2017 Lexus LC 500 – a show car you can actually buy


It’s taken four long years, but my, have they been worth it – after the stunning Lexus LF-LC concept was revealed in 2012, it has finally made the trek to production in the form of the 2017 Lexus LC 500 at the 2016 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) today ahead of its on sale date sometime next year.

Stop rubbing your eyes (we know, we did so too) – we did not accidentally publish photos of the original concept car. What you see here is exactly what you’ll be able to buy off the showroom floor, right next to your uncle’s LS 460. The company claims the astonishing design is a culmination of a “heightened collaboration between design and engineering groups and their commitment to help overcome each other’s hurdles.”

The result is that the styling has stayed incredibly faithful to that of the show car, from the dramatic, sensuous, impossibly low-slung forms, to the distinctive triangular headlights with three small LED projectors (apparently one of the smallest in production, contributing to a low bonnet height and short front overhang) and striking arrow-shaped tail lights. Only the addition of more practical door mirrors and flush door handles make the LC’s design appreciably different from the LF-LC.


Options include a carbon fibre roof (a glass roof is fitted as standard), an active rear spoiler and 21-inch forged aluminium wheels to replace the standard 20-inch machined cast aluminium items.

Inside, it’s just as striking, with a minimalist driver-focused cockpit, dominated by a central spar that rises from the transmission tunnel. And when we say driver-focused, we really mean it – the driving position has been engineered to be as close as possible to the car’s centre of gravity to provide the most amount of feedback to the driver, while optional sport seats offer added bolstering and lateral support when cornering.

There’s more – attention has been placed on details such as the size and angle of the steering wheel, the feel and positioning of the magnesium alloy paddle shifters and the optional leather and Alcantara upholstery, all to provide “an engaging yet seductive atmosphere for the driver.”


Debuting on the LC 500 is the 2017 Lexus Multimedia system with updated software that is faster and more flexible, with a new graphic user interface and the ability to add future updates. As usual, a Mark Levinson sound system is available as an option, but there’s now a new Pioneer system that is standard-fit, developed in collaboration with the car’s body and cabin designers to enhance the sound within the interior.

In terms of safety, the LC 500 comes with the Lexus Safety System + package – utilising millimeter-wave radar and a camera – that adds All-speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (All-speed DRCC) that works in stop-and-go traffic, Pre-Collision System (PCS), Lane Keep Assist (LKA) and Automatic High Beam (AHB).

As expected, under the bonnet sits the high-revving all-aluminium 5.0 litre naturally-aspirated V8 from the RC F and GS F, developing 467 hp and 527 Nm. Matched to a 10-speed automatic transmission – the first in the luxury segment, Lexus would like to boast – it will sprint from 0-100 km/h in under 4.5 seconds.


Going hand-in-hand with the performance of the car, the sound of the engine was also focused on here, with a dual intake inlet that also improves airflow into the V8. There’s also an active exhaust with baffles that open over 3,500 rpm – or all the time in Sport mode – as well as a “sound generator” with tuned acoustic plumbing.

Beneath the skin, the LC 500 rides on Lexus’ all-new premium rear-wheel drive luxury platform, part of the global architecture for luxury vehicles (GA-L), that will also underpin all of Lexus’ upcoming front-engine, rear-drive models. The positioning of mass was key, with most of it packaged in a more centralised and lower position to improve centre of gravity.

Among these measures, the battery has been moved to the boot, and there’s no spare tyre – the LC 500 rides on run-flat Michelin Pilot Super Sport tyres. In addition, the aforementioned carbon roof, aluminium door skins on carbon fibre inner structures and a composite boot floor also help deliver an almost perfect 52:48 weight distribution front-to-rear.

The bodyshell is said to be the stiffest Lexus has ever built, with strategic use of high-tensile steel providing higher torsional rigidity than even the LFA‘s carbon structure. Adding to the strength are special engine compartment bracing, stiff aluminium front suspension towers and a ring structure near the rear fenders.

Suspension-wise, the multilink system has double ball joints on upper and lower control arms for more precise steering response and optimised suspension geometry for increased wheel control. All but one of the control arms are made from lightweight forged aluminium to reduce unsprung mass and further improve suspension response.

All in all, it’s pretty stunning, isn’t it? What do you think of the LC 500’s looks? Sound off in the comments section after the jump.

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Jonathan Lee

After trying to pursue a career in product design, Jonathan Lee decided to make the sideways jump into the world of car journalism instead. He therefore appreciates the aesthetic appeal of a car, but for him, the driving experience is still second to none.



  • Bugatti on Jan 12, 2016 at 11:46 am

    A show car you can buy, but probably won’t even if you could afford it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 8
    • AutoFrenz (the original) on Jan 12, 2016 at 12:19 pm

      OMG…STUNNING, MAGNIFICENT, MARVELOUS, GORGEOUS, SIMPLY AMAZING…IT WORKS YES IT WORKS…need we say more…nah…just shut up n enjoy the beauty of a bautiful creation from Lexus…u nailed it big time Lexus!!!!!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 1
  • automatic high beam..
    great features for those rich ahbengs

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
  • FIST (Member) on Jan 12, 2016 at 11:53 am

    put it in fast and furious 8 please

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0
  • Jonn Dol on Jan 12, 2016 at 11:53 am

    Stunning to say the least. As an overall package, this car could challenge the best of the German & European GTs.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2
  • kington on Jan 12, 2016 at 11:54 am

    Kudos to them for sticking so much with the prototype.

    But what i fear for this car is where does it stand? Does it go head on with the 6 Series, or the more luxurious MErc S coupe and Bentleys? It seems a bit too low slung for a GT, almost like an R8.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2
    • TopsyBoXyTurvy on Jan 12, 2016 at 12:30 pm

      Thats the point: this car stands on its own. Unique. Why fear? Be proud.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 0
    • W204 C63 AMG on Jan 12, 2016 at 1:15 pm

      The 6 series and S class coupe are its main rivals.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1
    • Lexus mentioned it benchmarks with the 650i, sound of the Maserati GT, and overall dynamics of the 911.

      Read more on the development process here:


      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
  • Jonn Dol on Jan 12, 2016 at 11:54 am

    Stunning to say the least. As an overall package, this car could challenge the best of the German & European GTs. But to satisfy the HP nuts, maybe Lexus could add a couple of turbos on the engine..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1
  • chowhai on Jan 12, 2016 at 11:56 am

    That brown interior is hideous

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 12
  • TopsyBoXyTurvy on Jan 12, 2016 at 11:59 am

    Wow, im hooked. This is not abt the how much horse power, the top speed, how fast arnd the ring etc. This is abt engineering beyond beauty and class. It’s hard to describe but it draws you staright away with a “wow” coming out from ur mouth.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 22 Thumb down 0
  • Rehome_01 on Jan 12, 2016 at 12:03 pm

    Looks stunning from any angle!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0
  • sepul on Jan 12, 2016 at 12:11 pm

    I thought this was another Lexus concept car when I first saw the photos. Damn what a beaut!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0
  • alex_in_the_house on Jan 12, 2016 at 12:58 pm

    …waiting lexus hater to said “it’s just another toyota, i’d rather go with the german marque because more prestige, blah blah blah”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0
  • For the first time I saw a Lexus with “soulful” interior otherwise it just practical and logic.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
  • forrest the tree on Jan 12, 2016 at 1:24 pm

    The back design, just like crying face with tears.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2
  • flipper2uman (Member) on Jan 12, 2016 at 1:57 pm

    Simply Gorgeous!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0
  • ae101 on Jan 12, 2016 at 2:04 pm

    This is really masterpiece. Damn cun

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0
  • shawal on Jan 12, 2016 at 3:51 pm

    One of thee best cars ever to grace the blacktop, stunning inside and out…

    A coupe has to be selfish, and exclusive, hopefully that bespoke interior stays exclusive to that car….

    I tot d s class coupe was untoppable in terms of looks but lexus has somehow managed thag, at least to these eyes, cuz looks will always be a subjective matter….

    maybe in d future it’llpack a 3.0/3.5 twin turbo v6 as an entry point…

    or a twin turbo v8 LCF to prove a point…

    nonetheless, an awesome halo car for the brand…

    AM had its one-77
    bmw with it’s x6, x4
    VW group has the veyron

    n lexus had d LFA, n now this, to show thr world that, yeah we have deep wallets, and sometimes we do let our hair down and drive the car scene wild…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
  • Auntie on Jan 12, 2016 at 5:28 pm

    Automatic High Beam is the most stupid invention I ever known to be honest.
    The high beam activate automatically and usually irritates the driver when shining bright onto other road users including pedestrian, drivers and passenger.
    Be smart to switch on the high beam, not just thinking about oneself, but also think and considerate about other user.
    Actually without the AHB, driving at night and dawn really irritates me with other driver shining others with high beam. Can’t just imagine while driving, and someone shine brightly straight to the eyes like the sunlight?
    By the way, Lexus produces nice car these days in it’s own class. Is good they kept the NA but we hope for more horsepower with a high revving engine?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0
    • Well actually many latest auto beam can detect oncoming traffic and adjust accordingly.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
  • sewel on Jan 12, 2016 at 11:43 pm

    10 speed? Why not put truck gearbox?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0
  • skatax on Jul 12, 2016 at 5:12 pm

    What’s the point of engineering integration if the exhaust tip is fake? I learned this from Jalopnik. Fake exhaust tips = not cool.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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