Watch The Lexus LC500 Hot Lap At VIR (LIGHTNING LAP 2017)

Lap Time: 3:04.8
Class: LL3
Base Price with Performance-Enhancing Options: $102,975
As-Tested Price: $105,345
Power and Weight: 471 hp • 4394 lb • 9.3 lb/hp
Tires: Michelin Pilot Super Sport ZP, F: 245/40RF-21 96Y R: 275/35RF-21 99Y

LEXUS, CARS, LAP, AUTOMOBILE, TECH NEWS, TECHNOLOGY, TECHNEWS, TECH,


Those of you wondering if the empire of Toyota would ever produce another pretty car have at last been given hope. The LC500 may not please all eyes from every angle, and for some it may look like a racing amoeba. But its alluringly low hoodline and muscular stance mean your head, like that of an owl following a 4394-pound mouse, tends to swivel when this trinket of post-postmodernism scurries past. 



Lexus has learned a few things about how to make a driver’s car, this one’s prodigious curb weight notwithstanding. First, the LC sounds the business, the 471-hp V-8 making a sumptuous bawl as the car strains for lap times. Second, the reassuring steering, fast-acting transmission, and stout brakes were as much on point as the supplied Bridgestone Potenza S001 RFTs would allow before they got greasy with heat.


Still, we struggled to get the car turned as sharply as we would have liked to while keeping the rear end in line, leading to lap times close to 3:07. It wasn’t until the final day that we noticed that the spare set of tires Lexus had shipped with the car were not in fact more Bridgestones but the other factory fitment: Michelin Pilot Super Sports. Doh! Those went on and more than two seconds immediately fell off the lap time, the LC now able to pull 0.95 g in Turn 1, post an arousing 111.3-mph average speed through the esses, and keep it together through an entire lap.

Let’s not overstate the point; this is still a fairly soft and supremely comfortable touring coupe, a sort of Buck Rogers Thunderbird seemingly targeted at people who remember Buck Rogers and Thunderbirds. It shows its roly-poly side when forced to do track work, but it does make the best of the situation and ultimately landed in the standings exactly where we thought it would.





RELATED ARTICLES