Posts Tagged ‘lfa’

Lexus Teases Open-Top LF-C2 Concept Ahead of LA Reveal

Posted by Stephen On Wednesday, November 12th, 2014

Today we have perhaps our most epic Los Angeles Auto Show preview yet. It’s an all-new sports car concept from premium Japanese automaker, Lexus. This, ladies and gentlemen, is our first glimpse at the open-air Lexus LF-C2 Concept:

Lexus LF-C2 Concept Teaser

We already knew that one of Toyota’s other sub-brands, Scion, would be debuting the Scion iM Concept in LA, but we had a sneaking suspicion we’d get a peek at something more exciting before the show’s doors open next week. Sure enough, this sleek open-top convertible comes along and lives up to the hype, complete with a thematic 72 Hour Eclipse Reveal planned for the concept’s debut.

Lexus plans to release at least one more teaser of their new LF-C2 Concept before its LA premiere. We’ll either get to see the spindle grille, wheels or interior, determined by a fan vote taken at Lexus’ promo page for the new concept (linked above). Be sure to head over there and vote for the interior preview! 🙂

For those of you wondering, there is not an actual eclipse of any kind happening in LA (we already checked). Apparently Lexus didn’t get the sun on board with their promotional campaign.

2012 Lexus LF-LC Concept

2012 Lexus LF-LC Concept

All joking aside, this preview is actually quite a mystery. It doesn’t need to be said that Lexus is keeping tight-lipped about their newest concept, and the automotive blogosphere can’t seem to reach a consensus either. Here are just a few of the guesses other sources have made:

  1. Revived Lexus SC 430 (which was discontinued in 2010)
  2. Convertible version of the 2012 LF-LC Concept
  3. … Which could also preview a convertible Lexus RC
  4. Replacement for the Lexus IS Convertible, as a follow up to the Lexus LF-CC Concept
  5. New version of the Lexus LFA supercar
2014 Lexus RC F

2014 Lexus RC F

Personally, our guess is option 2/3 – the new Lexus LF-C2 Concept will preview a convertible Lexus RC. Maybe even a Lexus RC F convertible too, if we’re lucky. Our reasoning is simple, but sound; the 2012 Lexus LF-LC Concept was widely agreed to prequel the new Lexus RC, and LF-C2 sounds awfully similar to LF-LC. The other likely option is a new replacement for the Lexus IS Convertible.

That being said, we secretly hope that the Lexus LF-C2 Concept will preview an LFA-inspired, commercially accessible open-air sports car. But we hesitate to even say such a thing out loud, lest we jinx the possibility.

Whatever the LF-C2 concept is that being, Lexus is going the extra mile to make its reveal as exciting and engaging as possible. The “Eclipse Reveal” isn’t just the theme behind this particular teaser; it’s also the name for Lexus’ 72-hour social media campaign in which they’ll reveal the car bit by bit. Or, you can plan ahead to watch the live stream press conference at 1:40pm PST.

 


Lexus RC 350 F SPORT Coupe Coming to Geneva Motor Show

Posted by Stephen On Tuesday, March 4th, 2014

Lexus RC 350F Sport

Lexus has just officially previewed their newest addition to the Lexus RC coupe lineup ahead of the Geneva Motor Show next week. It’s the Lexus RC 350 F SPORT, and as you can see, it looks pretty swell. As you continue reading, we’ll go through the press release and other sources to give you a good idea of what to expect when the car makes its official debut next Tuesday.

As you can see, the Lexus RC 350 F SPORT features a substantially enhanced look over the standard RC coupe. Most notably, it gets the signature F SPORT mesh spindle grille and exclusive 19-inch F SPORT alloy wheels, complete with gun-metal finish and dark metallic paint.

But, as great as the RC 350 F SPORT looks from the exterior, it looks even better from within.

Lexus RC 350F Sport Interior

Notice the vibrant Rioja red leather and silver trim coupled with the black perforated leather around the steering wheel, creating a simultaneously luxurious and edgy interior design. That front dash looks like it’s hiding a plethora of new features and technologies, but we’ll have to wait for Geneva to find out for sure. However, if you look closely at the center console you’ll see a feature which some of our readers may recognize from the old Lexus LFA supercar. It’s a moving center ring which allows the driver to shift into Sport+ driving mode. While in this driving mode, the Lexus RC 350 F SPORT coupe essentially heightens its senses, reportedly, “allowing the driver to feel improved body control and precise responses to steering input.”

Even without Sport+ mode though, the Lexus RC 350 F SPORT boasts vastly improved driving operation. This is largely due to the advanced Adaptive Variable Suspension which will automatically adjust the dampening on all four wheels depending on the vehicle’s motion and road surface conditions. This, coupled with the Lexus Dynamic Handling system – a combination of Dynamic Rear Steering and Variable Gear Ratio Steering – make for a car that performs even better than it looks. Basically, the Dynamic Handling System allows the RC 350 F SPORT to slightly adjust the angle of the front and rear wheels independently for that slight edge in handling at both high and low speeds.

We don’t know too much about the technology featured in the powertrain itself, but we know that it will be a 306hp V6 with RWD and 277lb-ft of torque at 4800 rpm. We’re sure that Lexus will reveal even more when the newest RC Coupe officially debuts next week in Geneva. Lexus also apparently has another RC F-related surprise for us, so you’ll have to stay tuned next week to see exactly what that is.

Until then, thanks for reading!


Lexus Promises Two New Cars We’ll See More of in 2014

Posted by Stephen On Thursday, December 12th, 2013

We have two big pieces of news this week coming from your favorite premium Japanese car maker, Lexus. They’ve confirmed that (a) we will be seeing a production-ready version of the Lexus LF-NX concept car to debut at the 2014 Geneva motor show early next year and, (b) Lexus is already in the process of turning the LF-LC into a range-topping halo sports car sometime in the near future, although we don’t know anything more specific than that.

As you continue reading, you’ll learn everything that we know about these two new premium cars coming from Lexus in the short-term future.

Lexus LF-NX Production Model

Lexus LF-NX

As you may remember, we first saw the Lexus LF-NX in early 2013 at the Frankfurt Motor Show, then again as a Turbo version with a turbocharged gas-only powertrain at the Tokyo Motor Show last month. Earlier this week, Lexus confirmed that a production version is already in development, and that they intend to unveil it at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show.

The Lexus LF-NX is a midsize crossover, and a good-looking one at that. Thankfully, Lexus has assured us that they are aware how well the concept’s expressive design has been received, and that they’re going to do their best to maintain it into production.

Since Lexus has shown us two different versions of the LF-NX Concept so far, it seems safe to assume that those are the starting points they’ll use for production. The first version from Frankfurt featured a hybrid powertrain with a 2.5L 4-cylinder petrol and an electric motor paired together. The Lexus LF-NX Turbo from Tokyo featured a 2.0L 4-cylinder turbocharged petrol, which Lexus says offers “a fast throttle response and exhilarating performance while demonstrating outstanding fuel efficiency”.

Production of the Lexus LF-LC Concept

Lexus LF-LC

The Lexus LF-LC Concept predates the LF-NX concept by a few months, making its first appearance at the 2012 Detroit motor show late last year. We’ve recently learned that Lexus is almost certain to develop this into a production model.

Although all of this is unofficial, Haruhiko Tanahashi, the engineer behind the Lexus LFA, recently interviewed with Autocar and hinted that he “personally hopes the LF-LC will be built.” He also very suggestively noted that “most of Lexus’s concept cars have been turned into production cars.” The unspoken assumption there being that the Lexus LF-LC is no exception. As usual, the blogosphere is all over this, whipping it up into a frenzy.

So let’s do a little more whipping, shall we?

Well, Lexus has already confirmed that they’re planning to bring a new halo sports car to their lineup. In fact, their planning to bring several more high-performance F models to their lineup (like the Lexus RC-F, which is expected to debut at next month’s Detroit Motor Show).

All in all, this is excellent news for Lexus fans, since both of these concepts were very well received. The Lexus LF-NX will be a long overdue midsize crossover, filling an important slot in the luxury brand’s lineup. The LFA sequel may not sell quite as many units, but will also serve an important purpose for Lexus.

Either way, we’re sure to know more early next year, so stay tuned until then and thanks for reading!


Lexus LFA Production Ends, But Its Legacy Lives On

Posted by Stephen On Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

Last Friday marked the final day of production for the Lexus LFA supercar, as a white Nürburgring Edition rolled off the assembly line for the last time at the top-secret LFA Works guarded within Toyota’s Motomachi plant. With a powerful V10 engine delivering an amped 562bhp, a pure snow-white paint job, and several other tweaks like a silver-colored oil filter (internal aesthetics are important!), the buyer of the final LFA is certainly a lucky one. And a wealthy one too… The circuit-tuned LFA is the most expensive Japanese road car to ever actually see production with a hefty $445,000 price tag.

Production of the Lexus LFA began on December 15 of 2010, exactly 2 years ago. Lexus only produced 500 of the high-performance supercars; due to the complexity of the production process, only one car could be built per day, and always to the buyer’s custom specifications. Even after rolling off the assembly line, each and every vehicle goes through a week of rigorous testing to ensure that it meets Lexus’ standards for its first supercar.

Lexus LFA on production line

What makes the LFA so unique and so complex to manufacture is the fact that Lexus produced their own carbon fiber reinforced polymer, or CFRP, in-house. In fact, LFA Works possesses one of only two circular looms on the planet, which weaves together the extremely strong, but extremely light CFRP for the car’s A-pillar. It is a testament to the LFA’s intricacy that even with a team of 170 hand-picked workers, only one vehicle could be produced per day.

Even though the last LFA has been produced, don’t expect this to be the end of Lexus’ dabbling in high-performance vehicles. According to a press release, “this marks the end of a key chapter for Lexus, one in which people’s perceptions and understanding of the brand have been challenged, and perhaps changed forever.” In other words, this focus on luxury performance over plush extravagance will continue beyond the Lexus LFA, “it will be fondly remembered for being the car that marked the start of significant change for the Lexus brand.”

There is no doubt that the Lexus LFA has been deemed a success for the Toyota-owned luxury manufacturer. The LFA is the culmination of nearly 10 years of development. The LFA’s Chief Engineer, Haruhuko Tanahashi, says “I’ve lived and breathed supercars for the past decade, specifically one supercar – the LFA. Very few people have had the opportunity we had: to create a world-class supercar from a blank sheet of paper.”

Unsurprisingly, the LFA been extremely well received by consumers, and because of its limited production you can expect to see this car remain highly sought after for years to come – despite the fact that many lesser supercars can easily outrun it. However, it could still be said that the development and production of the LFA was more of a learning experience than anything else. According to Toyota, “CFRP production took place in-house in order to gain valuable know-how to be used in future products.” In other words, you can expect to see the lessons learned from the LFA applied to vehicles from both Lexus and Toyota in the future… I, for one, can’t wait to see how!


Jay Leno Takes Topless Lexus LFA Out On It’s Home Track By Mount Fuji

Posted by Stephen On Monday, October 8th, 2012

Fans of car aficionado and late-night giant Jay Leno got a treat the other night on his popular show “Jay Leno’s Garage,” as the comic veteran took the Lexus LFA out for a spin in the car’s homeland. Making a stop first at Toyota City where Leno watched the LFA being built, the all-things-car expert then traveled to world renowned Fuji Speedway where he took the Lexus LFA out for a spin.

Unique Open LFA

But it wasn’t just any Lexus LFA Mr. Leno took out onto the track in Oyama, Japan; rather it was a white, roofless speedster that is the clean-air version of the sporty Lexus. While Leno said that the V10 was the only roofless car to be made, savvy car buffs will remember back to 2008 when a maroon roofless version was on display at auto shows (of course, maybe it wasn’t running back then and has since been repainted). Well, the one thing that he did have right is that the car is indeed, roofless. There’s no hidden storage of the roof anywhere: it simply wasn’t made with a roof, detachable or otherwise.

Regardless, Leno’s joyous reiteration of the phrase, “Oh, my God” as the supercar deftly handled the curves while hugging the track at Mt. Fuji were enough to let anyone know just how he feels about this car: superb. Proclaiming that no other care feels as “refined” as this Lexus, it was quite clear that Leno was taken aback by the innovative design, precision handling and brilliant craftsmanship that went into the car.

Lexus LFA Manufacturing Process

Earlier in the day, Leno visited the plant where the LFA is made and discussed the textile weaving process that the carbon fiber tub that holds the LFA together is constructed from. This structure is essential in allowing the LFA’s build to be stronger than steel, yet lighter than 20 kilograms. He also spoke about the intricate construction process, during which no worker is allowed to touch the car with their bare hands, instead having to wear gloves throughout the entire assembly process. Coolant is pumped at thirty-two square pounds of pressure runs through the door frame at all times, winding up in the rear radiator, which is essential in helping to cool  such a powerful engine.

Whatever the case may be, one thing is for sure: the Lexus LFA was built for class, speed, elegance and luxury and I would not be surprised to see one joining Jay Leno’s extensive car collection after his latest trip to Japan.


Rare 2011 Lexus LFA at Auction In Japan

Posted by Stephen On Friday, February 10th, 2012

Toyota’s answer to the supercar makers of the world is a stunning performance machine — but unfortunately the price has proved to be even more stunning: This one at auction in Japan today has a start price of 39,800,000 … and eye-watering $513,000 USD at today’s rate. You can get a couple of Italy’s finest for that kind of money. Not to mention a GT-R that will at least equal the LFA in performance.

Any takers?

Well, let’s see what the auction sheet says. First of all, it’s a grade S, which basically means a brand new car. It only has 57KM on the odometer, so just enough to have driven out of the showroom and around the block a couple of times. Here’s the rest of the translation:

“Grade S, interior A, first registered in July 2011, ASG 6-speed transmission, HDD navigation system, rear view reversing camera service book, black and red interior, Mark Levinson premium sound system, semi-Aniline leather seats with heaters, leather instrument panel, red stitching, silver polish steel AWs, red calipers, red CFRP steering wheel”

Click the image below to see more details:

Lexus LFA 2011 white model at car auction in Japan