As intimated last week, Toyota’s production of its LFA supercar is coming to an end. On Friday, LFA #500 left the assembly line at the secretive LFA Works in Toyota’s Motomachi plant. After a week of testing, the car will be delivered to its undisclosed owner.
The owner is most likely Japanese, because the color of the 500th LFD is whitest white, the LFA’s most popular color, especially en vogue with Japanese customers. It is also the LFA’s trickiest paint job: The base coat is covered with a layer that shines in blue and white under fluorescent light, on top of that comes an enamel coat that in turn is covered by a clear coat.
The owner of the 500thLFA also has ample cash, or at least he did before he paid the bill. His LFA is a Nürburgring Edition (as evidenced by the winglet), $70,000 more bought 11 extra horses and a nice silver-colored oil filter instead of the regulation champagne-colored part.
The LFA, went into production at the LFA Works in December 2010 on a make-to-order basis. Mainly limited by the through-put of the autoclave, where pre-preg CFRP parts had to cure for eight hours, only one LFA per day could be produced .
Sadly, it will be getting very quiet at LFA Kobo, as the LFA Works are called internally. The LFA does not have a successor, nor is anything planned “at the moment,” as we hear from Toyota’s Tokyo spokesperson Shino Yamada.
Most of the 170 workers are assigned to other tasks at Motomachi. Clean room, presses, and the monster autoclave will be used to make parts to supply the 500 LFA in use, and possibly to go into new cars made by Toyota elsewhere. Last we heard, the team did bid to make the roof of car to be built in the Toyota empire. Decision unknown.
TTAC is proud of having received unprecedented access to the LFA works. I was the first reporter who was given free roam of the facilities during series production, camera in hand.You could get into the halls of the LFA if you bought one, but your photographic equipment had to be kept outside. Automotive News’s Tokyo Correspondent Hans Greimel was, according to our knowledge, the only other reporter who was let in. He visited the LFA Works in the final months of production and is still writing his story. Look forward to it.
Apart from making 500 LFA supercars, the facility gained Toyota many years of precious experience with CRFP production. Carbon fiber composite production is the new frontier of car making, and the LFA is one of the few cars with a body made mostly from CFRP, and with most of the body made from hand-laid pre-preg, the most expensive and laborious kind of CFRP.