Highlight: A stylish LC 500 convertible is headed to dealerships this summer as a 2021 model.
Test Vehicle’s MSRP: $106,440 (Base Model: $93,975)
Seating Capacity: 2 (2 extremely small kids in the rear)
Standard Safety Features: ABS; airbags; a back up camera; heated dimming exterior mirrors; a tire pressure monitoring system; a pre-collision system with pedestrian protection; an all speed radar activated cruise control system; automatic high beam headlights; a blind spot monitor with rear cross traffic alert; a lane keep assist system; a lane departure alert system with steering assist; a traction control system; a vehicle stability system; an automatic locking retractor; a first aid kit; and an emergency locking rectractor
Standard Equipment: 20-inch aluminum wheels; a rear wheel drive configuration; a 10-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifter; a push button ignition system; an adaptive variable suspension system; a driver select mode (sport and sport plus); an active sport exhaust system; aluminum pedals; electric power steering; flush outside door handles with a smart key access; LFA-inspired instrumentation; an analog clock; a 10-inch infotainment screen; a navigation system; flush-type door handles; direct spay windshield wipers; power folding auto dimming exterior mirrors; power front seats with memory controls for driver side only; memory operated electrochromic outside rearview mirrors; flush-type door handles with illumination when opened; aluminum scuff plates; a power tilt/telescopic steering wheel; leather front seats; pseudo-leather rear seats; an 8-inch infotainment screen; a dual zone climate control system; a deodorizing and dust/pollen removing interior air filter; Lexus Enform Wi-Fi; and a glass roof with sunshade
Options On Test Vehicle: heated steering wheel; 21-inch wheels; a heads up display system; a limited slipped differential; Mark Levinson 13-speaker audio system with surround system; an intuitive park assist system; premium paint; Alcantara sport seat; carbon fiber roof; active rear steering; a variable gear-ratio steering; a speed activated rear wing; Alcantara headliner; carbon fiber door; and scuff plates
Other Trim Level:
a hybrid model
Standard Audio On Test Vehicle: a 12-speaker AM/FM/CD/HD satellite radio
Bluetooth Connectivity: Yes
USB Connectivity: Yes
Android/AppleCarPlay: not compatible with Android
Amazon Alexa: Standard
Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty: 4 years or 50,000 miles
Powertrain Warranty: 6 years or 70,000 miles
Standard Engine/Horsepower: 5.0-liter, 8-cylinder/471-hp
Recommended Fuel: Premium
Standard Fuel Mileage: 16-city/26-hwy
What’s New: After arriving on the scene two years ago, the big news for the LC500 is the arrival of a stunning looking convertible this summer. As far as the coupe, a blinds spot monitor coupe is standard for the 2020 model year. And a new special edition Inspiration Series LC 500 is available. Lexus plans on producing only 100 of the unique vehicles.
Why: The rear wheel drive Lexus is available as a gasoline or a hybrid coupe. A new convertible will be joining the portfolio later this summer. The convertible will only be available in a gasoline powertrain. We can only imagine how the fun factor will be heighten when the drop top arrives. Even with the hard top, This work of art on wheels is not only eye catching, but offers the driving dynamics and an engine that literally fuels this dream machine. Yes, in the LC 500 beauty goes skin deep in this highly photogenic vehicle.
Prior to the arrival of the LC 500, Lexus was known for building luxurious and somewhat uneventful vehicles, in terms of performance and driving engagement. However, with the arrival of this dream, the brand has been able to tell a different story. The LC 500, just like the sporty looking RC, is designed for the brand’s signature wide-mouth grille. In fact, the gorgeous coupe was birthed in Toyota’s California design studio.
With the LC 500, there is so much attention to detail in this rear wheel drive sports luxury car. its obvious that fousing on details were priority for both the design and engineering team. From the detached exterior mirrors to the flush door handles to the unmistakable roaring engine sound that oozes from underneath the elongated hood, this is a Lexus like none other. The brand's halo vehicle can be describe with three synonyms: elegant, class and sex appeal.
It is so obvious that the driver experience was top of mind, when the LC 500 was conceived. The interior designers created a rotary dial that easily adjusts the drive mode select system. Within seconds, the LC allows the vehicle to turn up the volume, in terms of its engine noise, as well as fine tunes the suspension system, by going from sport to sport plus.
Oh, yes, and we can’t forget about the jet-inspired interior, too. From the driver-oriented instrument gauges to the instrument panel which meshes between conservativism and modernism. The interior designers mixes in an analog clock, a high-tech remote touch pad, a colorized digital instrument panel and the optional suede and leather, which is carefully placed throughout the instrument panel and the side doors.
Like the RC F, this luxury sports coupe is designed for both the track and cruising around town. The LC 500 effortlessly glides above the speed limit in a flash. Thank God for the optional heads up display unit, which advises the driver of his speed, as well as the posted speed limits in the driving area. In our opinion, Lexus should consider making the heads up display system a standard feature on all LCs just as they did with the blind spot monitor for the 2020 model year.
Underneath the hood, the LC zooms from 0 to 60 mph in under 5 seconds. To be more exact, it is 4.4 seconds. Just like any sports car, the LC relish curves, too, especially the optional 21-inch wheels that outfitted our vehicle. And according to Lexus’ records, the top speed on their flagship coupe is 168 mph. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately), depending upon one’s view, we did not have the opportunity to personally confirm those numbers, while the vehicle was in our possession.
Furthermore, the multi-link suspension in the LC 500 offers the perfect balance, as it relates to handling and driving. In the LC 500, the suspension system along with the supportive front seats literally places this vehicle in a category by itself. Also just in case the driver decides to showcase the vehicle’s power, a built-in center grab handle is readily available for the passenger. We also must note, the LC 500 is easy to enter and exit.
Moreover, the optional crystal clear 19-speaker audio system in our LC allows one to be in one with the vehicle as they experience every bit of what the street has to offer, as well when the vehicle is outfitted with the higher end 13-speaker Mark Levinson system. We also welcomed the CD player in our vehicle.
But: Lexus should consider adding dials and knobs to the infotainment system. The remote touch pad designed to operate the ventilation and audio system seemed to be overly sensitive. And, why does this vehicle lack a wireless charger for our smartphones. If Toyota’s best-selling vehicle, the RAV4, offers the feature, shouldn’t Lexus flagship coupe offer the feature?
We’ll refrain from commenting on the rear seat. But, let’s be honest. Who wants to haul around four people?
And, why is this stunning work of art not available with a manual transmission? While non manual users welcome the steering shift paddles, it is not the same for true driving enthusiasts. The vehicle also lacks an all-wheel drive configuration like its BMW competitor, the M850 xDrive.
Lastly, the heads up display unit should be standard as opposed to optional. Who has time to glance down at the electronic gauge, while constantly gauging the windshield and rearview mirror?
Verdict: The head-turning LC 500 is the brand’s full-fledged luxury performance coupe. Despite the lack of an all-wheel drive configuration, in our opinion, its worth every penny! We can’t wait until the 2021 convertible arrives. We’re expecting it to be heaven on wheels. BMW offers their 8-series as both a coupe and a convertible.
Competition: BMW 840i Coupe