• Sep 7, 2010
2011 Lexus IS sport sedan in "Music Track" – Click above to watch the video after the jump

For 2011, the Lexus IS sport sedan is getting a mild exterior styling update. Up front, the grille and bumper are all new, while a new taillamp cover and tailpipe design update the posterior. Not one to be left out of a trend, the Lexus IS is also adding HID headlamps paired with LED daytime running lights. The upgraded lights are standard on the 2011 IS350 and are an option on the IS250. New color choices and wheel styles round out the exterior changes, but the most interesting update happens under the skin with the availability of all-wheel drive on the IS350. Thirty percent of customers opt for the all-wheel drive IS250, but now they can get the added traction along with an extra 102 horsepower.

Enthused about the updates, Lexus created a video of the IS sport sedan performing... a drum solo? In an apparent bid to highlight the precision handling of their IS sedan, fitted with F-sport parts, they pulled together a team which includes composers, a mathematician and a stunt driver. Music and driving go hand in hand and the beat this Ultrasonic Blue Lexus IS lays down is surprisingly good. See (and hear) for yourself after the jump.

Show full PR text
New Lexus IS Doesn't Miss A Beat

* Lexus teamed up with a crew of musicians, a mathematician, and a stunt driver to bring this concept to life.

In a new commercial, the 2011 Lexus IS performs a percussion solo as it hugs curves with precision and power

TORRANCE, Calif. (Sept. 7, 2010) /PRNewswire/ - It all begins in a sleek warehouse where 122 percussion instruments are arranged to create a precision-driving course full of angles and straightaways. Each instrument has a tiny lever. An Ultrasonic Blue 2011 Lexus IS sport sedan revs its engine, wheels spinning as it roars to life to debut its musical prowess. The vehicle navigates the raceway, precisely tripping each and every drum lever on the track, creating a beat as it speeds by, igniting the base, snare, toms and cymbals. Through it all, the IS doesn't knock over a single instrument. As it comes screeching to a halt, the final drum beat is triggered. The new 2011 IS has just laid down its first custom track.

In this latest TV spot from Lexus, which begins airing today, the IS takes on the role of musician to demonstrate that the most exhilarating kind of performance is power wielded with precision.

"We wanted to create a dynamic way to illustrate the IS's agility on the road," said Dave Nordstrom, vice president of marketing for Lexus. "Our engineers strive to develop innovative technology that provides the driver with an exhilarating experience. The concept of creating a music track using drums, levers and the IS showcases the car's precision on the road and offers viewers both an auditory and visual feel for the excitement of getting behind the wheel of an IS."

Designing the Beat
With the help of a team of music composers, a mathematician and a skilled stunt driver, the IS's precision performance was put to the test.

First, Lexus worked with a music production company to compose and design the music track. Next came the challenge of translating sheet notes on a page into a physical track for the car to maneuver. "We had to figure out how to lay out a track that would allow the car to really play a beat," said Nordstrom. To accomplish this, Lexus enlisted a mathematician from a leading university to determine how and where to place the drums based on calculations of the car's speed, the beat of the music and the space allocation on the course.

The third step was to work with a production designer to create a system of levers that would set off the drums when the wheels of the vehicle rolled over them. This task required a precise vehicle and skilled driver to ensure a beat that was accurate within fractions of a second.

Finally, Lexus selected a professional stunt driver, Eddie Braun, to meet the challenge of wielding the IS on the course so precisely that it would hit its mark, every time. Braun utilized the vehicle's performance technology to meet the demands of the course while relying not only on the speedometer to measure speed, but by simultaneously listening for the tempo.

The result of the IS's precision? Music to anyone's ears. "The first time it all came together on rehearsal day, the crew burst into applause," added Nordstrom.

The spot, titled "Music Track," is part of the "Wield Precision" campaign for the 2011 Lexus IS. It can be viewed at YouTube.com/lexusvehicles and during NFL Network's pre-kickoff show, as well as on full episode players online. The campaign will also be featured in an outdoor, print, mobile and online banner campaign, as well as partnerships with Pandora, CNET and in Esquire magazine's October issue and Yahoo! Sportacular iPad applications.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wow the interior is beautiful. Loving the blue color as well. It's a pretty decent looking car, I wouldn't mind owning one of these.
      • 4 Years Ago
      That car screams bic**h magnet.. Drop it lower to the ground and this IS Sedan is a killer.

      I've always loved the IS Sedan.. ever since the first one... which btw still looks better then some new cars..

      The new ISF is going to be a force..
      • 4 Years Ago

      I think cars should do away with incandescent light bulbs altogether.

      HID or next gen LEDs for low beam headlights.

      LEDs for every other socket on the interior and exterior of the car.

      the only filament bulb allowed should maybe be Halogen Infra-Red (HIR) for high-beams, since HID is not that keen on switching on and off all the time, or quick flash-to-pass or visual horn functions.

      The only unfortunate thing about LEDs being used now, is that everybody wants to line them up in a line, so that all of the cars look like they have the same treatment. A bit of originality in the design would be fine.

      I want some proper opitically focused LED fog lights, with amber and warm-white high-output LED elements (proper selective yellow to warm white color bandwidth for fog, not blue or other useless junk that back-dazzles and isn't focused properly.)

      I think the IS headlights look fine with the LEDs. The fascia, the oddly shaped hood, the over-done fender vents, and other things on the IS-F bother me much more.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Q45 had HID headlights with multiple projection lenses, not LED. It was a variant on a HID projector, with 7 lenses.

        R8 has one of the first, if not the first LED headlight element, meaning the main low beam is actually generated by solid state electronics, not just ancillary lighting being LED.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Didn't Infiniti try the LED headlights on the Q45? I don't remember why they gave up on those - they could have blazed a trail in subsequent models like the newer Gs, Ms, or even the FX. There must have been a reason they abandoned the idea.
      • 4 Years Ago
      How appropriate that the sound cut out for me after "it isn't real performance". lol
      • 4 Years Ago
      I think this car is beautiful from front to back. The front end looks so aggressive, and the LED's make it look even better. The rear duel exhaust and spoiler makes it even better. I really like the IS, but I now like it even better since AWD is on the 350. The 250 is a great car as well, but many of us want more power, 306 hp with AWD, I think sales with sky rocket even more. The F package gives the car an ever more sporty look, although NO AWD for that, its still great. This car is truly wheeled with precision.
      • 4 Years Ago
      335 blows this away. seriously.G37 as well. I could go on. Asian posers buy this car.
        • 4 Years Ago
        and all the BadgewhoreMiddleclassWannabees buy pos. bimmers.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Great commercial was great.

      Yamaha Rock Tour drums ftw.

      /drummer person

      Negative points to having LEDs now like everyone else...
        • 4 Years Ago
        n the exhaust note on the LFA...

        Toyota has been a long time partner with Yamaha
        • 4 Years Ago
        The Yamaha reference is kind of fitting because "guess who" tuned the exhaust note for the IS-F.
      • 4 Years Ago
      LED running lights are this year's front quarter panel vent. I similarly predict that the trend will be officially dead when they show up on the next Aveo.

      That being said I think they do look good on the IS.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The car looks damn good... and its not that I like Lexus.. but just look at it.

        Its a looker.. much more a head turn then say.. a 3 series ?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Who cares about the lights? I'm just glad that Lexus finally realized that people who live in parts of the world where it snows want more power too. The reason why 30% of the sales ended up being the IS250 AWD is because people can't drive the damned RWD models up north so almost all the Lexus IS vehicles I end up seeing are IS250 AWDs. Up here it's more like 90%-you virtually *NEVER* see a RWD IS250. It's either an IS250 AWD or someone who opted for the IS350 and even then it's super rare.
        So I'm pretty happy that people in the snow belt can finally get some more horsepower =)
        • 4 Years Ago
        LED daytime lights are become a cliche, and Toyota's being very derivative by implementing them this way in the Lexus IS... that said, it does work aesthetically on the car, and I think it actually looks better. This from someone who hasn't been a fan of the current IS.
        • 4 Years Ago

        I was thinking exactly the same thing. Of all the IS250's I've seen here in Chicago, all of them are AWD. I remember going to the Infiniti dealership, and they had ZERO G35 sedans with RWD.

        I ended up buying the "rare" IS350 here in the Chicago area, and have no problems in the winters after putting on some Blizzaks for the snow season. People freak out the second the rear turns more than normal, so they think that AWD will make it all better. Sure, if you like the initial additional cost of AWD, and increased fuel consumption.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The front fascia is still screwy looking.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I actually think it looks better than past iterations, at least the sport version with the mesh grill anyway.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The IS isn't a bad looking vehicle, but the problem is the front fascia - which is too tame looking for a "sports" sedan; aside from a hohum headlight shape, the small, vertically slatted grill doesn't denote any sense of power/sport.
      • 4 Years Ago
      New taillights? They look the same to me. With the exception of headlights, everything else looks the same.
        • 4 Years Ago
        They could not change it too much... save that for the next gen IS... which IMO is goin to look incredible if Lexus keeps pace.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Bridgestone Turanzas on an IS? That's a terrible choice.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Good question. With the 18-inch wheels, the IS350 was always fitted with RE50A Potenza summer tires. I was thinking that this might be an AWD IS350, but nothing in the back indicates an all-wheel drive car.
        • 4 Years Ago

        I have no clue why Lexus did that... Its going to hurt the IS handing.
      • 4 Years Ago
      precision handling? is? good one :).
        • 4 Years Ago

        the LF-A lost on more track compares vs the R8 V10 (you don´t even need the more hardcore R8 GT) than it has won... the race LF-a was already blown into pices twice during the 24hours at the northloop by the R8´s... 24h reality meets factory laptime record claiming whores
        • 4 Years Ago
        The IS series is consistently towards the top in handling tests. Heck the first year IS-F was tested within a second of the M3 at a few different tracks (roughly 90 second tracks) without the benefit of an LSD (added in the 2nd model year).
        • 4 Years Ago

        I havent seen much R8 vs LFA comparisons. Also u really can't compare the R8 GT in those 24 hr ring races to the LFA since they are in different classes, SP9 vs SP8 respectively.

        Back to the statement at hand. The IS always had pretty good NUMBERS when it came to handling, but the biggest problem they have is the feedback. Hardly any feedback, and not being able to feel the handling makes the car feel numb.
        • 4 Years Ago
        well if the IS350 received suspension bits from teh IS-F it could handle with the best of them
        this is about the only Lexus that does a good job in both handling and luxury

        it is also smaller than most rivals so it could be a nice small sporty sedan if Lexus decided to opt to upgrade the suspension with that on the IS-F

        IS350 AWD with IS-F suspension would definitely be up there with the 335 and G37S
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