I love chocolate chip cookies. Especially ones right out of the oven. Just the mere anticipation of warm freshly baked chocolate chip cookies fills me with glee. In fact, there is very little I would not do for fresh baked chocolate chip cookies; mow grass, fold laundry, overthrow a country.
The same can be said when Lexus calls and tells me they are sending me a new model for a week. Because just the anticipation of getting a Lexus for a week is like smelling fresh baked cookies.
The most recent call was to set setup delivery of a new 2017 IS200t.
I had the remade IS200t last year. It replaced the IS250 for MY 2016. I really liked it, so I knew that I would like the 2017 model just as well. And of course, I did.
The IS200t is an entry level Lexus sedan that lives below the ES (front-wheel drive) and the GS (rear-wheel drive) mid-size models. The best part is, unlike some luxury sedans, the IS200t isn’t that far out of reach for most of us with a price point just below the base ES 350, but with all the essential goodies that make a Lexus a Lexus.
For 2017, the IS200t gets a bit of a styling update that includes revised front and rear bumpers, front grille, taillights, and there are now 17-inch alloy wheels. Inside there have been some minor updates and there are some new color schemes that have replaced a few older ones. Also for 2017, you can include the Scout GPS Link and there’s an available 10.3-inch screen on the infotainment system along with adaptive cruise control and Land Departure Alert with steering control which are now part of the Lexus Safety System+.
My tester for the week had the optional F Sport package which consists of mainly styling additions like an LFA style gauge cluster, front sport seats that are heated and ventilated, a black headliner, and a sport tuned suspension.
Under the hood however, is the same 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine with 241 horses, and 258 lb-ft torque mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission.
And that’s just fine.
Because for an affordable base price of $37,825, there’s plenty of power and standard features to make the Lexus IS200t one of the best values in midsize luxury sedans on the road today. That’s why I knew my week with it would be a good one.
And I was correct. There’s enough power, comfort, luxury and style to keep one happy for quite some time.
Yes, there are plenty of packages that will drive the price up. Premium, Navigation, F-Sport, Luxury packages, but at the heart of the IS200t is the same engine, and the base model has a lot of standard equipment. It’s like having pecans added to your chocolate chip cookies. You can have a good cookie, or one that’s a bit better. But in the end, you’re still getting a chocolate chip cookie.
In the midsize luxury sedan class, there are a great deal of options; a bakery you might say, filled with all manner of good things. Yes, the A4 and BMW 3-Series can be had for around the same price. But to me the Lexus IS200t is my chocolate chip cookie, warm and fresh out of the oven.
The 2017 Lexus IS200t
MSRP: $ 37,825
MSRP (as tested): $47,823
Engine: 2.0-liter intercooled turbocharged 4-cylinder engine; 241 hp @5800 rpm, 258 lb-ft torque @1650 rpm
Transmission: 8-speed shiftable automatic w/OD
Fuel Mileage (EPA): 22 city,32 highway, 26 combined
Fuel Mileage (as tested, mixed conditions): 25 mpg
Base Curb Weight: 3583
Interior Dimensions (In)
Passenger Capacity 5
Passenger Volume 90.2
Front Head Room 38.2
Front Leg Room 44.8
Front Shoulder Room 55.9
Front Hip Room 54.3
Second Head Room 36.9
Second Leg Room 32.2
Second Shoulder Room 53.4
Second Hip Room 54
Exterior Dimensions (In)
Length, Overall 183.7
Width, Max w/o mirrors 71.3
Height, Overall 56.3
Track Width, Front 60.4
Track Width, Rear 61
Min Ground Clearance 5.3
Corrosion Miles/km :Unlimited
Roadside Assistance Years:4
Roadside Assistance Miles/km: Unlimited
Maintenance Miles/km: 10,000
All specs can be found here (PDF)
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