We haven’t been shy about the vehicles we admire here on Topspeed. The Lexus NX midsize SUV falls into that list. The arrival of the NX has given Lexus a model to compete against the likes of the BMW X3 and the Audi Q5. But if the company really wants to make a statement, a smaller version of the NX should be on the horizon, right?
Lexus Europe Vice President Alain Uyttenhoven spoke with Autocar about the possibility of a smaller Lexus SUV. He wasn’t totally open but he also didn’t shoot it down, leaving us hanging with nail-biting phrases like “not impossible” and “makes sense”.
The man clearly knows how to evade leading questions, even if it comes at our unfortunate expense. But if you read between the lines, there is reason to be optimistic. For one, Uyttenhoven didn’t completely deny the possibility of a smaller, NX-based SUV. We’re going to take that as a sign that Lexus could be considering such a model in the future. For now, that’s a "win" in our book
Lexus does have a real gem in the NX SUV, and If it can use that as a basis for a smaller version, there will be no shortage of competitors sweating out the model’s arrival. Models like the BMW X1, the Audi Q3, and the Mercedes-Benz GLA should all be worried if Lexus does release a competing model.
The ball, it seems, is in Lexus’ court. What it does with it could change the landscape of the luxury, compact SUV segment.
Note: Lexus NX pictured here.
Click past the jump to read more about Lexus NX.
One of the hottest SUV concepts to appear this year — the Lexus LF-NX — will not remain just a concept much longer, according to reports. Cue all the rejoicing from fans of this absolutely wicked crossover!
The news comes by way of Auto Express, who spoke with Lexus’ European director Paul Van der Burgh about the future of the concept crossover. According to Van der Burgh, customer demand spurred the decision for the automaker to green light a production model of the LF-NX. Even better, the production version of the concept will receive many of the striking exterior details of the concept, a development that could turn the LF-NX into one of the sickest looking crossovers/SUVs this side of the upcoming Lamborghini Urus.
No word yet on what kind of powertrain the production LF-NX is going to carry. The concept that appeared last September at the Frankfurt Motor Show carried a 2.5-liter, Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder engine working with an electric motor while the turbo model that was shown at the Tokyo Motor Show just last month featured a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder turbocharged gasoline engine with D-4S and VVT-i combustion technologies.
The production LF-NX is expected to go on sale sometime in the summer of 2014, making it one of the most eagerly anticipated new crossovers of the next year. Lexus will show the LF-NX’s production variant at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show.
Click past the jump to read more about the Lexus LF-NX Concept
Rumors of a high-performance sports coupe from Lexus could heat up after it was reported that the Japanese automaker has filed a trademark for the name "RC F" in the U.S. and Europe.
The "RC 350" name was actually trademarked back in November with the Australian Patent Office, setting off speculation that this new RC model could be car that’ll be based on the LF-CC Concept. Now that Lexus has followed that up with the trademark of "RC F," you can clearly see a pattern slowly developing akin to what the company already has with the IS and IS F models.
No confirmation has been made, but in the interest of full disclosure, Lexus’ "RC F" was filed under the United States Patent & Trademark Office #85770072 and the European Union #011314226.
We’ll be sure to update you on any new updates regarding this story. At the very least, it’s getting us really excited to see what Lexus has in store for all of us.
Now that production of the Lexus LF-A has come to an end, the Japanese automaker is left without a sports car in its lineup. While it’s a hard to replace a “halo car” like the LF-A, Autocar is reporting that the LF-CC Concept, the same one that made its debut at the Paris Auto Show last September, could take the reins from the LF-A as the company’s next sports car.
According to the report, steps are already underway to begin development of a production LF-CC. This stems from a Lexus source saying that the objective this time around isn’t to showcase a limited-edition supercar the way they did with the LF-A, but to build a car that was “exciting and emotional,” and one that reflects Lexus’ intended future image as a “sporting” brand.
The new sports car will wear both coupe and convertible guise, and will carry styling cues from the concept LF-CC. A rear-drive platform is also likely to be used, similar to the setups Lexus used on the new IS and GS models. But most importantly, the production LF-CC is poised to carry a hybrid powertrain.
We have no illusions that the production LF-CC will eventually supplant the LF-A as Lexus’ fabled supercar, but we do understand the latter’s impact in giving Lexus some sports car chops, something it hasn’t had in a long time.
Here’s to hoping that the production LF-CC can carry that tradition when it makes its reported debut by 2015.
The Lexus LFA is unquestionably one of the best-sounding exotic sports cars currently on the market. Its 552 horsepower, 4.8-liter V10 engine delivers an incredible howl unmatched by any of its competitors and the following video helps to demonstrate just how incredible the LFA sounds. Oh yeah, and it also appears to be quite tail-happy too.
Captured at an exclusive Lexus Spindle Night in Odaiba, Tokyo, Japan, three LFAs, including the uber-exclusive LFA Nurburgring Edition were brought together into an outdoor arena to perform what only can be described as a lovely Japanese ballet.
After all, drifting is arguably the largest and most internationally-recognized sport to have ever come out of the Land of the Samurai, and this video helps to demonstrate just how happy the Japanese are to test the true performance capabilities of every car out there.
Check out the video above and keep the following performance stats in mind. As mentioned, the LFA’s 4.8-liter V10 engine pumps out a Lamborghini Gallardo-equalling 552hp at an incredible 8,800 rpm at 354 lb-ft of torque at 6,800 rpm. Most impressively however, is the fact that 90 percent of that torque is available between 3,700 rpm and the car’s 9,000 rpm redline!
Lexus may have pulled one over on us by revealing an LF-A contest instead of a special edition LF-A supercar, but at least we’re getting some good news to put us in better spirits. A Lexus insider has revealed that the company plans to revive its sedan line-up, adding a coupe based on the wild LF-LC concept, possibly a coupe derived from the GS, and a new, smaller five-passenger crossover. The biggest news, however, is the launch of a roadster LF-A for mid-2014.
Next to the changes we’ve seen so far in the GS, ES, and LS, Lexus will also be working on a re-engineered IS for the spring of 2013. It will be built on a shortened version of the GS platform and will feature the same 2.5-liter and 3.5-liter engines, as well as a new exterior design that will differentiate it from the IS. Next, there will be a GS Coupe - placed between the IS-C and LF-LC - priced at about $60K.
As for a production version of the LF-LC concept, it has been confirmed for late 2014 as a competitor for the Aston Martin Vantage and the Porsche 911 Turbo. Lexus’ SUV line-up will see redesigns for the RX and LX in 2014 and 2015 respectively, while a smaller CX will compete against the Audi Q3 and BMW X1 and will arrive in the fall of 2013.
Earlier this week, we brought forward reports that Aston Martin is considering downsizing its lineup of engines, which almost exclusively include V-8s and V-12s. This consideration is an obvious attempt to squeeze a few more mpg out of its lineup without depleting horsepower, which will allow the boutique automaker to achieve the fuel economy numbers required by the ongoing CAFE standards.
According to De Telegraf, Aston Martin may be considering Toyota as a partner in this downsizing attempt. In particular, Aston is eyeballing the V-10 engine used in the Lexus LF-A and the 8-pot used in several other Lexus models.
If you are wondering how Aston plans to milk these engines out of Toyota, keep in mind that Aston and Toyota already have a working agreement for Aston Martin to use the Toyota iQ to create its own Cygnet. So, for Aston Martin executives to get into conversation with Toyota brass about this possibility wouldn’t take too much.
The only issue that Toyota may have is the fact that this sharing of engines may result in added competition for the LFA and other Lexus models. Then again, with Aston Martin being such an exclusive brand without a long production list, Toyota may not see this as a threat, but rather a way to get its name on the tip of premium sports car buyers’ tongues. This could result in the ultimate word-of-mouth advertising for Lexus’ sports cars, which will soon include a car that may rival Aston Martins, the LF-LC.
We’ll keep you up to date on this developing situation and let you know as soon as more details become available.
When Lexus first announced that it planned on selling 20 LFA units monthly (500 total) with each one costing at minimum $375,000, we thought the Japanese brand had lost its mind. However, if reports are to be believed, just 10 units of the LFA are waiting for to be picked up at dealerships across Lexus’ worldwide network of dealerships.
Lexus has yet to confirm or deny these figures, nor has it mentioned whether all 50 LFA Nurburgring Editions have sold. Nevertheless, we very impressed by Lexus’ sales figures of the LFA as it tells us two clear things about the company and the brand.
First of all, it proves just how successful the marketing and sales team at Lexus has been in order to ship out almost all of the LFAs ever produced. It also indicates that the LFA is a true performance car which owners believe is worth the $375,000 - even if on paper, it certainly doesn’t appear to be twice as good as many of its competitors.
As a refresher, the LFA features an incredibly-advanced 4.8-liter V10 engine pumping out 560 HP at a screaming 9,000rpm while an impressive torque figure of 354lb-ft wraps up the performance capabilities of the engine. As a result, the LFA can launch to 60 mph in just 3.7 seconds and continue onto a top speed of 202 mph. However, if reports are to be believed, the upcoming LFA II could be twice as fast and twice as expensive.
The idea of supply and demand has always been a key ingredient in any successful business, and automakers know that just as much as any leading entrepreneur currently raking in millions of dollars. Take Lexus, for example. Their LF-A took some heat for being much more expensive than leading supercars in the market, but the company didn’t have any problems finding customers to hand over the $375,000 for it, instead of dishing out the $225,000 for the Ferrari 458 Italia. Bottomline, this was Japan’s first supercar ever and only 500 units were going to be built, meaning people will pay for exclusivity, no matter the cost.
Now it seems as though Lexus is taking the demand for the Lexus LF-A to a whole new level by working on a second generation for the LF-A with double the features and only one fifth of the units. Needless to say, the price for this bad boy just jumped to double the original. A source close to the company has passed information along to AutoGuide stating that the upcoming LF-A II will be vastly more impressive in terms of performance, but will also be vastly more expensive. This source confirmed that the new supercar will deliver a significantly higher performance level, but the price will be somewhere in the range of $800,000 to $1 million. Oh and the number of units dwindled down to 100 in case math isn’t your strong suit.
This is one of those cases where we think some customers may just settle for the first generation.
More often than not, a lot of people get caught up in the snazziness of concept cars, especially when automakers unveil them to a lot of pomp and circumstance. But as is the case with a lot of these concepts, people begin to forget about them as soon as the show ends and the lights are turned off.
Apparently though, that’s not the case for the Lexus LF-LC Concept.
We first saw the concept a few months ago at the 2012 NAIAS, where it proceeded to garner tremendous praise and support, even bagging the prestigious EyesOn award given to the best car in Detroit. The LF-LC made such an impression to the public that there’s actually a clamoring for Lexus to build a production model of the car.
“This is just a concept at this point," said Yoshi Inaba, president and COO of Toyota Motor North America. "But judging from the fantastic reception it received at the recent Detroit auto show, people want us to build it".
Now, this isn’t the first time that people have voiced their opinion on building a production model of a concept car. But this case is unique in the sense that Lexus seems to be paying attention to all the positive feedback and if the reactions remain strong - or even get stronger - there’s a fair chance that the Japanese automaker may concede to the growing demand and be convinced to build it in the future.
Apart from being one of the most awesome supercars on the planet, the Lexus LF-A taught us something important about Lexus. Toyota’s luxury division is trying to shed away its conservative persona in favor of being seen as a harbinger of high-performance cars.
Now it appears they’re targeting more than just the Ferraris and Lamborghinis of the world. They’ve also got an eye towards performance vehicles like the BMW M5, which only adds to Lexus’ growing reputation as a giant slayer.
According to Autocar, the Japanese automaker is planning on building a high-performance version of the GS-F, one that will carry a tuned version of the LF-A’s 4.8-liter V10 engine and will have at least 450 horsepower on tap. Those figures still fall short of the M5’s 550-horsepower output, but it’s still what people will consider as high-performance. Besides, you can expect Lexus to make up for the relative lack of output by packing all sorts of technology in the car.
Lexus’ intention of catering more to the world of high-performance cars was busted open with the release of the LF-A supercar. After seeing what they’re truly capable of, we’re not going to put anything past these guys.
If they want to go after cars like the BMW M5, then by all means, more power to them.
2013 Lexus GS 350 F-Sport pictured above
This year has been a little lackluster for Lexus in terms of beating our their competition, but the luxury end of Toyota is getting back on track for what it says will be a couple of exciting years. With all its latest innovations, Lexus is planning a few big things to battle it out against the likes of BMW and Mercedes. This includes a full refresh of its luxury sedans, as well as a kick-the-competition-in-the-ass LF-A Roadster.
The passenger-car lineup will be made over by the spring of 2013, as the GS, ES, IS, and LS sedans will all be either redesigned or re-engineered. However, the biggest gun in the arsenal will be the LF-A supercar. The 500 units for the current LF-A coupe will be finished by 2013, then a roadster version will be unveiled in 2014. This model was actually previewed by the LF-A Roadster concept unveiled in 2008, but the production version will feature the company’s latest design language. Lexus hasn’t said anything about the more powerful version of their LF-A supercar rumored a while ago, but we hope that will be their secret weapon somewhere down the line.
In addition to the sedan redo and the drop top LF-A, Lexus also has plans for the future GS-F performance edition and the LS. The company has said that the high-performance version will not feature a conventional V8 engine, but a hybrid drivetrain. The LS will also be redesigned in 2013 - it will get weight-saving technology using premium materials and a new, more economical engine.