Lexus, the once dominant Japanese luxury offshoot of Toyota, has spent the past few years spinning its tires in a muddle of oatmeal blandness. But the marque—which in its heyday garnered more hip-hop name-drops than many European rivals—is again gaining traction, thanks largely to the all-new RC F, a rear-wheel-drive super coupe that rockets away from the mire of SUVs and overpriced hybrids that had us losing hope that Lexus could ever again move us.
Borrowing cues from the LFA supercar, the new Lexus street fighter is outfitted in aggressive styling that’s almost boy-racer in nature. The vehicle’s graceful liquid curves don’t translate well in two dimensions, yet every element of its functional form—from massive grille to towering front-fender vents—flows together in exemplary fashion. Inside, high-backed racing bucket seats add track flair while coddling passengers with buttery-rich leather. The optional navigation package adds a full-color LCD screen and touch pad complete with a suite of apps including Pandora and Yelp.
Around town, we found the naturally aspirated five-liter V8 to be a smooth spirit, and bypassing the Sport mode for Sport+ uncovered a pleasantly short-fused temper. Its 467 horses are angry and, if not for the car’s almost 4,000-pound curb weight, may be rather untamable. Flaws aside, the new RC platform is exactly what Lexus needed to get us all rapping again.
2015 Lexus RC F
Engine: Five-liter V8 | Horsepower: 467
Torque: 389 ft.-lb. | Zero to 60: 4.4 seconds
MPG: 16 city, 25 hwy. | Price: $63,325 base
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