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2021 Lexus IS is a sharp little number

The powertrains might be carryovers, but the IS' new exterior makes for a breath of fresh air.

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andrewkrok.jpg

Andrew Krok

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Even though it might look different, the 2021 Lexus IS still packs many of the same underpinnings, which means this new compact luxury sedan doesn't feature a massive price hike as part of its many updates.

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A base IS 300 with rear-wheel drive will cost $40,025, including $1,025 for destination, an increase of $440 over the 2020 IS 300 RWD.    

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It's the only trim level that will net you Lexus' 241-horsepower, 258-pound-foot four-cylinder engine, which mates to an eight-speed automatic transmission. 

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Somewhat confoundingly, adding all-wheel drive to the IS 300 replaces the I4 with a 3.5-liter V6 producing 260 hp and 236 lb-ft, and the transmission loses two forward gears, dropping to six.    

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This variant will set you back $42,025, which is actually $10 less than the 2020 model is priced. Hmm.    

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If more power is on your list, there's the IS 350 F Sport, which takes that same V6 and bumps the power up to 311 hp and 280 lb-ft while adding a bit more aggression in the looks department.     

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The IS 350 RWD uses an eight-speed automatic, while again, moving to AWD removes two cogs from the equation.     

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The rear-drive IS 350 will cost $43,925, an increase of $1,145.    

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Throwing in two more driven wheels raises the window sticker to $45,925, which is $1,095 more than the 2021 model.

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Keep scrolling or clicking to check out even more pictures of the 2021 Lexus IS.

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