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2013 Lexus IS 250

$12,532 — $23,076 USED
Sedan
5 Seats
23-24 MPG
(Combined)
Key specs of the base trim
 — 
Compare 1 trims

Overview

Is this the car for you?

The Good

  • Well-executed steering
  • Balanced handling
  • Front-seat comfort

The Bad

  • Pokey V-6
  • Mark Levinson stereo option
  • Tight backseat
  • Firm ride
  • Driver's footwell room in AWD models
2013 Lexus IS 250 exterior side view

What to Know

about the 2013 Lexus IS 250
  • Manual transmission no longer available
  • New IS 250 Special Edition sedan
  • New F Sport Package for convertible
  • 204-hp, 2.5-liter V-6
  • Available AWD

Our Take

from the Cars.com expert editorial team

Vehicle Overview

The five-seat IS 250 sedan and four-seat IS 250C convertible are Lexus' sporty rivals to the BMW 1 Series and 3 Series. Rear-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is optional on the sedan. Competitors include the BMW 128i and 328i, Audi A4 and Mercedes-Benz C300. The more powerful IS 350 plays against beefier versions of those same cars.

The IS 250 and 250C come with a 2.5-liter V-6; the IS 350 and its 3.5-liter V-6 are covered separately in the Cars.com Research section, as is the V-8-powered IS-F.

(Skip to details on the: IS 250C)

New for 2013
The IS 250 is no longer offered with a manual transmission, leaving just the six-speed automatic.

A new Special Edition sedan that hits dealerships November 2012 features 17-inch wheels, F Sport front-end styling and two-tone leather upholstery.
 
The available navigation system features the latest version of Lexus Enform communication system and App Suite smartphone-application integration. The convertible is available with a red leather interior and an optional F Sport Package includes 18-inch wheels, a front lip spoiler, a sport suspension, and heated and ventilated front seats.

Exterior
Lexus' LF-series concept cars influenced the IS 250's styling. A long wheelbase and wide stance help give the IS 250 a muscular look.

An optional F Sport Package for the sedan includes a sport suspension, 18-inch wheels, and front and rear spoilers. Exterior features include:

  • Standard 17-inch alloy wheels
  • Opti...
Vehicle Overview

The five-seat IS 250 sedan and four-seat IS 250C convertible are Lexus' sporty rivals to the BMW 1 Series and 3 Series. Rear-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is optional on the sedan. Competitors include the BMW 128i and 328i, Audi A4 and Mercedes-Benz C300. The more powerful IS 350 plays against beefier versions of those same cars.

The IS 250 and 250C come with a 2.5-liter V-6; the IS 350 and its 3.5-liter V-6 are covered separately in the Cars.com Research section, as is the V-8-powered IS-F.

(Skip to details on the: IS 250C)

New for 2013
The IS 250 is no longer offered with a manual transmission, leaving just the six-speed automatic.

A new Special Edition sedan that hits dealerships November 2012 features 17-inch wheels, F Sport front-end styling and two-tone leather upholstery.
 
The available navigation system features the latest version of Lexus Enform communication system and App Suite smartphone-application integration. The convertible is available with a red leather interior and an optional F Sport Package includes 18-inch wheels, a front lip spoiler, a sport suspension, and heated and ventilated front seats.

Exterior
Lexus' LF-series concept cars influenced the IS 250's styling. A long wheelbase and wide stance help give the IS 250 a muscular look.

An optional F Sport Package for the sedan includes a sport suspension, 18-inch wheels, and front and rear spoilers. Exterior features include:

  • Standard 17-inch alloy wheels
  • Optional 18-inch alloy wheels 
  • Optional xenon high-intensity-discharge headlights 
  • Optional rain-sensing windshield wipers
  • Optional backup camera, front and rear parking sensors

Interior
Up to five occupants can fit inside the IS 250 sedan, though the backseat is tight. Bright electroluminescent instruments light up the dashboard. Black metallic trim is standard.

The optional navigation system's voice-recognition software picks up casual-language commands, and the standard stereo has a USB port to better integrate iPods or other MP3 players. Lexus' Enform service, included with the navigation system, can assist in finding street addresses, restaurants and more. It comes with a year of free service; after that, you have to pay a monthly subscription fee. Interior features include:

  • Dual-zone automatic climate control
  • Power moonroof 
  • Manual tilt/telescoping steering wheel (power version optional)
  • Optional heated and ventilated front seats

Under the Hood
A six-speed automatic transmission is standard in the IS 250. The automatic's steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters give the driver extra involvement when desired. Lexus says the rear-wheel-drive sedan can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 7.9 seconds. Mechanical features include:

  • 204-horsepower, 2.5-liter V-6 with 185 pounds-feet of torque
  • Double-wishbone front suspension 
  • Multilink rear suspension 
  • All-wheel-drive models send 70 percent of power to the rear wheels by default; they can automatically route power 50/50 (front/rear) on low-traction surfaces like snow or ice

    Safety
    Lexus' Safety Connect service, which automatically notifies authorities in the event of a crash, is standard. Like Enform, a year's service is included, but after that you'll have to pay a subscription. Standard safety features include:

    • All-disc antilock brakes
    • Electronic stability system 
    • Vehicle Dynamic Integrated Management, which is meant to integrate all systems to anticipate skids and react faster than an electronic stability system alone 
    • Knee airbags for both front occupants 
    • Side-impact airbags for the front seats
    • Side curtain airbags for both rows

    IS 250C
    The IS 250C convertible has a retractable hardtop that Lexus says can operate in just 21 seconds. The four-seat interior features anti-glare gauges, plus audio and climate systems that automatically adjust their settings to compensate for top-down noise and temperatures. Other safety and luxury features remain similar to those on the IS 250 sedan. However, the IS 250C convertible is not available with all-wheel drive. Back to top

Consumer Reviews

What drivers are saying

4.8
13 reviews — Read All reviews
Exterior Styling
(4.9)
Performance
(4.7)
Interior Design
(4.6)
Comfort
(4.8)
Reliability
(4.8)
Value For The Money
(4.2)

Read reviews that mention:

(4.0)

The best car I have ever owned.

by Nunya Bizniss from Orlando, FL on August 10, 2018

I really enjoy owning this car. I have had car issues with all of my previous cars, but the IS250 seems to show its reliability if you put in quality parts versus using cheap offbrand parts. Read full review

(4.0)

Great car for a single person! Not for family.

by Vegasguy from Las Vegas on July 27, 2018

It?s a great car to own, very reliable and very quick. Super fun to drive. However, if you plan to have anyone in the back seat, don?t even bother. Very narrow leg room. Read full review

Safety

Recalls and crash tests

Recalls

The 2013 Lexus IS 250 currently has 1 recall


Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

Based on 2013 Lexus IS 250 Base

IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal, or poor.

Front

Overall evaluation
poor

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
acceptable
Overall Rear
acceptable
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
good

Moderate overlap front

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Left Leg/Foot
good
Overall Front
good
Restraints
good
Right Leg/Foot
good
Structure/safety cage
good

Other

Roof Strength
acceptable

Side

Driver Head Protection
good
Driver Head and Neck
good
Driver Pelvis/Leg
good
Driver Torso
good
Overall Side
good
Rear Passenger Head Protection
good
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
good
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
good
Rear Passenger Torso
good
Structure/safety cage
good
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers.

Warranty

New car and certified pre-owned programs by Lexus

New Car Program Benefits

  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    48 months / 50,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    72 months / 70,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    48 months / unlimited distance

Certified Pre-Owned Program Benefits

Latest 2013 IS 250 Stories

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The IS 250 received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker