2012 Lexus IS 350C vs. Its Competition

2011 Lexus IS 250C 2-door Convertible Auto Angular Front Exterior View
Bengt Halvorson Bengt Halvorson Deputy Editor

In this pack of luxury-brand convertibles, the IS C has more of a performance edge than the Volvo C70; the front-wheel-drive Volvo has great seats and a roomy trunk however.

The Mercedes-Benz E-Class Cabriolet feels heavier and more grown-up, but it's a lot more expensive.

The Audi A5 Convertible sticks with a traditional soft top, but its interior is absolutely stunning.

Those seeking a little more performance might consider the Infiniti G37 Convertible, though its retractable hard top is done in steel rather than the IS C’s lighter-weight aluminum.

Other than the G37, the IS C's most direct rival is probably the BMW 3-Series Convertible.

The IS 250C simply doesn't keep up with the base six-cylinder 328i Convertible, but compared to the 335i Convertible the Lexus IS 350C offers a comparable feature set at thousands less.

2011 Lexus IS 250C 2-door Convertible Auto Angular Front Exterior View2012 Lexus IS 350CBrowse Used Listings2012 Audi A5 2-door Coupe Auto quattro 2.0T Premium Plus Angular Front Exterior View2012 Audi A5Browse Used Listings2012 BMW 3-Series2012 BMW 3-SeriesBrowse Used Listings2012 Infiniti G37 Convertible2012 INFINITI G37 ConvertibleBrowse Used Listings2012 Mercedes-Benz E Class 4-door Wagon Sport 3.5L 4MATIC Angular Front Exterior View2012 Mercedes-Benz E ClassBrowse Used Listings2012 Volvo C70 Inscription2012 Volvo C70Browse Used Listings
Quick Specs
7.8
A strong powertrain, usable backseat, and tight retractable hardtop make the 2012 Lexus IS 350C very enjoyable, even if it feels somewhat conservative.
8.4
Both the Audi A5 Coupe and its Cabriolet convertible sibling are striking designs that offer comfortable, easy-to-drive capacity for two people--and four in a pinch
8.4
The 2012 BMW 3-Series delivers the class-leading sport-sedan performance and handling enthusiasts have come to expect, yet it makes substantial improvements in fuel-efficiency, active safety, and connectivity.
7.8
The Infiniti G37 Convertible doesn't suffer the usual styling compromises, but it's a little less exciting to drive than its Coupe cousin.
8.2
The 2012 Mercedes-Benz E Class models have sharper driving appeal than in the past, while also returning to the classy interior appointments and vault-like construction that have made them longtime luxury benchmarks.
8.2
With a healthy dash of Scandinavian style and Volvo's excellent reputation for safety, the 2012 C70 makes a solid all-around choice for a hardtop convertible.
MSRP From     
$46,640$37,100$34,900$46,650$49,800$40,450
Gas Mileage     
19 MPG City / 27 MPG Hwy21 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 34 MPG Hwy16 MPG City / 25 MPG Hwy15 MPG City / 32 MPG Hwy18 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy
Engine     
Gas V6Turbocharged Gas I4Turbocharged Gas I4Gas V6Gas V6Turbocharged Gas I5
EPA Class     
SubcompactSubcompact CarsCompact CarsSubcompactSubcompact CarsSubcompact
Style Name     
350C 2-Door Convertible2-Door Coupe Manual quattro 2.0T Premium4-Door Sedan 328i RWD SULEV2-Door Base2-Door Coupe E350 RWD2-Door Convertible T5
Drivetrain     
Rear Wheel DriveAll Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveFront Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity     
445444
Passenger Doors     
N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Body Style     
ConvertibleCoupeSedanConvertibleCoupe2 Door Convertible
Transmission     
Automatic w/manual shiftManualAutomatic w/Manual ShiftAutomaticAutomaticAutomatic