Johannesburg - Japan’s rival to the BMW M4 and Mercedes-AMG C63 is now available to order in South Africa, ahead of its imminent local launch.

The hardcore Lexus RC F carries a price tag of R1 318 300 (see pricing versus rivals below), while the even harder-edged Track Edition is yours for R2 098 200.

Unlike the M4, the RC F has resisted the downsizing, turbocharging route, and is instead powered by a normally aspirated 5-litre V8 that produces a thundering 351kW at 7100rpm and 520Nm from 4800 revs. 

Power goes to the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic gearbox and at coastal climes (with Launch Control activated) the RC F should sprint from 0-100km/h in 4.3 seconds and reach a top speed of 270km/h, according to claims. Being normally aspirated, you are going to lose some of that potency at Reef altitudes, however.

While the Track Edition comes at a huge premium over the ‘standard’ spec, it does come with a raft of weight-saving measures, including carbon fibre and CFRP body panels, as well as ceramic brake discs, while aerodynamics are enhanced through a fixed carbon rear wing that adds up to 26kg of extra downforce, and a unique front lower spoiler.

The RC F’s late local arrival in fact coincides with the vehicle’s mid-life facelift, which in addition to subtle styling enhancements, brings a number of weight-saving measures, such as hollow rear half-shafts and a smaller air conditioning compressor, as well as various chassis enhancements, including stiffer bushings for the rear suspension arms and steering rack mounts. 

Adaptive Variable Suspension and Variable Gear Ratio Steering are fitted as standard to the RC F, while driver assistance gadgets come in the form of Lane Departure Alert with Lane Keep Assist and Steering Control, and Blind Spot monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert. 

The RC F and RC F Track Edition both roll on 19-inch alloy wheels, but the latter’s rims have a unique design and are finished in black.

Standard features include dual-zone climate control, a 17 speaker Mark Levinson audio system, LED auto-beam headlights and a moon roof.

PRICING VERSUS RIVALS

Lexus RC F Coupe 351kW/520Nm R1 318 300
BMW M4 Coupe 317kW/550Nm R1 325 061
BMW M4 Coupe Competition 331kW/550Nm R1 462 161
Mercedes-AMG C63 S Coupe 375kW/700Nm R1 623 015
BMW M4 Coupe CS 338kW/600Nm R1 864 341
Lexus RC F Coupe Track Edition 351kW/520Nm R2 098 200

IOL Motoring