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Autotrader Find: 2003 Lexus IS 300 SportCross


Lexus is not a brand we normally associate with wagons, but there was one — and only one — in the brand’s history. It was a wagon version of the original “XE10” generation of the IS sedan, and we found one for today’s Autotrader Find: a 2003 Lexus IS 300 SportCross. It’s for sale in Kirkland, Washington, with an asking price of just under $10,000.

The Short-Lived SportCross

Lexus took the excellent XE10 IS that enthusiasts now adore and turned it into a wagon. It kept the rear-wheel-drive configuration and used the excellent “2JZ-GE” inline-6 engine shared with the Toyota Supra and a couple of other Lexus models including the GS 300 and SC 300. If you’ve ever wanted a 2JZ-powered wagon, the Lexus IS 300 SportCross is your only option. Unless, of course, you get really creative with fabricating a Supra wagon.

One bummer about the IS SportCross is that it could only be had with a 5-speed automatic transmission. A manual SportCross would be too fun, but this automatic-only model still boasts a genuinely great drivetrain.

Sadly, the SportCross name was limited exclusively to the first-generation IS. It didn’t make the cut when the car was redesigned in the mid-2000s, and Lexus never made any other wagons that could bear the name. That’s unfortunate because we would’ve loved to see a wagon version of the GS or even LS over the years.

Gone and Largely Forgotten

The reason why the SportCross didn’t last very long is quite simple. There just wasn’t very much demand for a compact Lexus wagon. The closest Lexus ever came to making another wagon was the Prius-based CT 200h, which was a very different car than the IS SportCross.

The IS SportCross has always been awesome, but it’s especially cool now because pretty much everyone has forgotten about it. You would get a lot of double-takes in traffic by people who didn’t know a Lexus wagon ever existed. Find a Lexus IS for sale

Eric Brandt
Eric Brandt
Eric Brandt is an author specializing in Oversteer content, new car reviews, and finding the best car, truck, and SUV deals each month. Born and raised in Wisconsin, Eric can often be found exploring the north woods on his 1983 Honda Gold Wing when the weather allows it. Father of four, husband of one, and unapologetic minivan enthusiast. Eric mastered driving stick by having a 3-cylinder Chevy... Read More about Eric Brandt

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