Detroit Motor Show – Lexus is aiming to create a stir in the luxury coupé market with its new LC 500, which is due in SA in about a year from now.

Given its size, the new brand flagship is likely to be positioned somewhere between the BMW 6 Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupé and yet despite the fact that it’s positioned as more of a grand tourer than outright sports car, this new Lexus has its fair share of racy elements.

Its designers positioned the wheels as close to each corner as possible and practically perfected the weight distribution at 52:48 F:R, even positioning the drivetrain’s mass behind the front axle and plonking the driver as close as possible to the vehicle’s centre of gravity, where it feels the most engaging.

The LC 500 is the first Lexus vehicle to sit on the firm’s new premium rear-wheel drive platform that will also underpin the next LS and GS sedans.

Powering the rear wheels through a 10-speed automatic transmission is the same normally aspirated 5-litre V8 that does duty in the RC F. The high-revving motor kicks out 348kW and 527Nm, allegedly allowing the LC 500 to sprint from 0 –96km/h in under 4.5 seconds.

The LC’s exterior design, with its low, wide stance and dramatic curves, was inspired by the LF-LC concept that made its debut at the same show four years back. The cabin follows a similarly daring theme while many of its surfaces employ the detail-obsessed Takumi finishes.

Gadgets include the All-speed Dynamic Radar Cruise control with stop-and-go traffic function as well as Automatic High Beam and a Pre-Collision System.

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