New Car

Lexus gives its revised IS a 472-horsepower V8, first F SPORT Performance line model

A new grade of performance for the Lexus brand has debuted.

Photo courtesy of Lexus

Remember the V8? In a world that's told it's hungry for electric cars, there's also still a large contingent of people who want their cars, trucks, and SUVs powered by a V8 engine. For them, Lexus has created the 2022 Lexus IS 500 F Sport Performance, a model powered by a 472-horsepower, 5.0-liter V8.

Lexus has paired the V8 with the same eight-speed automatic transmission that's in the IS 300 and IS 350 RWD models. The drive mode selector allows for the driver to opt for Sport, Sport+, Eco, Comfort, or Custom drive modes. Drive mode adjustments effect the powertrain, chassis, and air conditioner.

The engine tucks nicely into the recently refreshed 2021 Lexus IS. It has a maximum output of 472 horsepower at 7,100 rpm and 395 pound-feet of torque at 4,800 rpm. That power gets the car from zero to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds. Lexus says that the engine achieves a manufacturer-estimated 24 mpg combined.

Photo courtesy of Lexus

Despite being a monster of an engine, the curb weight of the new IS is just 143 pounds more than the traditional IS 350 F Sport.

It will come standard with the IS RWD F Sport's Dynamic Handling Package, which includes an adaptive variable suspension and Torsen limited slip differential. The car's engineers have added a Yamaha rear performance damper to the model and made brake cooling enhancements - the car now has 14-inch two-piece aluminum front rotors and 12.7-inch rear rotors.

The IS 500 has unique features that separate it from the rest of the IS lineup. This includes a throaty quad exhaust system with dual-stacked tailpipes, a raised hood (up two inches over the traditional IS), 19-inch split-10-spoke Enkel alloy wheels, a revised lower rear diffuser, black rear lip spoiler, and dark chrome window trim. There's also unique black badging on the sides to distinguish it from F models.

Inside the cabin is a heated, leather-wrapped steering wheel and sill plates with black F Sport Performance badging. There's also the IS F Sport accelerator pedal, brake pedal, and footrest. The driver's instrumentation meter has gotten a startup animation unique to the IS 500.

The Lexus keeps its Lexus Safety System+ 2.5, which includes front collision warning, automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, bicyclist detection, emergency steering assist, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning with steering assist, lane trace assist, automatic high beam headlights, and road sign assist.

The IS 500 is exclusively for the North American market. The car's MSRP, options, and exterior and interior color schemes will be revealed ahead of the car's arrival at dealerships in the autumn.

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The new Civic Hatchback just went on sale.

Honda

The Honda Civic is one of the most popular and well-known cars of any type. Honda keeps refining the Civic formula to the point that it seems hard for the car to get any better, but that's what we're here to talk about. The 2022 model year sees the Civic enter its eleventh generation, and updates for the new model year make the car more upscale, more refined, and safer than ever before. Honda released the Civic Sedan first, but the Hatchback is now on the streets. Both cars are excellent, but we want to take a closer look at the 2022 Honda Civic Hatchback. Here are three things to know about the car.

2022 Honda Civic Hatchback The Civic Hatchback is almost as practical as a small SUV, and it's way more fun to drive. Honda

Cargo Space

Looking at the Civic Hatchback, or any modern Civic for that matter, it's easy to start believing that there's nothing to it - that you can't use it as a proper family car. That isn't the case here, nor is it the case with the 2022 Civic Sedan. The Hatchback starts with 24.5 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second-row seats, and the rear bench folds flat to open up even more room for gear. That's shy of a compact crossover, but better than many subcompact crossovers - and the Civic is infinitely more fun to drive than either. The Honda CR-V, for example, offers 37.6 cubic feet of space behind the second-row seats, but the subcompact HR-V offers just 23.2 cubic feet of space. I know which vehicle I'd rather drive, and it's the Civic Hatchback by miles and miles.


2022 Honda Civic Hatchback Clever design elevates the Civic above its competition.Honda

Refinement and Design

Honda's redesign of the Civic started with the Sedan, which released first. Its interior carries premium feeling materials and a grown-up design that is at odds with the Civic's reasonable price tag. There are several clever design touches like a singular metal grille that runs the length of the dash. The front air vents are concealed behind it and feature thoughtfully designed control knobs. It's a detail that isn't seen in other cars at this price point, and it's one that elevates the Civic from a budget car to one that feels special.

2022 Honda Civic Hatchback All Civics come packed with safety tech.Honda

Safety Features and Crash Test Scores

The Honda Civic Sedan and Hatchback both earned Top Safety Pick + awards from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Vehicles earn the honor by scoring "Good," "Advanced," or "Superior" in all categories, including headlights. On top of that, Honda equips the cars with plenty of advanced driver aids, including forward collision warnings, lane departure warnings, collision mitigation braking, and road departure mitigation. Blind spot monitoring and adaptive cruise control are available in higher trims.

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Electric vehicles

NHTSA looking into Tesla's in-car video games

Some owners have discovered that their car's video games work when the car is moving.

Tesla

Tesla's vehicles are among the most advanced and forward-thinking products of any kind, but serious innovation doesn't come with tradeoffs. The automaker has been in the news recently because of issues with how its advanced cruise control systems function, and now, Autoblog reports that the NHTSA is asking questions about Tesla giving drivers the ability to play video games and browse the internet while driving.

Tesla Arcade hands-on: the Model 3 is your video game console youtu.be

The feature is intended to be used while the car is parked, such as while charging, so the discovery that people can use them while driving is a serious one. Vince Patton, the person who filed the complaint with the NHTSA, tested his car and found that he could play Solitaire and a fairly involved action game while it was in motion. Internet browsing was also possible, meaning the driver could take their attention completely off the road ahead for extended periods of time.

Tesla Model 3 Tesla's screens offer advanced functions that many others do not. Tesla

Tesla was already under investigation over crashes involving its Autopilot feature. Several collisions have occurred between Teslas and emergency vehicles stopped on the side of the road. Following the initiation of that investigation, the NHTSA raised other questions with the automaker over a buggy software update that was pushed out, retracted, fixed, and reissued outside of the normal recall process. Despite their names, it's important to clarify that neither the Autopilot nor Full Self-Driving features are capable of driving the cars without driver awareness and input.

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