From concept to reality.
At the 2012 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), Lexus debuted their LF-LC Concept that showcased the new emotional and sporty direction that the brand was headed towards. While the same design language has been used in many of its models, the concept remained just a concept – until the 2016 NAIAS when the Lexus LC 500 made its debut.
The LF-LC Concept was the fundamental design focus for the creation and development of the Lexus RC 500. During the entire process, engineers and designers worked together to create a production embodiment of the original Concept model of which it was based.
“The LC 500 has been an important product for Lexus and me personally,” said Akio Toyoda, Chief Branding Officer and Master Driver for Lexus. “A few years ago, we decided to guide the future of the brand with products that had more passion and distinction in the luxury market. This flagship luxury coupe’s proportions, stunning design and performance make a strong statement about our brand’s emotional direction and will grow the Lexus luxury appeal globally.”
Many key elements from the LF-LC Concept have carried over such as the emotional lines and curvaceous forms to create a low, wide, and athletic look. The new Lexus grille is prominently featured at the front fascia with 3-D mesh, flanked by L-shaped daytime running lights and triple-LED headlights. The sloped roofline and sleek silhouette runs to the rear where it meets eye-catching, multi-layered taillights with active rear spoiler and diffuser combo.
The Lexus LF-LC is designed to offer a sporty, athletic driving experience with a high-end ride quality of which a flagship is known. The brand’s new premium rear-wheel drive luxury platform (GA-L) serves as the basis for the new 2+2 coupe with the engine mounted behind the front axle for a front-mid-engine layout. Weight was reduced wherever possible without affecting strength and placed in the best position possible for an optimum 52/48 weight distribution with a low center of gravity. A trunk-mounted battery, optional carbon fiber roof, aluminum door skins with carbon fiber inners, composite trunk floor, and extensive use of high-strength steel all contribute to the superb weight distribution.
Much of the suspension was tuned and tailored to attain the goals of a sporty drive with comfortable quality. Engineers spent more than triple the normal amount of time in R&D to achieve the perfect steering and contact feel. The Lexus LC 500 sports standard 20-inch or optional 21-inch forged wheels with the NAIAS car wearing 245/40 RF21 front and 275/35 RF21 rear Michelin Pilot Sports tires with Premium Touch sidewall technology. Behind those wheels sit six-piton front and four-piston rear brakes to bring it to a halt with ease.
Under the sleek hood of the Lexus LC 500 sits a high-revving 5.0-liter V-8 engine derived from the RC F and GS F models. The 32-valve, naturally-aspirated V-8 produces 467 horsepower at 7,100 RPM and 389 lb-ft. of torque at 4,800 RPM with a 7,300 RPM redline. Under load, a Sound Generator in the Lexus LC 500 optimizing the tuned acoustic plumbing to enhance the exhaust note even more. Reaching 60 mph from rest will take an estimated 4.5 seconds.
The 5.0-liter V-8 is also paired with a new 10-speed automatic transmission for the first time in a luxury vehicle. The gearbox features shift times close to a dual-clutch transmission and is also smaller and lighter than most modern eight-speed transmissions. The closely-spaced gears also ensure that there is a perfect gear for any driving situation whether it’s acceleration or fuel economy.
Inside, engineers and designers focused on giving the Lexus LC 500 a driver-focused, high-end layout with such things as the driver’s hip point being as close as possible to the vehicle’s center of gravity. Little details such as the steering wheel positioning and paddle shifter feel was tailored for driving engagement while high-end materials such as alcantara and leather wraps every piece of the cockpit.
The Lexus LC 500 will also debut the 2017 Lexus Multimedia package with quicker, user-friendly interaction and software with a better graphic interface for users. A Pioneer audio system will come standard while a Mark Levinson system will be available as an option for audiophiles.
Lexus LC 500 Specifications
Displacement: 5.0 liters
Number of Cylinders: V-8
Maximum Horsepower: 467 at 7,100 RPM
Maximum Torque: 389 lb-ft. at 4,800 RPM
Red Line: 7,300 RPM
Acceleration 0-60 mph: 4.5 seconds (est.)
Lexus LC 500 Gallery