Lexus IS 500 F SPORT Performance in “License to Thrill” 

(Lexus now has a License to Thrill)

Earlier this year, Lexus launched its reimagined MY’21 IS sports sedan, proving the richest experiences come to those who go “all in” with their obsessions. This fall, it’s bringing to market the vehicle that auto enthusiasts asked for, the first-ever IS 500 F SPORT Performance, with a 472-horsepower, naturally aspirated V8 engine. It’s the most powerful IS ever and the ultimate expression of going all in.

A new marketing campaign for the IS 500 has launched, featuring the “License to Thrill” documentary. 

 “License to Thrill” follows 14 auto enthusiasts, as their driving skills were put to the test for a chance to be the first five people in the country to own the IS 500 F SPORT Performance. Lexus invited the 14 hopefuls with varying amounts of driving experience to APEX Motor Club in Arizona. First they got pro tips from Lexus IMSA Drivers Townsend Bell, Jack Hawksworth and Aaron Telitz.

Then, each driver had a shot at posting the best lap time in the IS 500, pushing their own limits to gain the slightest edge. The film reveals who celebrates at the podium, who is among the first to own the IS 500, and who receives the surprise of a lifetime – an IS 500 free of charge.  Watch below:

REELated: Creative sparks fly in new Lexus campaign

“Auto enthusiasts asked us to create a V8 version of the IS sports sedan, and Lexus answered their call with the first-ever IS 500 F SPORT Performance,” said Vinay Shahani, Lexus vice president of marketing. “We couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate our passionate enthusiasts than creating a race for the chance to own it before anyone else.”  

In addition to “License to Thrill,” the IS 500 marketing campaign includes digital and print ads in auto enthusiasts and lifestyle outlets. A variety of media partnerships will provide entertainment that appeals to the competitive spirit, including: 

  • MotorTrend – In “V8 Throwdown,” professional driver JR Hildebrand will take viewers on an exhilarating ride through the history of the V8—stopping at iconic places and meeting legends in the world of automotive. And of course, he’ll be behind the wheel of the IS 500. 
  • GARAGEISM – To celebrate the IS 500 F SPORT Performance, GARAGEISM will create a special editorial publication that embodies Lexus’ unique perspective on automotive performance, design and prestige within its 8th edition. 
  • 100 Thieves – A custom Lexus Content House episode will feature the IS 500 in a high-stakes competition. 

James Bond might actually be a little jealous.