Bill Clinton once unsuccessfully tried to redefine what “is” is. The seller of today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Lexus has been far more successful in redefining what an IS300 is, but will its price prove unimpeachable?
They see me rollin. They hatin. See me ridin’ Batman... Wow, fully 83% of you couldn’t see paying the asking on yesterday’s cheeky mini-me Batmobile 1991 Geo Tracker. Alas, just further proof of how far the once great Geo name has fallen, so much so that even Batman can’t rescue it.
Oh well, I’m over it.
Today it’s not IT we’re going to talk about, but IS; this 2002 Lexus IS300 to be exact. Now, the IS is considered by Lexus to be their 3-series competitor and was released in Japan under the name Altezza which is Italian for getting high, or something like that. Here in the states it came as the IS which stands for the high and mighty Intelligent Sport.
Also here in ‘Murica, they came with Toyota’s sexy girlfriend of an engine, the 2JZ-GE. That came with 217-bhp on tap, and, by the time this ’02 rolled out, the car came with a choice of either DIY or Don’t-You-Touch-Me 5-speed transmissions.
This one has the stick, only it has amazingly grown a sixth gear. That former Supra box is mated to the turbocharged version of the DOHC straight six, the 2JZ-GTE, which of course is Toyota’s Rhonda Rousey of an engine. In this installation, that mill is claimed good for churning the back tires to the tune of at least 400 ponies.
Those horses are said to have been corralled by a company called PowerHouse Racing, and the ad drops a lot of other names that have gone into the conversion. Yes, the engine is intercooled, and no that intercooler doesn’t stick out like a herniated navel as is often the case on such modded cars.
In fact, at first glance, the mods on this IS are not readily evident. You actually have to start opening things up to see all that stuff that’s been done to it, and considering what has been done, you just might want to start popping portals.
Doing so you’ll find on the inside a cool set of Recaro SR3s that have been fabric-matched with the rear seats. There’s also a custom triple gauge pack where you’d normally toss your sunglasses eschewing the expected A-pillar locale, and of course a rad stereo.
That sound system extends into the boot area which looks to have been converted into a bass box in its entirety and which features two flat screens in its lid. Up front the engine compartment looks clean and the turbo install looks professional. Also, oh so much blue.
On the outside, the 53,000 mile car seems in excellent shape, and aside from a subtle body kit and aftermarket wheels, looks pretty stock. Well, it’s now time for you to take stock in this custom Lexus’ price, which is $17,000.
What’s your take on this IS for that kind of scratch? Is that a deal for what appears to be a tastefully modded edition of one of Lexus’ most desirable rides? Or, does that make this an IS that just plain isn’t?
H/T to @bspeed3 for the hookup!
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