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2009 Lexus IS 350 photos

The IS 350 has always been a great sport luxury car, but Lexus turns it into a tuner with its line of F Sport accessories. This car features improved handling and an exciting exhaust note.

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Wayne_Cunningham.jpg

Wayne Cunningham

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1 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
Lexus launched the newest generation of the IS in 2006, with the IS 250 and IS 350. The IS then became the platform for Lexus' BMW M3 competitor, the IS-F. Now Lexus offers a la carte F Sport components to hot up the standard IS models.
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2 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
We looked at a 2009 Lexus IS 350 kitted up with F Sport engine and suspension accessories. In addition, Lexus included some cosmetic and handling updates for the 2009 model year.
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3 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
The IS 350 uses a 3.5-liter V-6 with a unique dual-injection system, combining port and direct injection. Visible in this picture is the wide tube of the F Sport air intake.
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4 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
This IS 350 sits lower to the ground than a standard IS 350, because of the F Sport lowering springs. The ride quality is harsher than with the standard IS 350, but the handling is better.
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5 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
Wheels and brakes have also been upgraded with F Sport accessories. These brakes give the IS 350 excellent stopping power, and are easy to modulate with the pedal.
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6 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
Suspension upgrades include Bilstein-sourced shocks, sway bars, and a chassis stiffener. The result is a car that stays flat in the corners.
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7 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
These exhaust pipes are also an F Sport upgrade. They produce an aggressive note.
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8 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
Lexus luxury is evident inside the car, but the cabin electronics have not been updated since the 2006 launch.
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9 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
There aren't any steering-component upgrades from the F Sport accessories, but steering benefits from the rigidity of the car.
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10 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
The speedometer and tachometer on the IS 350 each have an amber, illuminated ring that lights up when you go over a certain speed or push the redline.
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11 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
The six-speed automatic in the IS 350 is fine for normal driving, but a letdown for sport driving. You can use manual mode to hold third gear, which has a wide power band, but the sport mode tends to stay in fourth gear.
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12 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
Paddle shifters, attached to the steering wheel spokes, let you manually select gears.
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13 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
The navigation system in the IS 350 looks good and works reasonably fast, but lacks any advanced features.
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14 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
A Mark Levinson audio system uses 14 speakers and a 300-watt amp to deliver excellent sound quality.

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