[thrive_drop_caps color=’blue’ style=’2′]The story of Lexus goes as far back as 1983. During that year, then Toyota chief, Eiji Toyoda, gave the go-ahead for Project F, the project tasked with creating the LS 400. It took 6 years, and in 1989 at the Detroit auto show, the LS 400 was revealed to the world.[/thrive_drop_caps]
In the space of 30 years, Lexus has not only matched the established German luxury car makers, but in many ways surpassed them. By 2009, Lexus won the best-selling luxury marque title in USA, for the 10th consecutive year.
Coming full circle to 2017, Lexus is now a dominant player in the luxury segment. And their new superstar is the stunning 2017 LC 500 Sports Coupe.
To arouse your appetite, here is a short quote taken from a first-drive review of the model by Wheels Magazine, Australia. (Click the link to view their review)
[thrive_text_block color=”note” headline=””] With its concept-car-like futurismo exterior (it really is a heartfelt rendition of the LF-LC concept car we doubted they were serious about building in 2012), the new LC may look more fashionable than frightening, but its intimidation factor hits you from the very first moment you stab the engine’s lovely, metallic start button.
The glorious noise of the naturally aspirated and highly strung 5.0-litre V8 is poured into the cabin through a specially shaped “sound generator” tube, which apparently only enhances the barping bellows rather than artificially creating them.[/thrive_text_block]
None other than Toyota chairman, Akiyo Toyoda, launched the LC 500 at the Detroit auto show, earlier this year. That alone is testament to the importance this model holds for the Lexus brand. Watch the launch video below.
Toyoda is also the Chief Branding Officer and master driver of the Lexus brand. What's great about having such an innovative model in the stable, is that the engineering and styling eventually filters down throughout the brand - both Lexus and Toyota.
What about under the hood?
The LC 500 is the first Lexus to use the brand’s all-new, premium rear-wheel-drive luxury platform that does not share with any current Lexus models. The underpinnings of this new coupe will become the blueprint for the company’s future front-engine/rear-wheel-drive vehicles. In an effort to sharpen the car’s handling, the LC 500’s engineers focused on the platform’s fundamentals by placing most of the mass, including the engine and the occupants, in a position more centralized and lower in the chassis to improve the center of gravity.
The heart of the new LC 500 is derived from the proven, high-revving 5.0-litre V8 that is found in the RC F and GS F. It's a naturally aspirated powerhouse that'll push out 351 kw. As with our own Toyota 86 sports coupe, Lexus' engineers seem to favour a more predictable, smooth and natural power-train over a turbocharged engine.
Another remarkable fact of the car is...wait for it... a 10 speed automatic gearbox! The first ever in a luxury car. Lexus said, "The wide bandwidth of shifting afforded by 10 closely spaced gears is ideal for all forms of driving, providing an optimal gear in all conditions."
Wanna hear what the 5.0 V8 sounds like? Check this video out, shot at the recent Goodwood Festival of Speed.
I bet you'd give up your eye-teeth to get that V8 power under your foot! I know I would.
Step inside and the alphabet-soup of features only increase.
The LC 500 comes with Lexus' Safety System+, which includes Pre-Collision-System (PCS), Lane Keep Assist (LKA), Automatic High Beam (AHB) and Allspeed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (All-speed DRCC). Quite a mouthful!
There's so much that can be written on the new superstar in the Lexus stable. For now let's enjoy the sights and sounds from these videos and photos. And if this motoring masterpiece does grace our shores...well, I'm gonna miss those eye teeth man! 🙂