The new Lexus IS C is the perfect convertible for those who find the Mercedes CLK too brash.
The new Lexus IS C is the perfect convertible for those who find the Mercedes CLK too brash, the BMW 3 Series cabriolet to obvious, and the Saab 9-3 convertible lacking in status. This is not because the Lexus is superior to its rivals, the BMW in particular is better to drive, but the IS C helps fashion conscious socialites stand out from the crowd. After all, image is everything in this sector.Fortunately, the new IS C has some meat on the bone to support its image - but this particular feast is an acquired taste. The Lexus is designed to be a gentle cruiser, graceful transport from A to B, and a sophisticated addition to the golf club car park. It is by no means a sports car. This is evident by the handling which, although smooth and relaxing, leaves many enthusiastic drivers disappointed and frustrated. This is because there is too much body roll to enjoy cornering, and the electric power steering feels lifeless. There is also a lack of sports car pace as the 2.5-litre V6 engine only produces 205bhp. This heavy-weight convertible therefore takes 9 seconds to reach 62mph through its six-speed automatic gearbox, although it reaches a respectable top speed of 130mph. So, the new Lexus IS C is not the best choice if you want a thrill-a-minute hard core cabriolet that corners like a racing car. But if you fancy gently wafting along with the wind in your hair and a posh badge, it is worthy of consideration. Whereas the handling is unexceptional the IS C is robustly constructed, well equipped, and has one of the fastest folding metal roofs on the market. Prices, according to Motoring.co.uk's new car database, start at £35,025.