Lexus might be renowned for offering luxury and daring design, with Toyota reliability, but the brand has often also dabbled in performance cars.
Japan’s greatest ever automobile was a Lexus, the incomparable LFA. To challenge perceptions around the Lexus brand, its South African division has now added two new models.
The RC F and RC F Track Edition are a world removed from the conventional realm of Lexus luxury sedans and SUVs.
These are true driver’s cars which will appeal to the enthusiast. Lexus rivals for the new RC F models are German vehicles such as the AMG C63 coupe and BMW M4.
In a market where large naturally-aspirated engines have become a rarity, Lexus is offering the R CF with an atmospheric 5-litre V8.
This engine produces 351kW and 530Nm, providing the RC F with a linear throttle response which differentiates the way it delivers performance from other turbocharged coupes.
An eight-speed automatic transmission channels the 5-litre V8’s power to RC F’s rear wheels and with the car’s launch control function enabled, it should run 0-100kph in 4.5 seconds.
A Lexus for keen drivers
Both new Lexus coupes run on model-specific Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres and feature multi-link rear suspension, to ensure excellent high-speed tracing stability.
If the standard RC F is too tame in appearance for your liking, there is a Track Edition upgrade, which is mechanically similar but a lot more expensive and somewhat lighter.
For R779 900 over a conventional RC F, the Track Edition adds a host of carbon-fibre styling upgrades, Brembo carbon-ceramic brakes and lightweight BBS alloy wheels. Add in a composite roof and bonnet and the Track Edition is 82kg lighter, which lowers its 0-100kph time to 4.3 seconds.
The most significant benefit of its lighter weight is cornering agility and braking performance, whilst a custom titanium exhaust system enhances the Track Edition’s V8 bark over the standard RC F.
Cabin upgrades for the Track Edition include a Mark Levinson sound system. For those who seek individualization, these new Lexus coupes could provide a dynamically able alternative to the dominant German vehicles in class.
The standard RC F retails for R1 318 300, with the Track Edition car notably dearer: at R2 098 200.
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