Lexus LC 500
An LFA In LC Clothing
LFA – those three letters cause auto cognoscenti’s eyes to light up, with dreams of a high-output V-10 redlining at 9,000 RPM (and the fuel cutoff didn’t interrupt the banshees till 9,500), superb handling and incredible sound. Lexus’ first full-on race car for the street, built between 2010 and 2012, tipped the scales at about 3,200 pounds and tipped the wallet at close to $400,000. It was a wonderful car to drive, so I am told — the closest I got to the driver’s seat was a high-speed hot-lap in 2012 around the Long Beach Grand Prix circuit, with pilot Scott Pruett as my wheelman. Now THAT’S a chauffeur!
So when I had the opportunity to enjoy an “Infrared” LC 500 for a week when the car first came out, I jumped at the chance. I could tell from the stats that it would be a thrill and I was right: horses – 471; 0-60 4.4 seconds; and top speed 168MPH. This clearly was not my father’s first Lexus (LS400) or even Dad’s second Lexus (GS400). In fact, the LC is a different breed altogether from the family sedans first produced in the late 1980s and early 1990s. If anything, the LC (“Luxury Coupe”) shares its DNA with the LFA.
The LC comes in two flavors – V-8 and hybrid. Those interested in the hybrid can look elsewhere as I was focused on the V-8, though the hybrid does produce some respectable numbers, too – 354 horsepower (total of gas and electric) and 0-60 in 4.7 seconds while delivering 35MPG highway. The hybrid’s base price is about $96,500.
As these photos illustrate, the car is designed to look like it performs, as a supercar with a snarling spindle grille — there’s no mistaking this car when it’s coming at you. With the great exhaust report, luxurious interior, terrific sound system and exotic looks, the LC 500 is a car built for enjoyment. And at the same time, the base price of $92,000 compares very well to its competition.
I really enjoyed my time with this four-seater coupe. It’s fast, agile, comfortable, responsive, elegant and just flat-out fun. As the Lexus gift to us in honor of its impending 30th anniversary, I say a resounding “thank you!”