According to Edmund’s Inside Line, the next generation Lexus SC has been cancelled:
Toyota had been developing a successor to the SC, based on the same rear-wheel-drive platform as the LF-A. Originally slated for production in early 2009, the next-generation SC was pushed back to mid-2011 and now has been canceled, according to Toyota insiders.
Of course, this is speculative and unconfirmed. Even should the rumor turn out correct, it can only be one half of the story, because there’s no way Lexus pulls out of the coupe/convertible market entirely. More likely, this is a temporary hiatus, which also happened in 2001 between the phasing out of the first-gen SC and the SC 430.
My current theory is this: The SC will be be shelved during the 2009 model year, which will be offset by the introduction of the IS coupe/convertible. Then, when 2010 hits, the LF-A will be released as the SC, and will be offered in a sub-$100,000 variation. This seems to be hinted at by Edmunds, and looks to me to be the most likely scenario.
More than anything, I can’t picture Lexus letting the SC name die.