Lexus IS (2005–2013)

What's good

Top marque in 2006 J.D. Power UK Customer Satisfaction Study, earning the 2006 Gold Award for a sixth successive year with 873 points out of 1000, well above the industry average of 791 points. May 2007 Lexus achieved record-breaking seventh consecutive J.D. Power Gold Award for customer satisfaction. Joint 1st in 2007 UK J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Survey with 86.8% score.

Lexus IS was top car for customer satisfaction in Compact Executive Sector in 2010 JD Power Survey.

27-05-11: For the 11th year running, Lexus achieved the highest ranking in the annual J.D. Power and Associates customer satisfaction study. The Lexus IS executive saloon achieved the highest overall score – the third time the model has achieved this. The RX luxury SUV was ranked third overall, having claimed the highest overall score in 2010.

May 2010 Lexus IS 2008: 3rd highest first time MoT pass rate (88%) for models numbering more than 2000.

What to watch out for

2.5 V6 petrol engine and 6-speed manual transission is not a good match.

Owners complain of rattles from front passenger door, driver's door, dashboard and speakers. Diesel has a tendency to stall when re-started after having been parked after a short run from cold. Needs to complete its cold running cycle.

Complaints of strange gearing of original 220D models.

Obviously, the bigger wheels with lower profile tyres for 2010 will not go down well with Lexus core customers who prize ride and refinement.

Very high annual VED for Lexus IS250 auto of £485 a year.

Rear brake callipers can seize up and require replacement after as little as 2 years. 2 years is under warrranty, but 4 years wouldn't be.

20-1-2011: 220D now covered by 7 year warranty against cylinder head and cylinder head gasket failures, which is reassuring.

26-1-2012: With 2.2 litre diesels, problems over regenerating of DPFs can lead to overfuelling that can damage the piston rings and bores. Apparently Toyota/Lexus has extended the warranty to 5 years (even on 3 year warranted cars) to cover this.

29-12-2012: Seems to be a problem of keyfob remotes starting to work intermittently on older IS250s, and no known cure.

31-8-2013: 2009 Lexus 220D went into limp mode due to clogged DPF after a succession of short station runs. Also had some electrical problems: boot opening involuntarily, all windows opening: probably moisture in locking and windows ECU.

12-4-2014: Brake master cylinder failed on 8 year old Lexus IS220D. Brought to a stop using gears and parking brake.

20-1-2015: White smoke from exhaust of 2006 Lexus IS220D. Probably cylinder head or cylinder head gasket problem that was common on early examples of this engine in the IS, Verso and Avensis.

5-8-2016: Exhaust front pipes of IS250 V6 engine can eventually rot out and carry several lambda sensors and the cat converter so are expensive to replace at £1,200 for OEM parts.

6-8-2016: Coincidental report of failure of touch-screen of 120k mile 2005/55 Lexus IS250SE. This terminated the nav, whilst also losing screen control and visuals of climate, audio and phone functions, etc. Lexus quoted £2,500 to replace the screen (£500 more than the car was worth). 'Independent' touchscreen repair estimates were £400-£600 plus additional cost and hassle to remove, ship and replace the console.

20-9-2016: Report of 90,000 mile 2006 Lexus IS250 auto needing work to the rear brake callipers every 2 years.

8-6-2018: The Lexus IS220d/IS250 has a security trunk lock/release button in the glove compartment to lock the trunk separately from the trunk relase buttons in the car. The trunk will still open, but only with the key.

28-7-2018: Report of red airbag warning light coming on in aLexus IS250C (passenger airbag recall had already been done). Investigation found that a sensor part for the airbag needed to be replaced. None available in UK. Dealer they sourced one in Europe.

16-10-2018: Report of moisture getting into the locking and windows ECU of a 2008 Lexus IS250 causing it to lower the windows.

22-3-2019: Report of head gasket failure on 2009 Lexus IS220d at 135,000 miles. (May be more than just the head gasket; may be a cracked head.) Repair quoted at around £3,000 and car worth no more than that. Lexus agreed to supply a complete new block (top and bottom) fully fitted with warranty for £4k. Owner obviously aware that its an old car, etc., but it has new tyres that cost £600 and it means he doesn't have to fork out £20k for a newer one.


Autumn 2006 recall to replace front seat belts.

November 2007 recall of 4000 Lexus IS250 & GS350 in the UK requires 3.5 hours of work to replace faulty fuel pipes that are leaking fuel into the engine bay.

26-1-2011: Toyota GB has announced it will recall a number of its Toyota Avensis and Lexus IS 250 models in the UK to carry out modifications to their fuel systems, following customer feedback in other markets. It is working with the Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) to contact registered owners and keepers by letter to advise them of the procedure for taking their vehicle to an authorised Toyota or Lexus repairer for the necessary repair work to be done. The issue affecting certain Lexus IS 250 petrol engine models, produced between August 2007 and February 2009, is related to the fuel pressure sensor. Due to possible insufficient tightening, the fuel pressure sensor could loosen and in very rare cases fuel could leak. There have been no reports of accidents related to this condition.

14-10-2014: report of worldwide recall of Lexus IS, ISC, GS and LS models to repair fuel delivery pipes that could leak and increase fire risk. Toyota Europe will recall about 36,000 Lexus IS, IS C, GS and LS cars for this repair.

4-2-2015: Lexus IS Fuel Sensor Recall now being applied to UK with cars recalled to dealers for the necessary work.

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