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2015 Lexus RC

The Lexus RC has been one of the most hotly anticipated reveals by the Japanese automaker in recent years, and we finally got to see it at the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show . Let us tell you, it certainly did not disappoint.

At the Tokyo show, Lexus actually revealed both the gasoline and hybrid versions of the RC, and as no surprise, it adopted a design language similar to what we have seen with the recently unveiled IS Sedan , but taken to a sportier level and sans the two rear doors.

The new RC is defined by aggressively contoured lines, the trademark Lexus spindle grille, the usual triangular headlamps and a cockpit specially designed for optimal driver and passenger enjoyment.

Since Lexus already trademarked the "RC F" name, we expect Lexus to reveal the RC F a few months after the standard version, most likely at the 2014 Detroit Auto Show .

Click past the jump to read more about the Lexus RC.

Exterior

Lexus RC
Lexus RC
Lexus RC

The new RC coupe features the same design language we have seen in all the recently launched Lexus sedans, but with deeply contoured lines, and the widest and lowest application of the traditional spindle grille to date. The RC’s triangular headlamps draw inspiration from the LF-LC concept car and display an "L" shape when the low beams are on.

Far and away our favorite view of the RC Coupe is from the backside. Those stunning taillights make us drool, the air outlet on either side of the rear fascia give the RC some much needed aggressiveness, and the dual exhaust tips are simply ot of this world!

When compared to the IS Sedan, the RCCoupe is 1.2 inches wider, 1.4 inches lower and rides on a 2.8-inch-shorter wheelbase. This low and wide look, combined with the two-door setup makes the RC look like it really means business.

The new sports coupe sits on large, aluminum wheels, offered in either a 10-spoke, 19-inch style or a five-spoke, 18-inch look. Both are offered with black and platinum center caps for an extra-classy look.

Lexus also rolled out a specially developed painting process for the RC, which uses multiple layers of clear and deeper-colored paints to give it a deeper look.

From the initial details that Lexus released, there appears to be no outward differences between the RC 350 and the RC 300h, with exception to the badges. We’re sure that there are a few other differences that we will learn at a later date.

Taillight Detail

Lexus RC

Exterior Specifications

RC 350 RC 300h
Length (in.)184.8184.8
Height(in.)54.954.9
Width (in.)72.472.4
Wheelbase(in.)107.5107.5

Interior

Lexus RC

For the interior, Lexus specially developed a lighting package that reflects upward, rather than downward, giving the interior a sleek and sporty look. There is also a new interior tone called "Clove," which Lexus also specially designed for the new RC and combined with genuine shimamoku wood highlights to add a little luxury to the mix.

Lexus divided the RC’s cockpit in two sections: operational zone and display zone. The upper zone houses the instrument panel and a seven-inch navigation screen, while a layered center console integrates a new Remote Touch Interface

Stark-contrasting colors help accentuate the lines in the RC’s sexy cabin. From the interior shots that Lexus provided, we can see that the center stack and console are very well set up without much clutter. There is also a nice clock right between the navi screen and the audio system.

Gear Shifter and Drive Select Interface Detail

Lexus RC

Clock and Navi Screen Detail

Lexus RC

Drivetrain, Suspension and Brakes

Lexus RC

The Lexus RC comes in two variants, and first up is the RC 350, which will come standard with a 3.5-liter, V-6 engine. This engine pumps out 314 horsepower at 6,400 rpm, and peak torque of 280 pound-feet at 4,800 rpm — that’s an eight-horsepower and three-pound-feet increase over the 3.5-liter found in the IS 350.

The RC 350’s V-6 hooks up to an eight-speed Sport Direct Shift automatic transmission that it borrowed from the IS F. This paddle-shifted gearbox helps optimize performance and economy, plus it upshifts in just 0.2 seconds when the driver puts it in Manual mode.

The hybrid variant, known as the RC 300h, uses a 2.5-liter, in-line four-cylinder that mates to a 105 kW electric motor to produce a total of 217 horsepower. That gasoline engine itself produces 176 horsepower and 163 pound-feet of torque. The power heads through a six-speed, electronically controlled continuously variable transmission.

Both versions of the RC come standard with rear-wheel drive, but all-wheel drive is an option. Additionally, both models feature double-wishbone suspension up front and a multi-link setup on the rear. Lexus also adds in a few aerodynamic aids to help enhance the RC’s handling credentials. Helping keep the RC glued to the road is a set of 255/35R19 tires up front and 275/35R19 tires out back.

Specifications

RC 350 RC 300h
Engine type2GR-FSE2AR-FSE
CylindersV-6L4
Horsepower314 hp @ 6,400 rpm176 hp @ 6,000 rpm
Torque280 lb.-ft. @ 4,800 rpm163 lb.-ft. @ 4,800 rpm
Total System Output-217 hp
Transmission8ATE-CVT
Driven wheelsRear-wheel driveRear-wheel drive
SuspensionFront:Double Wishbone / Rear:MultilinkFront:Double Wishbone / Rear:Multilink
Tire255/35R19 (front) / 275/35R19 (rear)255/35R19 (front) / 275/35R19 (rear)

Prices

Lexus RC

Prices for the new Lexus RC Coupe will be announced in early 2014, but we expect it to be priced in the low $40k area.

Competition

2014 BMW 4 Series Coupe

BMW 4 Series Coupe

BMW unveiled the 4 Series Coupe as a replacement for the old 3 Series Coupe, and we like what we see so far. It looks very sporty, handles great and it is quite powerful across the board.

The 4 Series Coupe comes in two versions: 428i and 435i. The base 428i comes with a 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder engine that delivers a total of 240 horsepower. The range-topping 435i gets a 3.0-liter, in-line-six engine with TwinPower Turbo that produces 300 horsepower.

Prices start from $41,425.

2014 Audi A5 Coupe

Audi A5 Coupe

Up to this point, the A5 Coupe was one of the most elegant sports coupes on the market, but it looks like things are going to change once the RC hits showrooms.

On the U.S. market, the A5 is offered in three different trim levels: Premium, Premium Plus and Prestige. All of them are offered with a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that delivers a total of 211 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque.

Prices for the A5 start from $37,850.

Conclusion

Lexus RC

The RC Coupe took a while to finally hit the market, but we finally got a good look at it, and we are very impressed. The body lines are stunning, the V-6 engine has plenty of pop and the hybrid model is bound to deliver good fuel economy and respectable performance. More details will roll out as we approace the RC Coupe’s release date, so stay tuned for more information.

LOVE IT
  • Awesome appearance
  • An interior that is design for sport and comfort
  • A nice uptick in output from the 3.5-liter V-6
LEAVE IT
  • Hybrid model is a little underpowered

Press Release

The all-new Lexus RC coupe will make its world debut at the Tokyo Motor Show on Nov. 20,2013. The press conference will be held at 8:45 a.m. and a live webcast stream of the event will be available at http://www.lexus-int.com.

Lexus RC

Two RC models will be displayed at the Tokyo Motor Show – RC 350 with a 3.5-liter V6 engine, and the RC 300h hybrid with a 2.5-liter engine. Today Lexus released photos of the all-new RC in advance of the world premiere. The RC line brings to life the luxury marque’s focus on emotional appeal through a dynamic and alluring two-door coupe. It has been developed to raise the brand’s profile with a broader audience and new-to-Lexus customers. It injects emotional appeal into the Lexus DNA that is synonymous with build quality, refinement and reliability.

Design Exterior

Lexus designers have infused the RC design with deeply contoured lines never before seen in the Lexus line-up. They have integrated the widest and lowest application yet seen of the Lexus spindle grille.

Lexus RC

Triangular headlamps evoke the sporty characteristics of the LF-LC styling while concept vehicle inspiration is evident in the unique three-lamp LED design. At low beam, the lamps adopt an L-shaped pattern as an expression of the Lexus identity. The sharp, thin design of the rear combination lamps adopts the symbolic Lexus L-shaped motif.

RC’s aluminum wheels continue the concept-to-production design philosophy with two available combinations – a deeply sculpted 10-spoke 19-inch wheel or a muscular five-spoke 18-inch version, each precision-machined and finished with elegant black and platinum center caps.

A new Lexus painting process that uses multiple layers of clear and deeper-colored coating brings the RC coupe to life with a brighter and more contrasting shade, especially on the racy red exterior.

Design Interior

Highly acclaimed sport concept vehicles have greatly influenced the interior of the RC coupe, with maximum use of contrasting colors, materials and lighting. A purpose-built Lexus-first lighting package provides a great sense of occasion, with illumination that reflects upwards, rather than downwards, to envelop the interior. High contrast interior trim, including a new tone called Clove, emphasize design lines and accentuate the elegant cabin. Genuine shimamoku wood highlights – the result of an intense, layered wood production technique refined by Lexus – are used to emphasize the surrounding trim.

Lexus RC

The driver’s cockpit is divided into operational and display zones. The upper zone houses the instrument panel and a seven-inch navigation screen while a layered center console integrates a new Lexus first Remote Touch Interface.

Important for a coupe, the seats utilize an integrated foaming construction method – much like the molding of racing seats – to ensure optimum occupant comfort and support.

Press Release 2

Lexus Unveils All-New RC Coupe

  • Striking Concept-to-Reality Coupe to Launch in 2014
  • Development Focus on Body Rigidity Ensures Agile Performance
  • New Lexus Dedicated Coupe with the Most Aggressive use yet of the Iconic Spindle Grille
  • NewRemote Touch Interface Implements Intuitive Touch-Sensitive Design
  • New Generation Technologies and Advanced Manufacturing Techniques Utilized in Vehicle Development

TOKYO (Nov. 20, 2013) — Lexus unveiled its striking new production-ready RC coupe, scheduled for launch in 2014, at the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show. The RC raises Lexus’ profile with a broader audience, injecting emotional appeal into the Lexus DNA which has become well known for building quality, refinement and reliability.

“Our focus is to strengthen the brand’s emotional appeal through our products and RC is another demonstration of this focus,” said Mark Templin, Lexus International executive vice president. “The emotional attachment of a coupe is found in its purity of design and its engaging driving experience, and with RC the engineers have achieved the balance.”

“We developed RC to deliver extra response that exhilarates rather than overwhelms drivers, in keeping with the true spirit of Japanese hospitality, or omotenashi.,” noted Junichi Furuyama, RC and IS chief engineer.

RC is part of a ride and handling revolution at Lexus, which started with GS mid-size luxury sedan and continued with the new IS sport sedan. The RC is a stand-alone model, rather than a two-door derivative of a sedan. Based on the GS platform, the coupe differs in all dimensions from the GS and IS lines.

The aggressively styled coupe will be available with two powertrains:3.5-liter V6 teamed with an eight-speed sequential transmission and 2.5-liter Lexus Hybrid Drive system.

Design Exterior

The RC has been infused with deeply contoured lines, integrating the widest and lowest application yet of the Lexus spindle grille. It is unique in the Lexus range – 1.2-inches wider, 1.4-inches lower and 2.8-inches shorter in wheelbase than the new IS sedan, providing a road stance that emphasizes the attraction of a luxury two-door vehicle.

The unique headlamp design adopts the symbolic Lexus L-shaped motif front and rear. There are two choices of aluminum wheels – a deeply sculpted 10-spoke 19-inch and a muscular five-spoke 18-inch.

A new red exterior paint color is made brighter and shows more contrast thanks to a new painting process.

Design Interior

Highly acclaimed sports concept vehicles have greatly influenced the RC interior, making maximum use of contrasting colors, materials and lighting.

A purpose-built Lexus-first lighting package provides a great sense of occasion, with illumination that reflects upwards, rather than downwards, to envelop the cabin. High contrast interior colors emphasize design lines and accentuate the elegant cabin. Genuine shimamoku wood highlights – the result of an intense, layered wood production technique refined by Lexus – are used to emphasize the surrounding trim.

The driver’s cockpit is divided into operational and display zones. The upper zone houses the instrument panel and a seven-inch navigation screen while a layered center console integrates a new Lexus-first Remote Touch Interface.

The seats utilize an integrated foaming construction method, much like the molding of racing seats, to ensure optimum occupant comfort and support which is important in a sport coupe.

Driving Dynamics

The RC’s strong and purpose-built chassis is the latest evolution of Lexus’ objective to achieve a world class driving experience, epitomized by the improved performance of both the GS and IS lines.

Extra thick underbody rocker panels greatly increase the two-door’s rigidity to support driving performance. New manufacturing techniques pioneered in the LS and IS models, including the use of body adhesives, have strengthened the chassis.

Aerodynamic aids, especially on the underbody, contribute to the handling package.

RC uses double wishbone front suspension and multi-link suspension at the rear.

Powertrains

The dual injection 3.5-liter V6 gas engine produces maximum power of 314 hp at 6,400 rpm, and peak torque of 280 lb.-ft. at4,800 rpm.

An eight-speed Sport Direct Shift with paddle shift transmission adapted from the ISF performance sedan optimizes power delivery and fuel economy. In manual (M) mode full torque converter lock up from second to eighth gears allows for down changes in just 0.2 seconds.

The hybrid variant – the first Lexus hybrid coupe – uses a dual-injected 2.5-liter four cylinder engine with a 105kW electric motor driven through an electronic continuously variable transmission with six step gears in a sequential shift-matic feature.

The RC coupe will be offered in rear wheel drive and all-weather drive (AWD), however availability will vary by market.

The sound generated by the engine has been tuned to ensure it delivers a stirring exhaust note under spirited driving conditions.

Advanced Technology
The RC offers several advanced technology features including an updated Spot Monitor and newRemote Touch Interface (RTI).

RC is the first Lexus to adopt the revised Blind Spot Monitor system which detects vehicles that are approaching from behind at a higher speed and from a greater distance than is covered by the current system.

The innovative touch-sensitive Lexus Remote Touch Interface for audio and navigation systems is particularly important in a coupe in which tactile reaction is a desirable part of the driving experience.

Specifications

RC 350 RC 300h
Length (in.)184.8184.8
Height(in.)54.954.9
Width (in.)72.472.4
Wheelbase(in.)107.5107.5
Seating capacity (Persons)44
Driven wheelsRear-wheel driveRear-wheel drive
Engine type2GR-FSE2AR-FSE
CylindersV6L4
Horsepower314 hp @ 6,400 rpm176 hp @ 6,000 rpm
Torque280 lb.-ft. @ 4,800 rpm163 lb.-ft. @ 4,800 rpm
Total System Output-217 hp
Transmission8ATE-CVT
SuspensionFront:Double Wishbone / Rear:MultilinkFront:Double Wishbone / Rear:Multilink
Tire255/35 R19 (front) / 275/35 R19 (rear)255/35 R19 (front) / 275/35 R19 (rear)

*Japan specification



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