Overwhelming support for the Lexus LF-LC concept, which was first shown at the Detroit Auto Show in January, has meant that Lexus is likely to produce the more affordable LFA alternative.
Enthusiasm and interest at Detroit was such that Toyota registered the LF-LC trademark in February, post-motor show. US industry journal Automotive News is now quoting Lexus insiders who have confirmed a production version will “almost certainly” come to market. Additionally, a company official said “There has been a lot of interest from dealers and distributors.”
Lexus dealers recently received a crystal sculpture with a 3D laser etching of the LF-LC. On the outside, the sculpture reads ’2012 GS Challenge … 27 500 Sales’ – meaning if dealers hit the target they will get the supercar. With Lexus now the third biggest luxury auto brand in the U.S. behind BMW and Mercedes-Benz, a launch date for the production LF-LC could be accelerated to within three years to help the brand regain its long-held sales crown.
Sources at Lexus have said a production version of the LF-LC would be something of a Lexus LFA ‘lite’ without the US$375 000 price tag, instead targeting upscale performance cars like the Porsche 911 Turbo and Aston Martin Vantage.
As a refresher, the LF-LC concept car is a front-engined, rear-wheel drive, hybrid and features a new evolution of the brand’s “L-Finesse” styling language. The concept features extravagantly-styled and hand-crafted headlights and taillights, a sumptuous leather-wrapped interior, lightweight panoramic glass roof and, unique to the LF-LC, a new take on the brand’s ‘Spindle’ grille design.