Lexus is not really synonymous with performance cars. The Japanese firm is better known for luxury saloons and SUVs, even though it has produced the odd high-performance model, such as the LFA. Well, the Lexus RC F Track Edition is looking to change that image. Good news for fans of the brand, Lexus SA confirmed with us today that the radical-looking model will be heading to SA at some point in 2018.
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A new addition
The Lexus RC F Track Edition was launched at the Detroit Motor Show taking place in the US at the moment. This limited-edition model was created for hardcore driving. Lexus says the RC F Track Edition is capable of turning hot laps all afternoon and being driven home from the track that night.
To aid performance the Lexus RC F Track Edition boasts improved aerodynamics, reduced mass, a retuned suspension and styling that would look at home on a racecar.
Under that black bonnet is a normally aspirated 5,0-litre V8 that produces 352 kW and 535 N.m. An eight-speed automatic transmission delivers drive to the rear axle. The RC F range now includes electronic launch control as standard. Helping to harness that power are Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres that were designed specifically for the RC F. Lexus says the RC F Track Edition is capable of launching from zero-to-96 km/h in 3,96 seconds.
A number of aerodynamic upgrades set the Track Edition apart from its cooking variety counterpart. A splitter along with canards on the bumper increases front-end downforce. It is balanced by a diffuser and fixed rear wing made from carbon-fibre. Lexus says that the wing simultaneously reduces drag and adds downforce. A set of lightweight 19” BBS forged alloy wheels are the final sporty touch.
A major diet
Lexus’ official press release says that the RC F Track Edition was developed with input from Lexus race teams in the Super GT and IMSA series, however, the big news is the reduction in mass.
Preliminary estimates put the total reduction of mass at 80 kg. Lexus engineers focussed on reducing unsprung mass to improve handling and steering feel. Every Track Edition model is fitted with Brembo carbon ceramic brake rotors that are lighter and better able to withstand the extreme heat cycling associated with performance driving.
Additional mass was removed by using carbon-fibre for the roof, bonnet, partition behind the rear seats and bumper reinforcements. A titanium exhaust system is also standard.