2014 Lexus IS 250 Misses Consumer Reports “Recommended” Rating

Lexus IS 250 2014 Consumer Reports

The 2014 Lexus IS 250 will not be receive the Consumer Reports “Recommended” rating, according to a new Reuters article:

The Lexus IS 250, which starts from US$35,950 (RM114,051), is “neither sporty nor luxurious” and had the “worst road test score posted by any Lexus sedan in recent memory,” Consumer Reports said in an e-mail. The handling is “short on finesse” and road noise is elevated, according to the magazine, which tested the 2.5-liter V6 version of the car.

“As the Consumer Reports evaluation includes many factors, Lexus is unclear on the cause for the low rating,” Brian Lyons, a Toyota spokesman, said in an e-mail. “We look forward to engaging in a discussion with them to get more direct feedback on their experience with the car.”

Not to discount their opinion, but Consumer Reports is being overly dramatic — why pre-announce their review and then use such sensational language? Contrast the quotes above with this passage about the Infiniti Q50:

Nissan Motor Co’s Infiniti Q50 sedan also failed to get the “Recommended” rating, Consumer Reports said today. While the car posted a “very good” score for its overall road test, it gave an “underwhelming driving experience” compared to its predecessor, according to the magazine’s review.

[Source: Reuters]


  1. Ouch what gives? I test drove the IS 250 and I found it to be up to Lexus standards with good driving dynamics.
  2. The IS250 is superior in every way over its predecessor including NVH and handling. Add top reliability, this car is a winner. This goes to show yet again how credible this organization (CR) is when it comes to testing cars. They lost me a couple years ago when they said the redesigned 2012 Civic was not recommended - what a joke. They should stick to appliances.
    • Perhaps not NVH. Lexus now uses an intake sound generator which generates engine sound directly into the cabin. Where as previous Lexus were about isolation and refinement.
  3. The LOL news of the day...
  4. LOL these guys are beyond dramatic. The IS250 is a great car... what are they using a base comparison a Bently ?
  5. What's the point of an IS250 again?...
  6. I have to agreem I test drove the 250 V6 and being with the IS since the 200 was dissapointed too. I think the old IS250 was way better, the new remote touch is horrible compared to touch screen, the car feels heavier and slower off the mark and the interior looks like the 80's. The IS250 Hybrid was much better in terms of pickup but that was about it. Also the new lights look pretty average on the base model. Overall I was really dissapointed with the new IS 250
    • While I like the 3IS The 2IS was an act of class. 8-yrs on and that car still manages to tin heads. It epitomized the Lexus tradition and the 2IS despite not having hardcore sporty intentions was actually considerably faster than the 3IS. While Akio Toyoda has transformed the Lexus brand. One must ask if the new path is the right pathway for Lexus.
    • MT

      Why is the 2IS faster than the 3IS? They have the same engines and the 3IS definitely has the better grip around corners. I really don't see why the 2IS should be faster.
    • Interior looks like the 80s? Most reviews applaud it for bearing resemblance to the LFA's interior. I don't get the criticism of the new IS here.
  7. Very clear that CR was expecting the same old Lexus virtues, and when they got a car that let engine noise inside, and is designed to engage, and not isolate the driver, that offended the ultra-conservative magazine. Their preconceives notions, and lofty expectations, made them throw a fit when it didn't act like a traditional Lexus. Take this, along with the comparison contest victories in mags all summer long, as a sign that Lexus IS is on a righteous path! Offending CR is a very good thing for the bold new IS. That means Lexus actually hit their mark. BD
  8. tom

    It has been apparent for many years that Consumer Reports opinions on cars are based on all sorts of prejudices and no longer have any relevance. I don't even trust their reliability ratings anymore, especially after they recently claimed that Audi has been quietly improving their quality in recent years. There is no way, no how that Audi will ever build a reliable car, because to do so would go completely against their corporate culture and the attitude of the European unionized labor force, which is like the American unionized labor force on steroids (to borrow a tired cliche). As for the IS250, there are a couple of valid criticisms, both of which are obvious. Its power-to-weight ratio isn't really good enough for it to have any real claim to being any sort of sports car. Yet, its power-to-weight ratio is probably as good as many of the cars that they tout as being "sporty", whatever that means. The IS350 is very different of course. The other criticism is that the base model has polyurethane seat coverings, which no one with any objectivity would regard as luxury. If you get the F-Sport, that is what you get, but you can get the IS250 without the F-Sport package, and if you get the luxury package, you get leather seats. Consumer Reports typically tests and compares only the base versions of most cars, and this leads to many comparisons that don't really make a lot of sense. If they had tested the IS350 with the luxury package, they would have concluded that it is both sporty and luxurious, and would have been very foolish to conclude anything else. Their comments about the Q50 are even more bizarre. Personally I have reservations about the Q50 because of the limited use of physical buttons, e.g., the lack of a physical button dedicated to the air conditioning (as opposed to the whole climate control system). But to say that it is in any way a step back from the prior model is risible. The Infiniti G cars have never been particularly good from the standpoint of ride quality and cabin noise. They have been not much more than two-seat versions of the Z, nearly the same in terms of ride quality and noise, particularly with respect to engine noise and vibration intruding into the cabin. The Q50 is a vast improvement in both respects. It is much, much quieter, and you no longer get the sense that the engine is about to destroy itself, and the ride is not longer the exercise in masochism that it is with the G. And the handling is not significantly changed. The electronic steering is extremely quick and precise, with no significant amount of hysteresis. I did find it necessary to shut off the automatic steering, but there is a button on the steering wheel for that, so it isn't a big deal. It is obvious to me that Consumer Reports' opinions on cars are next to useless.