Toyota continues to infuse its Lexus brand with a fresh personality and a renewed sense of purpose. The brand has become more daring in its design and has embraced performance as a key differentiator.
Helping to reinforce its new penchant for design and performance even further is the launch of the brand’s new flagship coupe, the 2018 Lexus LC 500.
Unveiled for the first time at last year’s Detroit Auto Show, the LC 500 was intended to squash any notion that Lexus-branded vehicles are boring to drive for good.
The LC 500 is sleek, sexy, and exudes the emotional appeal that Toyota Motor Corp. President Akio Toyoda wants all Lexus vehicles to embody. Unlike the LFA supercar that helped Lexus become a bonafide supercar builder in 2010, the LC 500 offers more than just performance. At $92,000, the coupe blends athleticism with technology and luxury.
Power is derived from a 5.0-liter V8 engine that produces 471-horsepower. It’s the same powerplant found in the high-performance RC F coupe and GS F sedan. Compared to those models, the LC 500 has a wider stance, bold 21-inch run flat tires, and an even more upscale interior that’s bathed in high-quality finishes.
Lexus is also offering the LC 500h, a hybrid variant with a starting price of $96,510. This model combines a 3.5-liter V6 engine with two electric motors for a combined power output of 354-horsepower.
The standard LC 500 can sprint from zero to 60 mph in just 4.4 seconds, while the hybrid model will require 4.7 seconds.
Riding on the all-new Lexus Global Architecture, the platform that underpins the LC 500 will also be used for the upcoming 2018 LS flagship sedan. That also means that styling and features within the new coupe will also find their way into other Lexus models in the not too distant future.
While it is unquestionably beautiful and sporty, the LC 500 is unlikely to be a hot seller. Sales of premium luxury coupes are on the decline as luxury vehicle shoppers are clamoring more toward crossovers and SUVs. But while it may never become a best-seller, the LC 500 hints at the future of Lexus It also adds even more energy and excitement into the lineup as Lexus evolves more into a global luxury lifestyle brand.