Up till this Might, the Lexus flagship was a literal ship. The Lexus LY650 yacht measured greater than 65 toes lengthy, made as much as 2700 horsepower, and price almost $four million—till financial uncertainty torpedoed the venture.
The $102,025 LC500 convertible isn’t any yacht, however its material high folds in 15 seconds at speeds as much as 31 mph, and that is type of the identical factor. The solar in your face and the wind in your hair really feel simply as recent whether or not you are a billionaire sunbathing within the French Riviera or a mere millionaire headed to the lake home for the weekend.
Though it weighs a resolute 4500 kilos, we would not name the LC500 a barge. It is extra like a basic Chris-Craft for the street with a decent two-plus-two cockpit that appears out over a protracted and swish bow. Pin the best pedal, and the LC500 strikes like a ship rising on airplane. The naturally aspirated 471-hp V-Eight reveals a short lull because the tach winds up; it looks like a function that provides to the theatrics somewhat than a flaw. The 5.0-liter emits a hearty growl down low that builds right into a full-throated blare above 6000 rpm, sounding each bit as suggestive as a Jaguar F-type however with out the tawdry pops and crackles.
Determine on a zero-to-60-mph run within the mid-four-second vary and cornering grip nearer to 0.90 g than 1.00 g. That is simply fast sufficient and sticky sufficient for a automotive that is greatest loved at a brisk tempo, not an aggressive one. That is the type of automotive you’ll be able to drive whereas sporting Crocs and never really feel like try to be taking it extra severely. It’s straightforward to position by a quick sweeper and demonstrates admirable physique management on tough pavement. Not like the $93,975 coupe model, there’s some quiver and quake within the softtop LC500’s steering wheel that is borne from structural flex somewhat than street really feel, however this Lexus in any other case feels stable. The experience completely straddles the road between agency and mushy, with solely the biggest heaves and cracks within the street inflicting the LC to hammer on its non-obligatory $2650 solid 21-inch wheels (20s are customary).
There are higher decisions on this enviornment for driving quick. The Porsche 911 and the F-type high the checklist. The LC500 lands proper within the candy spot the place you anticipate a two-door Lexus to be. There is a clear connection to the model’s soft sedans and SUVs within the supple leather-based, the stainless detailing, and the sheer dimension of the factor. But the LC500 can also be a celebration of soulful, naturally aspirated engines and the enjoyment of open-air driving. It stirs feelings in ways in which BMW’s number-generating machines do not, and that is precisely the way it must be.
The one factor watering down the expertise is Lexus’s unfathomable infotainment system. It makes use of a trackpad, which is a foul beginning place, and will get worse by burying a number of key features deep within the menu construction, such because the heated seat controls. On a number of screens throughout the 10.3-inch show, you navigate between digital controls with left and proper swipes whereas up and down flicks toggle no matter setting you occur to be hovering over. You may suppose you have felt rage earlier than, however have you ever ever by accident turned on the ventilated passenger’s seat whereas attempting to activate the heated driver’s seat—for the third time in two days?
If you may make it previous this small element that is a serious nuisance, the LC500 convertible is a refreshing various to six-figure vehicles which are wrapped up in efficiency numbers. The LC locations the emphasis on the expertise: the sound of eight cylinders uncorked, the texture and scent of lush leather-based, and the sight of that sculpted physique that appears as if it have been forged in a single mould. We might like extra of this, please, all through the Lexus lineup and the higher trade.
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