5 things you should know about Lexus’ weapons-grade RC F Track Edition
Following the debut of their elegant LC Convertible concept earlier this week, Lexus dropped a performance-car bombshell with an updated RC F and new RC F Track Edition. The base model features a host of upgrades over its predecessor, but the limited-productions Track Edition is grabbing the attentions of many enthusiasts at this year’s North American International Auto Show. As such, here are 5 takeaways from the GT3-style Japanese performance coupe.
Lexus went to great lengths to reduce the weight of the Track Edition without compromising the refined-yet-powerful nature of the underlying RC F. On the outside, the car sports a carbon fiber roof, hood, and fixed trunk-mounted spoiler, while underneath, the team incorporated carbon bumper reinforcement and rear seat partition. All of these changes cut 176 pounds from the regular RC F.
In a world of downsized and boosted engines, the RC F remains one of the few holdouts for naturally aspirated V-8 power. Like the base car, the Track Edition features Lexus’ DOHC 5.0-liter unit, but tosses some additional spice into the mix. Revised engine tuning and intake routing provide an extra 5 hp and 6 lb-ft, bringing the total to 472 horsepower and 395 lb-ft of torque. Combine this with the standard titanium exhaust system for a symphony of sound that’s becoming increasingly rare this category.
Any time mass can be reduced and power tacked on, its safe to assume that performance numbers will see an improvement. And improve they did—the Track Edition boasts a 0-60 mph time of 3.96 seconds. But it’s not just the best-in-class power to weight ratio that’s helping out. Both RC F and Track Edition gain launch control functionality along with a more aggressive final drive ratio of 3.13:1, up from the previous car’s 2.93:1 gear set.
An all-star track machine needs both power and the capability to effectively scrub off the resulting velocity. Luckily, the Track Edition provides stopping power in spades with giant, 14.9-inch carbon-ceramic rotors. The big six-piston Brembo units hide behind 19-inch forged BBS wheels, inspired by the RC F GT3 race car, and wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires.
As the automaker’s first foray into the track-focused scene, the RC F Track Edition will be exclusive in both quantity and exterior hues. Colors options are limited to two choices: crisp Ultra White, and sinister Ultra Gray Matte. Availability is downright scarce, with only 60 total units being offered for the 2020 model year, although Lexus may consider ramping up production for 2021 if demand is high enough. Pricing has yet to be announced, but we feel the tangible upgrades and low volume should make it an interesting proposition.