By on January 15, 2016

2016_NAIAS_Lexus_LC_500_004_95F374BA6129389D4AC952A4EE1FC4E069F08948

If you’ve never been to a press day at a major auto show but always dreamed of being there for all the big releases and parties and executive speeches, I’m afraid I must burst your bubble: The shows just aren’t all that awesome. This year’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit was no exception.

It’s true that there was some fun to be had, but it was mostly the same sort of fun that one has at a high school reunion. I had a blast karting with the Jalopnik crew the Saturday before the show, and I definitely enjoyed hanging out with my friends Matt Farah and Sam Smith late on Sunday. But the show itself was a giant MEH.

BMW launched a car with more letters in its name than most DNA strands. Ford rolled Ryan Seacrest out to read questions from a teleprompter while Bill Ford and Mark Fields read their responses from the same teleprompter, right down to cued laughter. Honda showed off a five-passenger Pilot with a bed. (What? That was a Ridgeline? Well, I’ll be damned.)

In fact, I was pretty much ready to head back to Caesars Windsor to continue my massive Spanish 21 win streak when I remembered that Lexus was going to be showing off some new coupe.

Lexus. Yawn. Okay. Whatevs.

By the time I got to the “Lexus Theatre,” which was really just a sectioned off space in the very back of Cobo Hall, I had no chance of actually getting in — the assembled khaki-and-polo crew was already overflowing out of the area. I was ready to bail on the whole thing when Lexus made an announcement that they’d have some overflow seating in their booth space where we could watch the presentation on video. I decided to head over there, grab about three plates of cheese and Breton crackers, and check out the assuredly boring show.

I mean, come on. It’s Lexus.

But from the moment Akio Toyoda, the CEO of Toyota Motor Corporation, walked out onto the stage, I knew something was different. First of all, he didn’t introduce himself as the CEO. He introduced himself as “Master Driver,” accompanied by some video clips of what appeared to be Mr. Toyoda himself flogging the hell out of some mysterious whip.

Master Driver, eh? What’s that all about?

He then went on to address the feedback that Lexus received after the last NAIAS, which was largely that Lexus makes “nice, boring cars.” Sounds about right, I thought to myself. I mean, sure, Lexus makes some rear-wheel-drive cars with big horsepower numbers, but nobody ever confuses Lexus with BMW. Lexus’ bread-and-butter has always been front-wheel-drive Avalon copies and the RX line of crossovers. When you think of the stereotypical Lexus driver, it’s hard not to picture a woman in her late 30s with a Kate Spade bag and a “MADISYN CHEER ’19” sticker on the back of her lifted Camry.

Then he talked about the LF-LC concept car, a vision shown at the 2012 NAIAS, which pretty much everybody assumed would never be built. The car was gorgeous, even if it was the most egregious example of Predator Mouth that we’ve seen yet. He reminded us of all this by rolling an LF-LC onto the stage. Toyoda went on to say that nobody thought that Lexus would build such a car, and that people thought that Lexus would always be a safe, boring brand.

Then, he drove a fucking stake into the hearts of all those who dared to hate Lexus.

Enter the LC 500: a rear-wheel drive, 467 horsepower, 5.0-liter V-8-powered bullet aimed directly at BMW and Mercedes. And no, it’s not a concept. It’s a production car — one that should terrify every German automaker, and maybe even the pony car stables at Ford and GM. It makes the M2, shown by BMW earlier in the day, look quaint. It was, simply put, the most exciting launch of the show, stealing the thunder of every other automaker in attendance.

And as I pondered the meaning of this new coupe, predicted to be priced right against the AMG and M offerings of the teutonic clans, I wondered if maybe we haven’t been giving Lexus proper credit for a while now. After all, I am not alone in thinking that the IS 350 and its F variants are the best cars in their respective classes. I know that nobody has ever actually seen a GS in the wild, but shouldn’t we have been congratulating Toyoda and crew for having it in the lineup? And the RC is a compelling entry in its own right, especially in F trim.

In a day when BMW, Mercedes, and Audi are trying to be more like Lexus, with expanded crossover entries and front-wheel drive, entry-level cars, shouldn’t we be applauding Lexus for boldly thrusting its middle finger in the air and building genuinely exciting cars, CAFE be damned?

I think we should. I think it’s time that even the most staunch beige-mobile haters grudgingly admit that it’s Lexus and Mr. Toyoda, Master Driver, who have become the best friend an enthusiast could have. At the same show, where nearly all other automakers were slobbering all over the virtual knob of automated cars, Lexus is bringing back cars for drivers. At a show where Ford tried desperately to become some bullshit lifestyle brand, Lexus said, “Nice story, bro. We’re gonna make a better Mustang.”

So to you, Lexus, and to you, Master Driver Toyoda, on behalf of all drivers, I’d like to say one thing.

Thank you.

I probably can’t afford an LC 500 any time soon, but just knowing that you’re making one is likely to ensure that I’ll check out whatever rear-wheel-drive Lexus I can afford when the time comes.

Finally, Snoop will be able to be right. This is a Lexus that flexes, and I think we’ll see it from Long Beach to Texas and everywhere in between.

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107 Comments on “Bark’s Bites: Finally, Lexus Actually Flexes...”


  • avatar
    derekson

    “It makes the M2, shown by BMW earlier in the day, look quaint.”

    It damn well should for twice the price. This is an M6 competitor, not a pony car or M2 competitor. And it’s about 100 HP down to seriously compete in that class.

    Lexus wasted the chance to make something great by not developing a new, special engine for this car. Or maybe they could have used the V10 from the LFA?

    The chassis is supposedly an all new platform that will actually be competitive, the styling is bold and, though not my style, at least attractive to a certain set of people (unlike something like the new RX which is just plain ugly). But people are going to look at 600+ HP BMWs and E63s or AMG GTs and write this off without even driving it.

    FWIW I watched a livestream of this announcement and Toyoda was very charismatic and actually seemed human unlike all the other executives presenting at the shows. And you could tell that he truly cares about making good, fun, exciting cars that people can be passionate about. But I’m not sure Toyota/Lexus is the right company to try to go in that direction, honestly. Beige mobiles worked for them very, very well for a long time.

  • avatar
    30-mile fetch

    I don’t know if it drove a stake into the heart of those who hate Lexus.

    Judging by the comment threads on other articles of the LC500, the hate remains strong and unfazed, with much keyboard racing: The horsepower numbers are too low. Where’s the twin-turbo? The Germans or CTS-V will whip it in objective tests & I don’t care about nothing else. The grill is ugly. Your point about “shouldn’t we be applauding Lexus for boldly thrusting its middle finger in the air and building genuinely exciting cars” seems entirely lost on them.

    The same way the astoundingly-out-of-character LS-F and comparison test wins of the F-Sport IS and GS couldn’t turn their opinions, I doubt this will either.

    • 0 avatar
      Von

      You are probably right that this won’t change opinions that much. However, this being a new model with performance/driver focus as one of its main selling points, it has a better chance than the performance trim of the IS/GS to do so. And in any case, perceptions take years of solid effort and evidence to change. I almost hope it doesn’t (the perception, not the actual cars), the Lexus premium is already getting too close to the Germans.

      To me, the definition of luxury includes not having to worry if your luxury car will leave you stranded. I’ve seen new looking (less than 2 year old for sure) Bimmers and Mercs with not a ding or scratch on flatbeds much too often. A GSF is in my sights for my next car, if wallet department goes as planned.

  • avatar
    Brian E

    Am I the only one who doesn’t like this? The exterior is WAY overdone and I think it’ll age badly. The tan interior pictured on the press car turns my stomach for some reason.

    I don’t think there’s pricing available, but by all indications this will be going up against the S-Class coupe, which has serious presence and is IMO drop-dead gorgeous. I know which one I’d rather buy if I was throwing $100k at a car purchase.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      Really? The all-camel interior was one of my favorite design choices. It felt like a throwback to 90s Japanese Luxury, a category I’m starting to really appreciate even though I was born *in* the 90s and never paid attention to any of those cars when they were new. Many automakers these days are too afraid not to include some wide expanse of black or gray to break up the tan, so the camel interior was a welcome change.

      • 0 avatar
        JimZ

        yeah, I’ve got to agree. the dash is a bit busy (standard practice in Japanese cars these days, apparently) but I think it’s a good thing they’re using *colors* for the interior. I’m so sick of cars having two choices for interior color schemes; you get to choose between either dark gray and light gray, or between black and beige. when I ordered my 2010 Mustang I specifically ordered the saddle tan interior.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      Hideous inside and out. No, you are not alone.

  • avatar

    From Robert Cumberford, Automobile.com:

    “Oh, that horrid front end! Those confusing backlight/side window/pillar intersections. The too- low roof. But above all, that grille…”

    I couldn’t have said it better. And Mr. Cumberford was part of the design team behind the 1955-57 Chevrolets, then went forward to work on many of GM’s greatest hits.

  • avatar
    heavy handle

    This is the type of car that only auto journalists and teenage boys get excited over. It’s got a billion HPs and can only be driven on freshly paved roads (the kind we haven’t seen since before the 2008 financial crisis).

    For a journo, it’s a great car. It means that you will get flown to some exotic (and well paved) location, stay in a luxurious resort, drink a lot, beautiful “Lexus Brand Ambassadors” will laugh at your jokes, and all you have to do in return is to change a few words in a press kit.

    I like fast cars, but that car doesn’t look like it would make it up my driveway, and my driveway is not particularly steep. If it’s a statement car, then the statement is “we’re out of touch.”

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Once you hit the around 300bhp threshold you’ve reached the limit of usable horsepower on state roads, IMO.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        With AWD I’d put that up to around 400 hp, but the principle is sound.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          I’d also add it also depends on at what level of rpm is such bhp achieved. The one coming to my mind now, Northstar, only achieved its 295bhp at 5600 rpm (or 275bhp for the more common LD8 N*). I can count on one hand how many times in my life I have gone above 5500 rpms and two of those were on the racetrack in Vegas.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            5500 RPM isn’t “that” high for peak HP. Most current NA V6s hit peak HP at 6000 RPM or more.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Our lord and savior reaches His maximum torque rating at four thousand holy RPMs and his brake horse power at fifty five hundred hold RPMs. Therefore all His might power is usable for ye proles. So say we all.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            By the numbers the Honda C32 Type I is the 3800’s overseas twin. 200 hp @ 5500 rpm, 210 lb-ft @ 4500 rpm.

            Yet the engines feel so totally different. Numbers aside, even the Type I C32 feels like it wants to rev, where the 3800 is happiest down near idle.

            (The Type II C32 adds a lot more breathing up top; +30 hp but the difference is ALL above 5000. 6200 rpm redline on the Type I, 6700 rpm on the Type II.)

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Might be the difference between OHV and OHC feel.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        Randy Probst – whom I actually think is at least a fair amount credible – claims the benefits of a vehicle with more than 400 HP or so can’t really be realized safely or responsibility on anything remotely approximating public roads in the United States (or many other public road in other nations).

        If I recall correctly, he at least insinuated that using even 7/10ths of a 400+ HP sports or muscle car on public roads was irresponsible and maybe even criminally reckless.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          Bark M. would probably agree with this assessment – yes?

          (Boss vs. FiST)

        • 0 avatar
          stuki

          Stoplight to stoplight, freeway onramps etc., people can very much responsibly “enjoy” > 400hp, if that’s their thing. And, the most important enjoyment of it all, talking about all your hps at the guy in the office/cubicle next to you….

          Personally, lacking any of Mr. Pobsts driving talent, I find by far the most “enjoyable” cars, are the ones with < 150hp. < 100 even better. Driving like an idiot just to keep up with commuter traffic, is just flat out hilarious. At least compared to driving like a commuter keeping up with commuter traffic.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            232 horsepower, a 6 speed manual gearbox with a real hydraulic clutch, and an extra rigid chassis (30,000 Nm/degree works for me).

        • 0 avatar
          dal20402

          I agree with Mr. Pobst on this. I sold my 415 hp hoonmobile partly because I could only exercise its capabilities once in a blue moon.

    • 0 avatar

      This may be the best description of new car intros I’ve ever read.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    “a woman in her late 30s with a Kate Spade bag and a “MADISYN CHEER ’19” sticker on the back of her lifted Camry.”

    I see… nine of these every single day.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      Most of the moms in my neighborhood are these women once they reach their mid- to late 40s. They all drive RXes or MDXes, except for the one who drives an X5 4.4 and (seriously, she’s an insane driver) terrorizes everyone else in the neighborhood with it. I’ve gotten to know the sound of that V8 at full boil from inside my condo.

      • 0 avatar
        Kyree S. Williams

        Lol at the V8 X5 driver. That’s not unlike my neighbor, who has an Infiniti FX. It’s only the V6, but it growls.

      • 0 avatar
        30-mile fetch

        A woman in my neighborhood would probably drive like the X5 terror in yours if she had something like an X5. But she doesn’t, she pilots a Crosstrek. Therefore her reign of terror is limited to obnoxious lane changes and tailgating once she manages to get it up to speed.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Oh God…is this my future?!?!?!?!

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Nah, just don’t put any of those dumb stickers on the car. Why advertise to child abductors?

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        Yes. Your wife says she wants a Navigator, but it’s lies. She wants the RX.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          GX/LX is usable for functions the RX and Navi can perform while the RX is not functional for tasks the Navi can perform.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I saw a new GX yesterday, in white. It’s utterly fck*ng hideous. I’d have to go LX. But that’sa lotta moneys. And also hideous, for that matter.

            So Land Cruiser it’d be. They still look like money anyway.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I mean, what in the hell.

            http://image.automobilemag.com/f/136660784+w660+h440+q80+cr1+ar0/2016-lexus-lx-570-front-grille-02.jpg

            I can’t. No words.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            GX/LX look gross. Better off with the Land Cruiser or 4Runner.

          • 0 avatar
            30-mile fetch

            Shame they stuck the spindle on it, the GX was a decent looking traditional SUV.

            And you could do this with it!:

            http://www.motortrend.com/news/2010-land-rover-lr4-2010-lexus-gx-460-2010-mercedes-benz-gl450/#luxury-suv-comparison-lexus-gx-460-in-air

            Look at all that ground clearance, no wonder it did well off road.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            “Hey, hey what’s that thing?”
            “I dunno, lets LAUNCH over it!”

            Body massage.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            You liked the latest styling exercise on the 4Runner?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            No, but it’s better than the GX grille.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          She would say that the RX is too small and does not have enough HP. She drove our loaner MKZ with the 3.7L last night and thought that it needed more HP.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            Is she going to be upset transitioning from the MKT to a Navigator that has far more weight to pull with the same ponies?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            No. The Navigator has 25 more HP and 110 more lb.ft or torque. It currently has the most powerful Ecoboost V6 in the Ford stable. I think the Navi does 0-60 in the low 6s, which is pretty much the same as the MkT.

            My inner cheapskate may win out and end up with another MkT. Used prices are so good. The problem is that there aren’t that many left. Fortunately, the dealer by me always seems to have 3-5 of them.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      More like 9 a minute here, but they are all driving German and Swedish wagons on stilts, not Japanese ones.

  • avatar

    Too much predator mouth. And looks like you can’t see very well out of the front. But very nice from the side. As for those who think that with 500hp, it’s underpowered, maybe you need a phallocarp.

  • avatar
    VW16v

    Looks better than other production Lexus. But, it also look it will scrape the bottom when going over a speed bump or driveway.

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    The Predator maw seems to have found its way through various vehicles, that and the viper overbite look.

    I do think that this car looks good.

    Being a Lexus it will be reliable unlike the Teutonic offerings.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      as tired as I am of the flat bullnose shape of EU-compliant cars, I think Honda and Toyota have gone too far off of the farm in their styling. Honda’s IP/dashboards are insanity.

  • avatar
    Chopsui

    It’s a $100k fashion accessory. Call me when the Supra version comes out.

  • avatar
    philadlj

    It’s amazing how far the automotive industry has come in terms of power, comfort, safety, and reliability, yet how much that same industry has spun its wheels in the design department.

    This car has NOTHING on the FD RX-7, A80 Supra, or Z32 300ZX. Those cars STILL look awesome today.

    Sajeev would have a vellum field day with this car.

    • 0 avatar
      fvfvsix

      I dunno. I saw a relatively unmolested A80 Supra driving around last week. It has some odd lines, just like this car. I think it’s a case of viewing objects of your younger years through a filter. This car is just as attractive as an A80, and will definitely be viewed with the same filter by those who are fond of it today.

  • avatar
    wmba

    So, has the RCF coupe introduced only 16 months ago with the same engine and claimed highest chassis rigidity in the whole entire world beaten up BMW or AMG? No, it’s a porker with 500 lbs excess avoirdupois over an M4.

    This LC500 coupe is, one presumes, a bit bigger and is on a new chassis instead of the GS/IS mashup of the RCF. Nicer interior, etc.,etc., etc. Lots of carbon fiber, aluminum blah blah blah. A 650i Coupe competitor in other words.

    All that’s left is to drive the beast and see if it cashes the performance checks the looks amd mighty mini Akio Toyoda claim for it, which depends on its weight really. Won’t be surprised if it doesn’t, no matter how many balljoints they managed to cram into the front supension A arms. And a bit of ground clearance would not go amiss.

  • avatar
    JimZ

    It’s great that they’re finally re-discovering performance, but I don’t know what it is with Toyota (and to a lesser extent Honda) where they seem to think “exciting” design has to be ugly or just downright weird.

  • avatar

    She has a nice body, but it’s such a shame about those bags under her eyes and the weird family chin she’s inherited.

    “Why are you crying, dear?”

  • avatar
    Quentin

    I’m just shocked at how close it is to the concept. It will certainly be a head turner out in the real world.

  • avatar
    kit4

    The haters are in full force in this thread. Slap a Mercedes badge on this and the ridiculous grasping at straws insults like too little ground clearance and tan interior when others will be available. It will be a hit.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      All this needs is an all-clad, Nissmo super-terrific-happy-hour body kit.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      Mercedes is incapable of making anything look this ridiculous.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Behold GLA.

        • 0 avatar
          30-mile fetch

          And the bulldog-faced squat-butted CLA.

          Or that angry blob of a GLE that competes with the equally hideous BMW X6.

          But then, I don’t have my Europhile glasses on.

          • 0 avatar
            Brian E

            As bad as as the GLA and GLE are, at least they don’t look like the 3D projection of a noneuclidian horror from the fourth dimension.

          • 0 avatar
            30-mile fetch

            Brian, I love the description. However, I wanted to see what this car looks like without the schnozz amplified by the foreshortening of close range photography. I think the car looks better from a more normal perspective, as in some of the photos linked below.

            http://www.autoblog.com/photos/2017-lexus-lc-500/

        • 0 avatar
          krhodes1

          Nope, not even close. Not that I think either of them is a prize, this is just willfully ugly, just like the rest of the current Lexus line. They used to just be boring. I could live with boring.

          • 0 avatar
            30-mile fetch

            Not willfully ugly? Mercedes stumbled upon that level of pug-faced repulsiveness by chance or incompetence?

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            I don’t find the CLA or GLA particularly awful. It is the current Mercedes design language with FWD proportions. I neither love nor loath the look. It just looks like a Mercedes.

            The Germans can certainly do hideous too – BMW 5-series GT, for example. And I am no fan of the 6 or 7 either. Or any of the X-cars. Audi seems incapable of making a bad looking car, Toyota should steal an Audi guy like KIA did.

    • 0 avatar
      fvfvsix

      @kit4 – just wait until they all find out that this is a harbinger of automotive design for the next 10 years. In 2026, everyone else’s cars will have these design features :)

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    As excellent as this car is, the sad truth is it’s too little, too late.

    People spending 100 large on a coupe (or anything besides an Escalade) want at least one of the following: snobby European badge, prole passing low end torque, electrification. The ONLY exception to this is the Escalade. EVERY other car that has tried to play in this stratosphere without any of those things has failed…. Lexus’ own LS600h included. This is ANOTHER entry without any of those things. This thing’s best shot at success would have been it being a PHEV.

    Really, this thing was just a gift to the disconnected, unrealistic auto press and enthusiast base. When the pen hits the paper, it will be at a German dealer, for something “conventional” like a 911, S-Class, Range Rover, CLS etc etc. You might as well start writing your eulogies now.

    To paraphrase the big homie lunatic BTSR: “Nobody cares about HOW HIGH your V8 revs or HOW EXCITING your Lexus is when you are SITTING IN TRAFFIC!” Lexus has already demonstrated it can build better cars than the Germans…. nobody cares! They will never knock them off the throne because it’s really not so much about the cars.

    And IMO the M2 is more exciting news than this. It costs less than an equally equipped M235i……………………….. and is available with a stickshift. And has torque. And a German snobby badge. For half the price :)

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      Double the snobby badges for half the price – BMW AND M. Lexus? That is what my realtor drives. Yawn.

      But how do you figure the M2 costs less than an equivalently equipped M235i? BMW hasn’t even released the standard equipment list yet. About all they could make standard are Nav and leather.

      I think the M2 is neat, but likely too hard-core for my tastes. And you won’t pay anything as low as MSRP for one for quite some time.

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        M2 options list is here:

        http://f87.bimmerpost.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=1345917&d=1452562035

        M235i equipped the same (with LSD) is about $3K more from what I remember. I don’t know how they did it but I’m not going to ask. Things may change before release.

        • 0 avatar
          derekson

          The reason the M2 is cheaper with comparable equipment is because the M2 comes standard with the manual 6 speed and the DCT is a ~$3k option. The M235i comes standard with DCT and the manual is a no cost option.

        • 0 avatar
          krhodes1

          Thanks, I had not seen that yet!

          It does get interestingly close to a fully loaded M235i at MSRP. You do lose a few things too – color choices inside and out, front PDC, headlight washers, adjustable suspension, sunroof. And while I don’t care, the lack of an AWD option will be a killer for many. The price of the LSD on the M235i is egregious, especially given it is not factory installed. If you want an automatic, it’s free on the M235i, and $2900 for the DCT on the M2. The DCT may be better on the track, but I have to think the 8spd is better in the real world.

          If you are such a track rat to actually want an LSD you should probably get an M2 anyway. Trouble is nobody is going to be paying MSRP for an M2 anytime soon, and I would expect a minimum $4K-5K discount off a full-house M235i without trying very hard. I got $4000 off a lightly optioned Euro Delivery one. So you will be right back to the $8-10K difference. Which I don’t think is all that meaningful on a $54K car, but still…

          How they did it is easy. It doesn’t cost them that much more to make than the M235i, and marketing means it has to be cheaper than the M3/M4, and slower. They won’t make anything like as much profit on an M2 as on a fully loaded M235i. Once the initial madness dies down I’d like to try one – maybe an excuse to do Euro Delivery one last time in my life. Long Beach Blue with a stickshift?

          It does seem VERY un-Germanic that they made so much equipment standard, but they did some of that for 2016 on the other 2s as well.

  • avatar
    Sigivald

    “one that should terrify every German automaker, and maybe even the pony car stables at Ford and GM”

    Not at “AMG and M” pricing, it won’t – you can get *two* GT350s or v8 Camaros for the price of an LC500, possibly with some cash left over.

    They won’t be as nice inside, sure … but that’s why they’re not *competing* cars.

    (I think it looks horrible, but I’m not the target market.)

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      the mistake here is believing everyone cross-shops extensively. Enthusiasts repeatedly fall into that trap. It’s like people (online) who asked me more than once why I bought a Mustang GT. “You could have bought a nice CPO 3-series for the same money!” or “Why would you buy that when a Camaro has more power?”

      The answer is and was “because I wanted a Mustang.” Then they (especially the BMW types) would sniffle about “well, I guess if you’re happy paying for inferiority..”

      Automotive enthusiasts can be some incredibly myopic and arrogant s**ts.

  • avatar
    rentonben

    Park it next to a Nissan and it will make the Nissan look tasteful.

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    “Ugly At Any Speed.”

    Predator grill and angry, raging hips and pointy, pointless creases ANGRY FACE!

    MAW ROAR!

  • avatar
    James2

    My parents are going to take delivery of (yet another) Lexus ES. I said to my mom, ‘You know, that thing is ugly.’ She said, ‘Yeah, but…’ They and probably 99-percent of the Lexus demographic don’t need no stinkin’ Predator grilles disfiguring their Lexi –just as 99-percent of Camry buyers don’t really care if it’s “grounded to the ground”.

    Akio Toyoda might be the worse thing to happen to Toyota. He’s unleashed the Kraken in Toyota’s (untalented, functionally blind) designers, never mind the results.

    • 0 avatar
      Chan

      This is because your mom is not an enthusiast, and feels secure in the ES brand identity.

      Because her previous ES was safe, comfortable, well-made and reliable, she is convinced that her next ES will have all the same traits.

      Plus, women aren’t as visual as men. The car could look like an Aztek and she would still buy it if it offered the same traits as the Lexus.

    • 0 avatar
      RideHeight

      “Akio Toyoda might be the worse thing to happen to Toyota.”

      My impression of him is Jethro gaining control of the entire Clampett fortune.

  • avatar
    Chan

    This car has some problems but no deal-breakers:

    1. It’s chasing a small market. $100k shoppers are usually looking for German or Italian brands.

    2. Its styling still dictates a relatively cramped cabin. This is more of a 6-series/E-coupe competitor.

    3. It needs a bit more power or differentiating tech to play with AMG and BMW M cars.

    I don’t like the angles on new Lexus cars. They make me feel like I’m being slashed to death by five ninjas who mistook me for a slab of raw tuna. But this is one of the best-executed versions of that theme.

    My guess is that it will sell slowly but steadily, like the SC did.

  • avatar
    ajla

    I actually quite like the looks of the current GS and LS. I’m also slightly positive on the styling of the IS, ES, and RC.

    Then again, I loved the look of the McLaren SLR so much I made a “Bandit” version my avatar.

    The LC is a cool car but also likely $50K over my budget. And, if I went used I’d likely lean towards the GS-f or LS460 F-sport anyway.

  • avatar
    la834

    Am I really the first here to notice how closely the LC 500 shares its design language with the new Prius? The “crying” headlamps and taillamps, the door sill character line that suddenly bends upward at a 45° angle ahead of the rear wheel, that sliver of roof that juts into the rear-side and rear windows, etc.

    Inside too – they have almost identical steering wheels

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      “The “crying” headlamps and taillamps, the door sill character line that suddenly bends upward at a 45° angle ahead of the rear wheel, that sliver of roof that juts into the rear-side and rear windows, etc.”

      You are not alone, and described many of the exterior design sins of this car in great detail, accurately, and well, IMO.

      The headlight assembly is awful. The way the trunk deck lid appears lower than the hood (it actually may be) looks discordant, breaks the flow of what could have been any lines and holistic design, and is awful.

  • avatar

    This is all very nice, but let’s see if Toyota and Toyoda manage to keep GT86 alive long enough for it to see the second generation. That takes some real commitment (and coincidentally is more interesting for plebes like myself).

  • avatar

    I’m pretty sure I will own one of these.

    In about ten years time.

  • avatar
    jerseydevil200

    looks like a vacuum cleaner

  • avatar
    JohnTaurus_3.0_AX4N

    A pony car killer? At this price? Who cross shops a Mustang when looking to spend this kind of money?

    Its like saying the Lexus LS is a “better Accord/Fusion/Altima”. Yes, its probably better than those cars in just about every catagory on paper, but c’mon! Those cars dont play on the same field, trying to compare them is crazy, just like comparing this coupe to Mustang.

    Besides, it will probably be like Toyota’s previous psuedo sports cars: 7/10ths there, not good enough. The Supra was a Camaro-killer priced like a Corvette. It fell on its sword and Nissan et al beat them without much struggle (300ZX t/t). The GT86 is a solid effort…by Subaru. Its like they are afraid to make it actually fast, instead we need 8 more special editions that do nothing for performance.

  • avatar
    Lightspeed

    Stunning car, even with that grille it’s gorgeous. It will have plenty of power, and naturally aspirated is for me a selling point. I drive a 2000 GS400 with only 300HP and when I pass on the highway and just ease into the throttle big numbers come up plenty fast for ‘only’ 300 ponies. No downshift, no frenzy, just go. I like that, I am betting there’s lots of other people who do too. They will like this car. And also, this is a Lexus, it will be built properly of great materials. Again, my car is 16-yrs old now and every time I sit in it and drive it, I am amazed at how new it feels. There’s lots of fast hardware out there that will look like crap in 10-15 years of use (my car is a DD in winter too). And again there’s enough people who just want the bloody thing bolted together properly and made of good stuff. Don’t know why there’s all the hate for simple qualities like that.

  • avatar
    DrGastro997

    I think the LC would be fantastic if the engineers from Nagoya go to Hiroshima to learn a lesson in weight killing- gram by gram by gram. The LC seems too heavy on paper. Nevertheless I am ultimately curious how good the LC will be without having to go all the way up to the unachievable, at least for many, LFA.


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