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2021 Lexus LC500 Convertible

2021 Lexus LC500 Convertible

Just when we thought it can’t get better than the LC500 Coupe, Lexus dropped the LC500 Convertible

Freshly launched at the 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show, the Lexus LC500 Convertible borrows every stunning feature from its Coupe brother and then adds some more appeal courtesy of a retractable textile roof.

The LC500 Convertible still packs the naturally-aspirated, 471-horsepower V-8, however, a hybrid version hasn’t been announced yet. Join us as we explore the new LC500 Convertible in-depth, to see what’s new for the sleek cabriolet.

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2018 Lexus LC500 - Driven

2018 Lexus LC500 - Driven

Lexus’ halo coupe is a grand touring marvel

It was in 2012 when Lexus pulled the covers off its LF-LC concept car at the Detroit Auto Show. The concept boasted curvy lines, massive rear haunches, a big Spindle Grille, those signature fishhook LED daytime running lights, and a nose almost as long as Michael Keaton’s Batmobile. Somehow Lexus managed to keep the concept’s sultry lines almost completely intact for production. The final result is this, the 2018 Lexus LC500.

I spent a week behind its wheel, doing everything from blasting down the Interstate to picking up the kiddos in the carpool line. It fetched groceries and drew crowds in nearly equal amounts. It also fostered a love/hate relationship in my view. I’ll explain below.

Continue reading for more information.

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2015 Lexus RC - First Drive

2015 Lexus RC - First Drive

The crisp, cold air caught me off guard when I stepped from the hotel into the staging area where Lexus had filed a handful of its newest creations into two lines, prepped for a drive through the lush countryside that envelopes New York’s Hudson Valley. The brisk air might not have been what this Floridian was used to in mid-September, but once behind the wheel of the 2015 Lexus RC F, things became familiar.

Though I’d not sat in Lexus’ two-door, rear-drive sports coupe a day in my life, the interior was an immediately recognizable place, harking back to my time in the 2014 IS 350 F-Sport. The controls fell in the same position, the infotainment screen showed the same Enform system, even the overall design looked like I’d accidentally sat in the wrong Lexus.

And that’s not a bad thing.

While there’s plenty of IS flavor in the new RC, there’s even more that’s unfamiliar. The beautifully stitched sports seats, the reworked gauge cluster, and the center console arrangement are all new, not to mention the 2+2 seating configuration.

Slipping the eight-speed automatic into gear, the faintly audible rumble of the RC F’s 5.0-liter V-8 mumbled at a lower tone. Our entourage of journalists was off to conquer a two-hour drive before arriving at our destination, Monticello Motor Club.

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2015 Lexus NX - First Drive

2015 Lexus NX - First Drive

Lexus has dominated the midsize luxury crossover market since its RX lineup debuted back in 1998. Its small size, fuel-efficient engines, and long list of luxurious amenities make the RX a hot seller. In 2013 alone, the RX sold over 103,000 units within the U.S. Lexus seems bent on gaining even more sales and growing its SUV lineup by offering a completely new product, the NX. Smaller than the RX and with striking features inside and out, the NX is poised to further solidify Lexus’ position as a luxury leader. The NX is all-new for 2015 and comes with two available powerplants, front- and all-wheel-drive, and room for five. Two separate models — the 200t and 300h — offer a wide range of choices and additional packages for customers looking to buy that just-right crossover.

Lexus says it only plans on selling roughly 36,000 units per year within the States, but if the RX and other crossover sales have any indication, the NX will easily surpass Lexus’ conservative estimates. The NX is also going global, selling in more than 80 markets worldwide. And while the official pricing hasn’t been released, the NX is estimated to undercut the RX’s price by some $5,000, meaning it will start in the mid-$30,000 range.

I recently spent some time behind the wheel of the new 2015 Lexus NX in the rolling hills of Nashville, Tennessee. What I discovered was a competent-handling, fun-to-drive vehicle that makes the trade-offs of owning an SUV less impactful, while still retaining all the benefits of a utilitarian crossover.

Click past the jump for the full review of the all-new 2015 Lexus NX

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2015 Lexus NX

2015 Lexus NX

After Toyota North America filled trademarks for two new models — the NX 200t and NX 300h — it was not hard to figure out that these were upcoming Lexus models. The fact that they were SUVs was made simply by the "X" in their names. It was also not very difficult to understand that one trademark — the NX 200t — will be the turbocharged gasoline version, while the other one — the NX 300h — will be a hybrid model. The NX 200t will be powered by the company’s new 2.0-liter, turbocharged AR engine set to launch in 2014, while the 300h will likely get the same hybrid powertrain as in the Lexus ES 300h: a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder Atkinson cycle hybrid engine.

The new Lexus NX will be placed under the company’s current RX and will most likely debut on the market sometime in 2015.

Updated 4/11/2014: Lexus has officially confirmed that the NX line will debut at the 2014 Beijing International Automotive Exhibition on April 20th. The lineup will include the base NX 200, the turbocharged NX 200t and the hybrid NX 300h. Details are still limited, but we detailed as much as we could, plugs a look at the concepts that previewed the NX, after the jump.

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2014 Lexus IS 350 AWD

2014 Lexus IS 350 AWD

How does the latest Lexus style look in the flesh? Pretty darn sexy, if you ask us.

Wearing almost the exact shame shade of maroon paint as the 2012 LF-CC concept, and headlights to match as well, the 2014 IS is quickly becoming one of the best-looking compact luxury models available.

The IS 350 AWD is priced from $41,700 and is the top version of the IS lineup, except of course the F Sport variants.

Lexus brought the IS onto the market in 1998 as an entry level model placed under the more powerful ES luxury sedan.

The second generation arrived in 2005 and the third one was unveiled at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show and went on sale in mid-2013 in both rear- and all-wheel-drive versions.

The IS 350 AWD comes loaded with tons of standard features, but customers interested in updating it even further have a lot of packages and options to choose from. The only problem is that these options are quite expensive and you can end up paying up to $60k for a highly equipped version.

The entire IS lineup was heavily updated for the new generation, and, just like with the GS and LS models it will feature an inverted trapezoidal upper grille, slanted lower grille and new headlights with LED technology.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Lexus IS 350 AWD.

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2014 Lexus GS 350

2014 Lexus GS 350

If every car company has one division of rock star engineers and stylists assigned to work on the most important projects, what do Lexus’s biggest brains focus on? The new sport sedan platform is the result of intensive engineering at the very highest levels in the Toyota and Lexus organization. Twinned with the IS sedan, the GS was all-new for 2013 with looks that really warm up over time.

But the GS has always somewhat failed to deliver on its V-8 engine’s initial "Something Wicked This Way Comes" advertising campaign, even more than 15 years since the GS400 made every Lexus dealer a little bit more ’hip and trendy lounge’ versus a ’hip replacement center.’

The world seems like quite a different place now. The GS competes in the most challenging and action-packed segment of the luxury sedan market, the $40,000 to $60,000 class that also includes such exceptional machines as the Mercedes-Benz E350 with a new nine-speed automatic, the always-rapid BMW 535i and the quietly stellar Audi A6.

The GS needs to be among the best if Lexus is to be successful outside its core niche of affluent and comfort-focused car shoppers who prefer not to own a German car.

Whether thinking the servicing will be too expensive, the image is not right, or myriad other reasons, Lexus wants to expand its niche to real car guys. If all goes well, the company should be able to please its existing clients and also have a shot at some respect in Europe and China, where Lexus is currently destroyed in sales by the three German luxury juggernauts.

Coming in the GS 450h Hybrid or the gasoline GS 350 or the GS 350 F Sport, the 2014 Lexus gets a new eight-speed automatic and some detail trim enhancements like something Lexus calls a ’superchrome’ finish on the wheels. The battle for luxury sedans is hotter than ever, and the new GS finally has some real advantages over its competition.

But is that enough for the 2014 Lexus GS 350?

Click past the jump to find out.

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2014 Lexus GX 460

2014 Lexus GX 460

The Lexus GX 460 is fresh for 2014 with a far deeper facelift than the LED and spindle grille applied to the Lexus LX 570 last year.

The smaller GX 460 SUV is just as tough and trail ready as its big brother, and now has a striking front grille design and huge rear fender flares like a baja race truck.

Clear LED taillights bring up the rear of the GX, which looks much more familiar in profile than it does from up front with this extreme L-finesse grille treatment. The GX is still not the sleekest SUV out there, and prides itself on its global heritage as the hugely popular Toyota Land Cruiser Prado.

As one of the few remaining off-roaders with real survival skills in harsh and barren climates, the body-on-frame GX V-8 has never been quite as popular among U.S. crossover shoppers as the firms lighter-duty haulers, like the RX. A truck-like demeanor is still evident the moment the GX starts to move, despite layers of Lexus leather and sound-proofing to make this SUV as quiet inside as an ISO tank.

A final treat on this revamped seven-passenger SUV? A price cut of about $5,000 for 2014, despite additional technology and safety equipment included as standard.

Versus the new seven-seat Range Rover Sport and Mercedes-Benz GL, the Lexus certainly still has dozens of advantages when the going gets life-threatening. But in a dwindling market for real off-roaders with $3,000 metallic paint jobs: is all the GX 460’s unstoppable off-road equipment still enough of a selling point?

Click past the just for the full review of the 2014 Lexus GX 460, with high-res images of the new exterior styling and interior features.

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2008 Lexus GS350

2008 Lexus GS350

Here at Top Speed we are about more than just stripped down high performance racers, despite the name we too are suckers for a little luxury, especially when it comes at a reasonable price. It turns out that our Verdigris Mica Lexus GS 350 was one of the best sedans we have driven in a long time. This Lexus sports coupe is equipped with a level of performance and comfort that is currently unmatched by any other automaker offering a product in the same price category.

At just over $45,000, the Lexus GS 350 is a lot of car for the money, being both luxurious and stylish inside and out. The body is adorned with an attractive fast back roof line and comes with upscale details like HID headlamps and chrome accents on the exterior while rolling around on a set of fashionable 17 inch rims. On the inside, the Lexus features elegant wood trim and soft leather wrapped seats, shifter and steering wheel as well as a very forward thinking 7 inch touch screen display.

Our GS 350 is powered by a 3.5 Liter V6 that sends 303 HP straight to the rear wheels through a fuel efficient electronically controlled transmission that when combined with direct gasoline injection and continuously variable valve timing with intelligence gets 19 MPG in the city and 27 MPG on the highway. Either way you look at it, the GS 350 provides its owners with a very complete luxury vehicle experience.

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2009 Lexus LS 460

2009 Lexus LS 460

History

In 1989 Toyota launched something the world had never seen before, a Lexus. Six years earlier, Toyota Chairman Eiji Toyoda called a secret meeting where he posed the question, Can Toyota produce a luxury vehicle that is capable of taking on the best that the world, mainly Germany, has to offer? Immediately after the team of engineers, designers and marketing professionals commenced Toyota’s billion dollar F1 program. The result of their Flagship 1 program, the Lexus LS 400 was a luxury vehicle that would expand Toyota’s product line, securing the Japanese automaker a foothold in the premium automobile segment and provide both longtime Toyota and soon to be luxury car customers an upscale offering from Japan. That same year sales figures for the German luxury automobile manufacturers BMW and Mercedes-Benz dropped 29% and 19% respectively in the U.S. market. The luxury car was widely praised for its well-appointed and ergonomic interior, engine performance, build quality and value when it was introduced stateside with a very affordable $38,000 price tag.

Twenty years have passed and the Lexus LS is still being praised. The Japanese luxury car maker now operates its own design, engineering, and manufacturing centers, solely responsible for the production of Lexus vehicles. The model that started it all, the LS, is in its fourth generation and looking better than ever.

Continued after the jump.

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