation system, often a confusing feature with other automakers.
As a compact luxury sedan, rear-seat accommodations are tight. Long trips in the rear seats will likely be a challenge for many adults. While the seating is comfortable and supportive, overall space is actually very much like that of a luxury coupe. Perspective buyers should be aware that the IS 250 was never intended as an ideal "family sedan".
While the 2010 IS 250 may look the part, it's really not trying to win buyers over with sport sedan road manners. While it certainly possesses capable handling, the IS 250 isn't impressively quick or athletic. While most drivers will be satisfied with the 250's acceleration and handling, the primary emphasis is on Lexus' traditional premium comfort and luxury standards. With its pampering cabin and comfortable ride, the IS 250 is a pleasurable place to spend road-time.
How To Get The Lowest Price:
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2010 Lexus IS 250:
IS 250, RWD, manual: list price: $32,145, invoice price: $28,929
IS 250, RWD, auto: list price: $33,315, invoice price: $29,983
IS 250, AWD, auto: list price: $35,775, invoice price: $32,196