2023 Lexus IS500 V8 to be built in right-hand drive – for Japan


Despite claims the IS500 would only be for North America, rumours suggest the V8-powered sedan is coming to Japan in right-hand-drive… but not Australia.

Ben Zachariah


The 2023 Lexus IS500 is expected to be announced for the Japanese market this week.

Lexus teased a photo of its IS sedan on social media late last week, with local media reporting the premium brand will soon launch a V8-powered IS500.

It appears that has since changed, with Creative Trend reporting the IS500 F Sport Performance First Edition is set to be produced in a limited run for the right-hand-drive Japanese market.

Just 500 vehicles are to be produced, according to the report, with buyers to be selected via a lottery system.

Given the IS500 is only being produced as a limited-edition model for Japan, it’s unlikely the current model will a return to Australia, given the investment needed to make it meet regulations – despite buyers here having a long history with V8-powered sedans.

Under the bonnet of the US-market IS500 is a 5.0-litre naturally-aspirated V8 petrol engine – previously seen in Australia powering the Lexus RC F and LC coupes, and GS F sedan – sending 352kW and 536Nm to the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic.

Weighing in at 1765kg, the Lexus claims a 0-100km/h sprint time of just 4.5 seconds.

The 2023 Lexus IS500 is expected to be unveiled for the Japanese market on Thursday 21 July 2022.

Ben Zachariah

Ben Zachariah is an experienced writer and motoring journalist from Melbourne, having worked in the automotive industry for more than 15 years. Ben was previously an interstate truck driver and completed his MBA in Finance in early 2021. He is considered an expert in the area of classic car investment.

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