SUPERCAR SPAWNED GT COUPE FROM LEXUS
IS THIS ONE OF THE BEST LOOKING CARS ON THE ROAD?
2017 LEXUS LC500h.
This car has to rate as one of the most stunning lookers on the road right now. Lexus has nailed it in the LC500h, the V6 hybrid version of its new GT-style, rear wheel drive coupe. There’s a V8 too… for the same price.
A spin off from Lexus’ concept coupe that recently appeared at motor shows, the LC500h rivals, even surpasses the likes of anything from Maserati, Aston Martin and mainstream German GT coupe players. Staff from the Lexus LF-A supercar program were seconded into LC500 development and it shows.
FOR TECH HEADS AND V8 TRAGICS
Lexus covered off a model for tech heads in the hybrid and V8 buyers with its two model range but you’ll want to spend the extra $15,000 on the Dynamic Handling Package that brings a carbon roof, four wheel steer, active rear spoiler, sports seats and a limited slip diff on the hybrid. The V8 gets one as standard.
LC500h ushers in a swag of new technology from Lexus including a lithium ion battery, a new transmission that’s essentially a CVT with a four speed torque converter attached, a new form of multi-stage hybrid powertrain with multiple drive modes and active suspension for improved ride and handling.
Power from the LC500h comes from a 3.5-litre petrol V6 engine coupled with an electric motor generator. Total output is anyone’s guess as the petrol engine alone is good for 264kW/348Nm while the electric motor is good for 132kW/300Nm. But you don’t just add them together…
Adequate is an appropriate description especially when you consider the 351kW/540Nm V8 clocks a 0-100 in 4.7 seconds with the hybrid only 0.3 slower.
But the hybrid uses only 6.7-litres/100km, nearly half the fuel.
Built on a new platform, the LC500h weighs in at a portly 2020kg but performance and handling aren’t dulled.
It has razor sharp responses, and sounds a bit like a Porsche 911 on full song thanks to a sound generator under the bonnet.
Luxury kit is generous with LED headlights, hidden door handles, heads up display, leather/suede upholstery, 10.3-inch touch screen controller, the latest Mark Levinson audio and media system, heated/ventilated seats and those striking 21-inch forged alloy wheels.
Safety equipment includes all the current camera based driver assist technology like adaptive cruise control and lane keeping assist.
Driving the LC500h is a treat as it goes like it looks. No slouch by anyone’s measure it can be treated like a sports coupe or a luxury cruiser with everything in between covered off. Just don’t get in the back seat if you can help it…
➔ Stunning looks
➔ Super economical (EU6)
➔ Impressive performance
➔ Sounds unreal (it is)
➔ Luxury aplenty, love the door handles
➔ Safe as houses with the latest kit
➔ Entertaining drive
➔ Surprisingly good ride on 21-inch wheels
➔ Interior a pleasure to be in
NOT SO MUCH
➔ Weighs heaps
➔ Barely adequate rear seat room
➔ Dynamic Handling Package should be standard
➔ Low front problematic on drives.
ENGINE: 3.5-litre V6 petrol with electric motor generator 264kW/348Nm, 132kW/300Nm
TRANSMISSION: 10 speed CVT with 4-speed torque converter
0-100KMH: 5.0 seconds
ALTERNATIVES: Maserati GT $295,000, BMW 650i $236,200, Aston Martin Vantage GT $219,895