Lexus now offers the IS F SPORT with the Dynamic Handling System (DHS), which includes four-wheel steering — Motoring Australia spoke with IS chief engineer Junichi Furyama about the performance advantages this technology has over similar AWD systems:
“All-wheel drive tends to be heavier and the behaviour tends to be understeer,” he explained via an interpreter. “Also in the cornering, the vehicle doesn’t respond to the driver’s intention.
“So I think FR (front-engine rear-wheel drive) base is better and with this system you can turn the steering wheel at the corner more naturally.”
Intriguingly though, while DRS and LDH was judged suitable for F Sport models, Furyama said it wouldn’t feature on future higher-performance cars such as the next IS F.
“The objective of LDH is for a certain level of drivers who are enthusiastic drivers, but not necessarily professional drivers, and they should be able to drive well with LDH. On the other hand the drivers of F like to do the drifting while driving on the circuit. So what we are targeting is different.”
Here’s a video showing the same system equipped on a GS:
Lexus executives in Australia are pushing for DHS in the IS F SPORT mid-cycle refresh, and if successful, the country would be in rare company — Lexus International product and strategy general manager Matthew Callachor explains the dilemma for most markets:
“It’s one of the things we are looking at. It’s not to say it won’t come but it’s a model by model thing and we have to look at the cost as well. It’s not a particularly cheap thing so it’s a case of what the market is prepared to pay.”