Lexus has revealed its new LC 500 coupe at a key motoring event in the US. The car is the first vehicle produced by Lexus to feature its new rear-wheel-drive platform and will make use of a number of innovative materials to reduce weight and improve performance.
Visitors to the Detroit motor show were treated to the first look at the LC 500 that will feature a 467 bhp 5-litre naturally aspirated V8 – similar to that found in the Lexus RC-F and GS-F.
Akio Toyoda, chief branding officer and master driver for Lexus explained the LC 500 is a crucial addition to the carmaker’s line-up and signals the future for the high-end motor company.
“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,” added Mr Toyoda.
Lexus has confirmed the car will be capable of 0 to 60 mph in less than 4.5 seconds, due to the engine offering 467 bhp at 7100 rpm. One of the key features of the LC 500 design is a specially-fitted sound generator that will allow more of the classic V8 sound to be heard inside the car.
In addition, the LC 500 has an active exhaust with a ‘Sport mode’ to help give the car a more aggressive exhaust sound when started-up – there is no doubt this is a car designed to draw attention!
The coupe will also benefit from an innovative ten-speed automatic transmission that aims to produce shift times usually seen on dual-clutch setups. The transmission is linked to an electric control system that forecasts the driver’s inputs by tracking acceleration, braking and lateral g forces.
The cars styling has been heavily influenced by the Lexus LF-LC’s design concept, with the front of the LC 500 featuring a new grille with 3D mesh design.
One of the most distinctive features is the LC 500’s profile with a sloped roofline, which complements the optional active rear spoiler.
The overall look of the car is completed with machined cast aluminum 20-inch or the alternative 21-inch forged aluminum wheels.
Inside the car, Lexus’ focus has been on offering the latest multimedia experience, with a digital dashboard and a Pioneer audio system fitted as standard.
Drivers will also benefit from a whole range of innovative safety features including the All-speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (All-speed DRCC), the Pre-Collision System to reduce potential accidents, Lane Keep Assist to ensure vehicles remain in their lanes and Automatic High Beam to maximise forward visibility at night.
In terms of comfort, the interior design boosts a lot of leather as well as focusing on the driver’s position to ensure good ergonomics.
“At an early stage, the designers collaborated with the engineers to understand their image for the LC 500’s driving dynamics, and they incorporated this into the design,” explained Tadao Mori, the chief designer of the LC 500.
“For example, we gave serious consideration to where the driver’s eyes would focus, and designed the surface shape in that area to help support a driver’s mindset. This project was one of the first times that designers were closely involved in the dynamic engineering development so we could understand the driving goals and support with the car’s design.”
Details of price and launch date have yet to be confirmed by Lexus, but it is expected LC 500 coupe will go on sale before the end of 2016.
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