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Lexus Needs a New Halo Car to Replace LF-A

Lexus Needs a New Halo Car to Replace LF-A

Production of the Lexus LF-A supercar ended on December 14th after only two years of production and 500 hand-built units. The LF-A has been a "the ultimate expression of Lexus quality and performance" and left in a period when Lexus was trying to "to reinvent itself as an emotional, pulse-pumping brand."

In a recent interview, Lexus Executive Vice President Kazuo said that Lexus needs a new halo car if the company really wants to "build a more emotional brand." However, this new halo car won’t have anything in common with the LF-A, and will be much cheaper than it.

However, Kazuo said that in the post-LF-A era, Lexus has different ideas for generating youthful excitement from the traditionally boring premium marque. This means the company wants to develop cars you may actually spot on the streets and are aimed at "mere mortals."

Lexus is currently interested in drawing in those young buyers who have just entered the luxury market and that are not interested in buying models from Lexus’ German rivals.

The only question is whether a new halo car fit Lexus’ new profile or not? Kazuo said that at this point there are no plans to replace the LF-A, but at the same time "If we want to build a more emotional brand, then we need a halo car."

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Lexus Builds its Last LF-A

Lexus Builds its Last LF-A

Everyone knows that all good things eventually come to an end. Well, the end for the amazing Lexus LF-A supercar has come, as the last of the 500 units set to be produced rolled out of the Motomachi Plant, Aichi Prefecture. The model — a white LF-A Nürburgring Package — was produced on December 14th and marks the end of production for Lexus very first supercar.

The manufacturing, vehicle assembly and painting of the LF-A supercar required a total of 170 hand-picked takumi workers and only one unit was built each day. The model was priced at $375,000 for the base version and at $445,000 for the Nürburgring package. This price makes the LF-A into the most expensive Japanese road car ever built.

For those of you that do not remember, the LF-A is powered by a 4.8-liter V-10 that delivers a total of 560 horsepower and sprints the car from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.7 seconds and up to a top speed of 202 mph.

LF-A chief engineer, Haruhiko Tanahashi, said "I’ve lived and breathed supercars for the past decade. Specifically one supercar, LF-A. Very few people have the opportunity we had to create a world-class supercar from a blank sheet of paper."

Now that Lexus is done building the LF-A Coupe, can we hope for a production version of the LF-A Roadster?

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Video: Lexus LF-A Nurburgring Edition takes on the Eclipse 500 Jet

Video: Lexus LF-A Nurburgring Edition takes on the Eclipse 500 Jet

It’s not hard to have an ego about yourself if you’re a supercar. You belong to that elite class that represents the fastest and most powerful cars in the world. Naturally, you feel like you can take on just about any challenge that comes your way, even if said challenge involves a plane.

The Lexus LF-A Nürburgring Edition found out firsthand what happens when you decide that all comers are worthy opponents. In this video, the Japanese supercar went toe to toe – tire to wing, if you want to get specific – with an Eclipse 500 business jet.

Not one to lack in confidence, the Scott Pruett-driven LF-A went about and handled its business pretty impressively, beating the Eclipse 500 Jet by 2.1 seconds after posting a time of 56 seconds.

Of course, circumstances - like the jet’s steep bank turn on the last leg - might have caused some variables in this race to change. Be that as it may, the Eclipse 500 still had a 150 mph head start compared to the LF-A starting the race idle.

Now we need to see how the Lexus supercar handles its business against an F-22.

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Video: Did the Lexus LF-A AD-X break its namesake's Nurburgring record?

Video: Did the Lexus LF-A AD-X break its namesake’s Nurburgring record?

7:14. That’s the current record time held by the Lexus LF-A around the Nurburgring. Pretty impressive, right?

Well, it looks like Lexus thinks it can do better and last week, the Japanese automaker took to the Nurburgring to attempt a single lap with their latest one-off LF-A model, the AD-X.

The video shows us glimpses of the LF-A AD-X’s hot lap around the Nurburgring. It doesn’t say whether the ADX was able to break its namesake’s record, but with all the modifications fitted into this one-off race car - the enormous rear wing, the small winglets, and the carbon fiber diffuser are only a few of the modifications done to this mighty racer - we’d be disappointed if the AD-X wasn’t able to shed off a few seconds off of the LF-A’s Nurbugring lap record.

The video comes courtesy of BridgestoGantry.com and even they don’t know if the LF-A AD-X managed to break the record, but like they said, if the one-off race car was able to do it, you can be sure that Lexus will tell the whole world about it sooner than later.

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2012 Lexus LF-A National Breast Cancer Awareness Edition

2012 Lexus LF-A National Breast Cancer Awareness Edition

Earlier this month, we ran a top 10 column on some of the best pink cars we’ve ever seen as part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

The thing is, if this Japanese beauty was released earlier, it would’ve almost certainly made it on that list.

This pink Lexus LF-A comes by way of Lexus of Brisbane in Australia to show their support of National Breast Cancer Awareness month. It’s probably the only pink Lexus in Australia, maybe even the world, so you know that there’s a special uniqueness to it. And since it’s an LF-A, it’s got all-world performance credentials, thanks in large part to a 4.8-liter V10 engine that produces 562 horsepower with a 0-62 mph time of 3.7 seconds a top speed of 202 mph.

The car was built with the help of the Faingaa Twins, Ant and Saia, two brothers who play professional rugby in Australia, and more importantly, are both ambassadors for the National Breast Cancer Foundation.

Needless to say, these guys sure know how to make the kind of statement that resonates to a lot of people.

“Along with donations, auction items and support of the Fainga’a Twins Charity Golf Day, going pink is our way reminding all of Brisbane that October is the month of Breast Cancer Awareness,” said Lexus of Brisbane dealer principal Andrew Scifleet.

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2013 Lexus LF-A AD-X Special Edition

2013 Lexus LF-A AD-X Special Edition

The Nurburgring has been pretty crowded with supercars in the past week with the Mercedes SLS Black Edition and the Audi R8 GT making their testing appearances on the "Green Hell." Now, a new hardcore Lexus LF-A has also been caught testing at the track. Joining the previous AD-A and AD-B prototypes spotted, the new AD-X looks like an even more track-focused version of the LFA!

At first glance, anyone would believe that this is just a regular LF-A Nurburgring Edition, but a closer look would reveal some significant changes. While the first two prototypes used a blue-carbon fiber combination and a green finish with carbon fiber, this prototype’s color reminds us of the classic Porsche 911 Carrera RS.

Other changes include the carbon fiber roof, pillars, and spoiler, as well as the front air splitter which is much more pronounced, sticking out quite a bit further than the splitter we’ve seen on the LF-A Nurburgring Edition.

Since a standard LF-A delivers 552 HP out of its V10 engine, it is very probable that this model will get an increased output of up to 600 HP.

Excited yet? Well, hold your horses because the Lexus LF-A AD-X Special Edition will only be produced as a one-off.

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Video: It's Customer Appreciation Day, Lexus LF-A Style

Video: It’s Customer Appreciation Day, Lexus LF-A Style

Lexus held its first-ever LF-A owners event at the Laguna Seca Raceway on August 23, 2012. This was the perfect opportunity for us to watch a bunch of LF-A supercars in action on the famous raceway.

A Lexus LF-A is powered by a 4.8 liter V10 that delivers a maximum output of 560 HP at 9,000 RPM and a peak torque of 354 lb-ft at 6,800 RPM. In this video, there’s no less than 16 supercars, so our mathematical abilities calculate that there was about 8,960 HP in just one place! Now that’s some math we like to do.

Aside from featuring the Lexus LF-A’s as they do their thing on the track, the video also features Watch Scott Pruett, pro driver, as he gives some helpful hints to nearly two dozen owners. These owners then got to try their hand at one of the most prestigious race tracks in the country. We bet every owner left with a smile on their face that day.

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Lexus and Gazoo Racing Celebrate the LFA's Fifth Anniversary at Nurburgring With an Awesome Video

Lexus and Gazoo Racing Celebrate the LFA’s Fifth Anniversary at Nurburgring With an Awesome Video

Building a racecar is a tall task, but building one that is to endure the stresses of running at full bore for 24 hours is a real test. Since 2008, Lexus and Gazoo racing have partnered up to bring the Lexus LFA to SP8 endurance class. Every year that the LFA took to the starting grid at the Nürburgring 24, there were issues. Be it a vehicle-disabling wreck, mechanical malfunction, or simply poor performance, the team never finished higher than 41st overall.

In 2012, the team showed up at the Nürburgring as humbled as they had ever been, calling themselves rookies, despite five years of running the race. The humbleness and hard word paid off for the team this year, as is took home the top spot in the SP8 class and 15th place overall. This was the first time since the Dodge Viper GTS won in 2001 and 2002 that a non-German automaker won the SP8 class.

In celebration of this notorious victory, and the five years of knuckle busting wrench turning and headache-inducing engineering that Lexus and Gazoo has endured, the two have released a video chronicling its journey to success. Sure, the video is very short – only 4:14 – but the detail covered in such a short period of time is simply incredible.

The team lets you into the action and if you don’t get into the video, you may want to check your pulse real quick. There is some awesome sound too, so make sure you have your speakers or headphones cranked up.

Enjoy!

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Video: Trio of Lexus LFAs perform lovely 'Japanese ballet'

Video: Trio of Lexus LFAs perform lovely ’Japanese ballet’

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!

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Car Infographics: The Supercars of the 2012 Olympics

Car Infographics: The Supercars of the 2012 Olympics

The 2012 Summer Olympics are in full swing now and medals are quickly adding up. We started wondering what about the varying cars of the world? There is no auto racing in the Olympics and a love of awesome cars is one thing that is shared throughout the entire world. So why not include them?

Here at Topspeed, we felt it was time to give our 4-wheeled friends a fair chance and display the top supercars from each of the countries participating in the 2012 Summer Games – those that produce supercars. So let’s have a look at what these countries have to offer. You may be surprised to find out what countries produce some awesome supercars and what ones don’t produce any at all.

We stand to learn a lot about the world of supercars while putting this piece together, so we are certain you will learn a ton right along with us.

Click past the jump to read our entire list and check out our full infographic.

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Video: Lexus launches "Unleash the LFA" contest

Video: Lexus launches "Unleash the LFA" contest

A few days ago, Lexus launched a video called "Unleash the LFA," together with the promise that we would see something big on August 1st. Of course, we were all hoping to see a special edition LF-A, especially considering all of the spy shots we have seen in the past few weeks - like the images of the AD-A and the AD-B prototypes.

Unfortunately, the issuance of a special edition never happened. Instead, Lexus has announced an "Unleash the LF-A" contest that will provide viewers an opportunity to get behind the wheel of a real Lexus LF-A supercar on a private race track. Not exactly a special edition, but at least Lexus wasn’t lying when Etienne Plas, senior manager of product communications for Lexus Europe, said, "We have no plans to produce and sell any new special edition of the LFA."

Lexus is celebrating the launch of their new "Golden Opportunity Sales Event" by offering one lucky guy the chance to climb behind the wheel of an LFA. All you have to do to enter the contest is launch the contest app), fill out the entry form, and you could win a trip to Salinas California to spend the day at the Skip Barber Racing School where you will have exclusive one-on-one time with professional race-car driver Scott Pruett.

Interested Facebookers have until August 21, 2012 to put in their entries and one random winner will be selected on August 24, 2012. Good luck!

For full legal mumbo-jumbo, visit the Lexus Facebook page.

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2012 Lexus LFA 'Project Reignfire' by PUR Wheels

2012 Lexus LFA ’Project Reignfire’ by PUR Wheels

With Lexus recently confirming that the two mysterious LFA prototypes spotted near the Nurburgring will never hit production, PUR Wheels recently took matters into their own hands by creating one of their most tasteful projects thus far: ‘Project Reignfire.’

Fitting a set of 21”, three-piece, forged aluminum 4OUR DEPTH wheels to this stunning red LFA helps to really bring the entire Japanese supercar package together by adding to the overall street appeal of this particular LFA immensely.

Finished in gloss Lumiere grey, the 4OUR DEPTH wheels help to accentuate the lines of the LFA, with the low profile tires also doing wonders for the overall look of the car.

No performance tuning has been conducted on this particular LFA, but after looking at the LFA’s stock spec sheet, it’s no wonder that PUR wheels decided to keep all the mechanics stock! Featuring a 4.8-liter V10 engine, the size of a traditional V8 and the weight of a V6, that delivers 552 horsepower at 8,800 rpm and 354 lb-ft of torque at 6,800 rpm, the LFA is unquestionably a true performance car.

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