Long term report: Lexus IS300h

Lexus IS300h

This month, I've covered well over 2,500 miles in the Lexus, so she really is seeing the kind of use that these cars would expect to see in the hands of most sales managers.

The refinement and comfort of the IS300h means I'm finding myself picking the keys up to the Lexus when other more sporting stuff is gracing the AOL Cars car park (my normal fare).

Lexus has ploughed a different furrow to the rest of the premium brands, focusing on comfort over sporting pretentions and having covered so many miles, I have to say I think this approach has worked for them.

There are still a couple of frustrations that ruin the overall experience, however.

I've already mentioned the fiddly heating controls. A bi-metal strip in the dash might sound cool, but in reality it is just too awkward to operate. The brakes are also extremely hard to get on with, I've found.

Having covered nearly 5,000 miles, I'd expect to be used to them – however, the regeneration function means they feel like they are either on or off and grab very easily. It ruins what is otherwise a comfortable and enjoyable drive.

Having said that, there is plenty to like about the car and the in-laws (dyed-in-the-wool Mercedes fans) were more than a little impressed with the rear legroom and comfort when I took them to Crown Green Bowls last week!

The knowledge

Model: Lexus IS300h
Price: £38,495 (as tested)
Engine: 2.5-litre, four-cylinder, petrol, electric motor
Power: 178bhp, 300Nm
Max speed: 125mph
0-60mph: 8.4s
Emissions: 109g/km
Mileage this month: 2,669

This month's highlight

A pleasant run to Crown Green Bowls with the in-laws. I even had a go myself!

Author: Andy Entwistle