When you think of the Toyota/Lexus the platforms that come to mind are GSs, SCs, LSs, and of course Supras. Then a few seconds goes by and you say “oh yeah I forgot about the IS”. No matter how many ISs you see, the platform always seems to play second fiddle to those others. But we this is one IS that does standout.
Say hello to BYU’s very own Leroy Taylor and his 2001 IS300. Leroy was first introduced to the IS in 2003 when he joined Team Lexus, the former factory race team for Lexus of North America. Before he ever owned his IS, Leroy was out there in Grand-Am Cup racing watching the cars that he and his teammates built winning races. It wasn’t until 2005 when Leroy decided to buy himself a Spectra Blue Mica 2001 IS as a Christmas gift to himself.
As it is for all enthusiasts, we tend to envision all the different things we want to do to our cars. We fantasize about all the different looks, setups, colors, specs, etc. that we want to one achieve. Leroy has been fortunate enough to have just that. When he first started modding his IS in the spring of 2006 Leroy kept it simple. He slammed it on springs, through on 17” BBS RKs, exhaust, and a C-West kit. Since then the car has gone through a lot of changes. He would eventually ditch the C-West kit for and Wald kit and JDM bumpers, another set of BBSs before up sizing to 19” AME Spec Ms, a TRD CF hood, and upgrading for springs to HKS coilovers.
Just when Leroy thought he was finished, he discovered BN Sports. After moving from Baltimore, MD to Las Vegas, NV in 2009, Leroy parted out his Wald kit for the BN Sports type II kit, sold his AMEs for Work Equips, swapped his stock seats for carbon Kevlar buckets and 6-pt harness, TRD chassis braces, and several additional suspension components.
Leroy never wanted to boost his IS and go very heavy with every top shelf part available. With his professional racing experience behind him he tends to only want to see cars race on the track. Leroy wanted something simpler and easier drive as daily. He wanted a car that he can show with but still enjoy everyday on the street, so opted to keep the car low and slow, while break-neck gorgeous. Leroy’s future plans for his IS are simple. In his words all he wants to do is “drive it and enjoy it.” These days Leroy and his IS can be seen cruising the Vegas streets and garnering attention wherever he goes. So if you’re ever in Vegas, be on the lookout.