The BMW 3 Series-rivalling Lexus IS is will soon be available with the four-cylinder turbocharged 200t petrol engine from the NX crossover.
Developing 241bhp, the 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo will do 0-62 in seven seconds flat and keep accelerating to a top speed of 143mph. Fuel economy is quoted at 39.2mpg while CO2 emissions are rated at 167g/km for road tax of £205 per year. For comparison, a new BMW 330i will do 0-62mph in 5.9 seconds and emit just 151g/km.
Power will be sent to the rear wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox.
Lexus has also confirmed the same engine will be fitted to the RX SUV, carrying the RX 200t badge. This engine was confirmed for the RX at the Shanghai Motor Show in April, but until now wasn’t expected to go on sale in the UK.
In the IS, the 200t will join the naturally-aspirated IS 250 and hybrid IS 300h. The new turbo is the least economical IS model, but will become the fastest when it goes on sale in September – slicing more than a second off the IS 250’s 8.1-second 0-62mph time.
Lexus says the car’s intercooler, which uses water, ‘provides strong advantages in acceleration, and delivers a 0.3-second reduction in the 0-62mph time compared to an air-to-air unit.’ It also claims to have used an electric air bypass valve to ‘greatly reduce characteristic turbo noise’.
Prices and specs will be announced shortly before the car goes on sale in September. The NX 200t F Sport currently commands a premium of around £1,000 over a similarly-specced Hybrid, so we can expect a similar price structure for the IS saloon.
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