2015 Lexus RC F Preview


Lexus RC F Preview

Last week, Lexus invited me to the Monticello Motor Club, where I was able to test drive the all-new RC coupe in all its various forms. The following is a technical overview of the RC F — my personal impressions will posted early next week.

As the first new F-badged Lexus in nearly five years, the RC F super-coupe has some big shoes to fill — consider this:

  • It’s the first mass-production high-performance vehicle from Lexus since the IS F was introduced back in 2007, and
  • It’s also the first coupe in the lineup since the LFA supercar ended its production run last year.

With the IS F production run now finished and no replacement in sight, the RC F will exist as the sole high-performance vehicle in the Lexus lineup.

It’s a heavy burden, but the RC F is no ordinary machine — it’s a 467 horsepower monster, built with an exceptional level of performance enhancements and full of lessons learned during the development of the IS F, IS F CCS-R racecar, and the LFA supercar.

The following is a technical overview of the RC F — the standard RC has been covered in a separate article, which I would certainly recommend reading first.

Continue reading this article…

2015 Lexus RC 350 & RC 350 F SPORT Preview


Lexus RC Preview

Last week, Lexus invited me to the Monticello Motor Club, where I was able to test drive the all-new RC coupe in all its various forms. The following is a technical overview of the RC 350 & RC 350 F SPORT -— my personal impressions will posted early next week.

There have been exactly two Lexus non-convertible coupes in the twenty-five years since the brand’s introduction.

First was the Calty-designed SC, which debuted in 1991 and lasted nearly ten years before being replaced by the convertible second-generation SC 430 in 2001.

Highly praised by the media, the SC featured an influential exterior design with almost no straight lines and remains a core Lexus enthusiast model nearly 25 years after its release.

The second coupe by Lexus needs almost no introduction at all — the limited edition 552-horsepower LFA supercar debuted at the Tokyo Motor Show at the end of 2009, and is now arguably the most famous Lexus of all time.

With this in mind, the all-new RC coupe arrives this fall as the third Lexus coupe in history. There are three variants — the standard RC, the RC F SPORT, and the 467 horsepower RC F.

The following is a technical overview of the first two models, the RC 350 & RC 350 F SPORT — both available in RWD & AWD configurations. To avoid information overload, information on the RC F has been posted separately.

Continue reading this article…

Next-Generation Lexus IS F & New GS F Confirmed for Production by Motor Trend?


Lexus IS F Next-Generation

Tucked away in a sidebar column of this month’s Motor Trend is a rather stunning claim — it appears the magazine has confirmed with Lexus that a next-generation IS F will be built, and will be joined by the all-new GS F:

Lexus IS F & GS F Confirmed by Lexus

Rumors of both models have been circulating for some time — GS F prototypes in particular have been spotted all over the place — so the idea of a IS F & GS F aren’t exactly surprising.

However, the fact that Motor Trend has confirmed that both will be built is something else entirely. And how is this only a two-line story buried in the print edition?

(In my mind, the GS F will be a production model sooner than later, but I’m only cautiously optimistic about a next-generation IS F. Is there enough room in the Lexus lineup for two high-performance sedans alongside the RC F?)

Lexus August 2014 Sales Report


Lexus Logo

USA

Lexus USA has reported 32,809 total sales for August 2014, a 14.2% improvement over last year — here’s the model-by-model breakdown:

MONTH Year to Date (*DSR)
2014 2013 % CHG* 2014 2013 % CHG*
CT 2,191 1,784 27.4 12,507 10,642 18.1
HS 0 0 N/A 0 5 ‐100.0
IS 5,312 4,432 24.3 33,427 18,859 78.1
ES 7,692 7,628 4.6 47,188 47,210 0.4
GS 2,537 2,234 17.8 14,660 13,024 13.1
LS 758 900 -12.7 5,336 6,808 -21.2
LFA 3 0 N/A 15 17 -11.3
Total Cars 18,493 16,978 13.0 113,133 96,565 17.7
RX 11,841 11,423 7.5 68,763 65,678 5.2
GX 2,198 1,056 115.9 14,429 6,352 128.3
LX 277 335 -14.3 2,506 2,643 -4.7
Total Trucks 14,316 12,814 15.9 85,698 74,673 15.3
Total Sales 32,809 29,792 14.2 198,831 171,238 16.7

Please note, all percentages are calculated by the Daily Sales Rate (DSR), which takes into account the number of days in the month that dealerships could sell cars. August 2014 had 27 selling days, August 2013 had 28 selling days.

For the second month in a row, Lexus is the best selling luxury brand in the USA, topping second place BMW by an amazing 5,595 units.

Going through the full lineup, the only weaknesses are the 8-year-old LS with a minor drop of 12.7%, and the seven-year-old LX with a decrease of 14.3%. With the exception of these two models, everything else is moving at full-force — even the historically low-volume GS & CT broke 2,000 sales each.

With two strong months and building momentum with the upcoming NX & RC models, could Lexus actually take back the top spot in the yearly sales totals?

Currently, BMW leads with 211,005 sales over the first eight months of the year, with Mercedes close behind at 205,894.

With 198,831 sales in 2014, Lexus would have to make up at least 12,174 units on BMW — a tough challenge under any circumstances. Still, replicate August’s success in September & October, and that year-end race is going to be pretty interesting to watch.


Canada

Lexus Canada dipped slightly with a 2.3% decrease in sales compared to 2013. The RX sold 633 units over August, and the ES continues to lead sedan sales with 227 units sold.

View the full Lexus Canada model breakdown (PDF)

Lexus Russia to Offer Special Edition LX 570 for Brand’s 25th Anniversary


Lexus LX 25th Anniversary Russia

Lexus Russia is offering a 25th Anniversary Edition LX 570 with an exterior style treatment much like the USA’s CRAFTED Line .

Blacked out are the front grille, front bumper, fog lamps, side mirrors, door handles, roof rails, and rear diffuser — the special edition is also equipped with 20-inch black wheels, and features tinted headlights and taillights.

The LX 570 25th Anniversary Edition will be available in Ultra White or Obsidian. Pricing starts at 4.739 million rubles.

[Source: Lexus Russia via Lexusia]