SEMA 2008 Lexus IS-F from Fox/Artisan

Fox/Artisan Lexus IS-F

The Fox Marketing/Artisan Performance Lexus IS-F project car scheduled for display at SEMA 2008 has been unveiled early, and brings with it some very exciting news for IS-F owners:

The vehicle will be debuted at SEMA 2008 in Las Vegas alongside 3 other IS-F’s from different aftermarket companies. These companies will be showcasing and developing new aftermarket parts for the IS-F. Artisan will be offering an exhaust, intake, pullies and a turbo kit for the IS-F.

Last time we saw this IS-F it was in mid-build, and the finished project doesn’t disappoint. The flared-out fenders remind me of the 5Axis IS-F from last year, and the burnt orange exterior and carbon-fiber roof are just fantastic. Very tastefully done. [Via: Club Lexus]

Here’s the full gallery:

Pebble Beach Edition of the Lexus LS 600hL Introduced

Pebble Beach Lexus LS 600hL

The first edition of the Pebble Beach Lexus LS 600hL (and the sixth edition of the PB SC 430) will be introduced tomorrow at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance Lexus Fashion Preview. With a limited run of 50, the LS 600hL will be fully loaded and have a number of exclusive touches:

  • Pebble Beach Truffle Mica exterior paint
  • Exclusive two-tone Alabaster and Black leather trim interior with Dark Grey Bird’s-eye maple wood trim
  • 19-inch, five-spoke wheels with a unique finish
  • Pebble Beach interior badging, including some very nice floor mat stainless steel badging
  • Owner’s choice of three distinctive merchandise packages: Callaway Golf Experience, Travel Package or Epicurean Encounter

The PB LS 600hL will be introduced in October. You can click through to read the full press release or browse through the photo gallery:

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2009 Lexus IS Uncovered

2009 Lexus IS Spy Shots 1

It may be an elaborate hoax, but My.IS member nyjinwoo has uncovered what looks to be a brochure for the 2009 Lexus IS 250/350. First thing, here’s an overview of the exterior changes:

2009 Lexus IS Spy Shots 2

The front grille has been given the same extended chrome border and integrated turn signals that were included in last year’s refreshed GS. The revised rear lights have also been changed, though the differences are subtle unless compared with the current design:

2009 Lexus IS Spy Shots 3

Old Lexus IS Rear

The most obvious change is the L-Shaped clear accents in the lower corners, though it also looks as though the rear lights are protruding somewhat. This was something I noticed when looking at the convertible spy shots seen some months back.

Interior shots were also included, and the only change I can see is the wood steering wheel:

2009 Lexus IS Spy Shots 4

2009 Lexus IS Spy Shots 5

If accurate, these changes certainly increase the edginess of the IS (I’m particularly impressed with the chunky rear light treatment), but will it be enough to carry the model through its final three years of production?

[Source: dajapa via My.IS] (Thanks Joaquín!)

A Different Kind of 4-Wheel Lexus

Painted up in IS-F Ultrasonic Blue, this training bicycle is the latest proof of Lexus’ dedication to the environment, and also also highlights their commitment to future owners:

Lexus Training Bicycle

No word on when the bike will be available or what type of distribution channel will be used, but Nürburgring spy shots should be arriving any day now.

[Source: Sharenator] (Thanks Shrawan!)

Lexus RX 400h Sales Growing in United Kingdom

Lexus RX 400h

Although no exact numbers are mentioned, The Auto Channel is reporting that Lexus RX 400h sales have increased in the UK by 28% over last July, which is especially impressive given the current SUV climate in the country:

That [28%] growth stands in stark contrast to the fortunes of rival luxury brands, which suffered an average decline of 30 per cent in SUV sales.

And for some famous names, new registrations have tumbled by as much as 50 per cent.

Lexus attributes the strong showing to the hybrid engine, which sneaks the RX 400h into a lower tax band.

Commenting on the results, Belinda Poole, Lexus GB Director, said: “The RX 400h is the first and remains the only hybrid SUV on the market.

“In what is a tough market overall, this gives our Lexus Centres a great advantage in being able to offer the type of car customers want, but without the penalties in running costs they would incur with models from rival brands.”

I would have thought that the hybrid RX was simply cannabilizing sales from its conventional petrol-engine twin, but the RX 400h was dominating in 2007, making up 86% of all RX model sales in Europe.

It’s going to be interesting to see how the upcoming RX redesign affects the momentum, but it’s clear the hybrid crossover is already the brand’s #1 model in Europe.

[Source The Auto Channel]