Johannesburg - It’s probably been a while since you last saw a Lexus RC coupé on the roads - if ever - but it has been around for a few years and now there’s a new (ish) one for 2019.
The 4 Series rivalling two-door has been given a mid-life makeover in the form of a subtle exterior nip and tuck as well as various cabin refinements and a revised chassis.
The devil is in the detail here. A redesigned front bumper gives the RC a smoother look inspired by the larger LC, while headlights with triple-stacked micro LEDs and a new tick-shaped daytime running light design add some sparkle, as do the bolder L-shaped tail light lenses round back and the fresh 19-inch alloys.
New colour options include Lava Orange and Sparkling Meteor, with buyers now having 10 different exterior hues to choose from.
Only one derivative is offered to South African customers, this being the RC 350 F Sport, which carries over the previous 3.5-litre dual-injection normally aspirated V6 petrol engine. The motor produces 232kW at 6600rpm and 380Nm at 4800, sent to the rear wheels through an eight-speed torque converter automatic transmission. Lexus quotes a 0-100km/h sprint time of 6.3 seconds and a top speed of 230km/h.
The engine, gearbox and suspension system (which has adaptive damping) can be optimised through four driver-selectable modes, namely: Eco, Normal, Sport and Sport S+.
The latter two modes include newly developed G-sensor AI-Shift Control, which uses information from the G-sensor on driving status to provide the optimal gear ratio for performance driving.
Various enhancements have been made to the vehicle's aerodynamic systems, tyres and suspension, with the aim of improving responsiveness, stability and steering feel.
Lexus also paid close attention to the look and feel of the cockpit, with a number of minor detail changes aimed at creating a higher sense of quality. These include a new brushed treatment for the audio panels and heater controls and a stitching pattern for the driver’s palm rest, while a new analogue clock has been pinched from the LC’s cabin. Customers can choose from four interior trim colours: Flare Red, Black, White and Mustard.
The central command centre is a revised Remote Touch Interface, with the mouse-like control interface designed to amplify feedback. Also standard is a high-end audio system with Quantum Logic Immersion technology and a fully electric moon roof.
Driver assist gadgets come in the form of a revised Blind Spot Monitor with better detection capabilities as well as Lane Departure Alert with Lane Keeping Assist, a pre-crash system with Pedestrian Detection and Automatic High-Beam assist.
The RC 350 F Sport is all yours for R939 100.