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November 4, 2021

Lexus Revamps High-Performance F Family

Lexus is about to diversify its high-performance F family, and things will get, admittedly, confusing.

Announced at the 2021 SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) Show, Lexus’s F family will have four tiers signifying just how much added performance it’ll pack.

As a refresher, in Lexus’s current setup, there are only two: F and F Sport. The F is affixed to the brand’s ultimate high-performance vehicles such as the RC F, IS F, and GS F. You could also say that the LFA was the granddaddy of all that.

However, realizing that owners wanted more diversification, the brand will now re-organize the F family into four: F SPORT Design, F SPORT Handling, F SPORT Performance, and F (the “Sport” in all caps, apparently, is stylistically integrated into the new brand).

According to Lexus, each tier will include a unique range of performance enhancements which they’ve handily summarized:
  • F SPORT Design: For those that appreciate bold and unmistakable style, these vehicles may feature sport-inspired exterior design, including unique front and rear bumpers, grille and wheels.
  • F SPORT Handling will build on Design with sport-tuned suspension components honed at the track, including Adaptive Variable Suspension.
  • F SPORT Performance: In addition to the updated suspension components, these models may receive a higher performance powertrain.
  • F: As the highest expression of Lexus performance, F models will be further upgraded with innovative components developed for the racetrack, including upgraded brakes, advanced aerodynamics and lightweight materials.
If this is still not enough to clue you in, Lexus did give some examples. 

The upcoming NX and LX, for example, fitted with the unique body kit and Adaptive Variable Suspension will become part of the F SPORT Handling family. This is likely the case with the current IS 350 F Sport which will likely become the IS 350 F SPORT Handling. Speaking of the IS, the limited edition V8-powered IS 500 isn’t part of the F family. That one’s named the IS 500 F SPORT Performance. This signifies just how high Lexus’s standards are to gain the F badge.

Admittedly, all this is confusing at first, but it’s very clear that Lexus wants to plug in every customer requirement and niche out there—similar to what the Germans have done whether it’s the BMW M/M Sport/M Performance or the Mercedes-Benz AMG/AMG Line/AMG Sport.

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