Lexus’s 2018 LC 500 silences all doubts about Lexus’s ability to build pleasing cars.
The two-door LC is a correct grand tourer (from a Italian emgran turismo/em), an disdainful category of two-door coupes meant to communicate travelers over prolonged distances, during good speeds and in wealthy comfort.
By convention, they are superb and refined. They are encouraged by absolute gasoline engines and are some-more gently dangling than their sports-car counterparts.
The $92,000 LC 500 qualifies on all counts, right down to a 471-horsepower V-8 powerplant. The 5.0-liter engine delivers 398 pound-feet of torque to a back wheels around a 10-speed involuntary delivery and powers a 4280-pound coupe from 0-60 in 4.5 seconds.
Innovative two-transmission hybrid system
Turns out, though, that not even a GT bar can omit a mandates of a fuel-conscious automotive environment. And, given Lexus’s primogenitor association Toyota is a personality in hybrid technology, a hybridized LC was maybe inevitable.
That car, a 2018 LC 500h ($96,510), is a gas-electric hybrid with a ground-breaking hybrid complement dubbed Multi Stage Hybrid System (MSHS).
Per hybrid convention, it combines a outlay of a V-6 gasoline engine and a span of electric motors. The creation occurs with a doing of a second transmission, a required four-speed involuntary that piggybacks on a existent invariably non-static delivery (CVT).
Together, a dual transmissions group adult to discharge a CVT’s rubber-band effects and, in primer expostulate mode, emanate 10 gears and 9 dissimilar change points.
Quick and efficient
MSHS creates 354 horsepower, compared with a V-8’s 471, and bumps quell weight by about 100 pounds; still, a hybrid sensitively blows by a 0-60 scurry in 5 seconds. It can be driven in electric-only mode during speeds of adult to 87 mph.
More to a point, a 500h clobbers a kin during a pump, with an EPA-estimated 30 total (26 city/35 highway) opposite a 500’s 19/16/26.
Of course, we might consternation who drops $97G on a scintillating coupe usually to tatter about fuel efficiency.
I do, too.
Bold design, superb cabin
In possibly form, a LC satisfies a GT’s call for confidant design. Its wasp-waisted contours, honestly Italianate surfaces and video-game futurism (check out a mirrored taillights), cap in Lexus’s many constrained pattern this side of a LFA supercar. Surrounded by low creases, clever impression lines and robust shoulders, Lexus’s argumentative “spindle” griddle finds a loyal home here.
Inside, high-grade leather and superb suede doorway panels dress adult surfaces as prosaic and extended as a North Dakota wheat field.
The reduce lurch juts into a cabin, fixation a controls front and center. A leather-wrapped squeeze hoop sweeps adult from a core console to join a lurch and is mirrored by another hoop mounted to a newcomer door.
Unfortunate infotainment interface
Controls embody Lexus’s base-born touchpad infotainment interface. It’s ungainly underneath a best of resources and probably obsolete underway. Toyota’s smartphone-integration plan excludes ApplePlay and Android Auto and a homegrown surrogate is reduction superb than either.
Other real-life concerns embody a scarcity of infrequent storage spaces, undeveloped back seats and a miserly trunk.
The necessity of cubbies and bins valid irritating on a Seattle road-trip. Once there, though, we were means to things a 7-year-old and his automobile chair into a back seat, during not unsubstantial cost to a brazen passenger’s legroom.
Single, well-equipped trim
The LC 500h is accessible in one well-equipped trim, with several options packages on tap. Our tester enclosed a $1,790 Touring package, that brought 20-inch wheels, alcantara headliner, semi-aniline seperated leather and a overwhelming Mark Levinson surround-sound audio system.
Were we selling a GT segment, though, I’d pledge a hybrid’s potency for a V-8’s immediacy, a morality and a soundtrack.
The hybrid’s two-transmission setup infrequently stumbles while acid for a right gear. And it produces unsuitable shifts; some feel like an automatic’s, others some-more like a CVT’s. And, finally, a hybrid’s electronically mediated steering and braking systems feel synthetic and remote.
These are a concerns of an enthusiast, though, and GT buyers who value efficiency, beauty, comfort and peculiarity will find a good home in a 500h.
Contact Don during email@example.com.
2018 Lexus LC 500h
Vehicle bottom price: $92,000
Trim turn bottom price: $96,5610
As tested: $100,445 (including end and handling)
Options enclosed pre-collisions complement with walking detection; energetic journey control; lane-keep support and lane-departure warning with steering assist; involuntary high-beam headlamps; 20-inch fake aluminum wheels; alcantara headliner; exhilarated and leather-trimmed steering wheel; windshield wiper de-icer; tone heads-up display; navigation with 10.3-inch screen.
EPA ratings: 30 combined/26 city/35 highway
Premium unleaded fuel specified