Although originally intended as a concept to preview future styling themes, rave reviews following the reveal of the Lexus LF-LC concept at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show persuaded managers to put the stunning two-door into production. We now have photos of a prototype for the production version, which is expected to carry the LC title and go on sale sometime in 2017.
The prototype is clearly for a sleek, sporty coupe with 2+2 seating and proportions very similar to those of the LF-LC concept. And at the front sits a grille with elements similar to those featured on current Lexus models. According to our photographer, the prototype was being benchmarked against a BMW 6-Series and Porsche 911.
While there have been rumors the production version of the LF-LC concept will revive Lexus’ SC badge, trademark filings for “LC 500” and “LC 500h” made by parent company Toyota last year suggest the new Lexus coupe will be called a LC when it finally lands in showrooms. The trademark filings also provide clues as to the likely powertrains.
Lexus LF-LC Blue ConceptEnlarge Photo
The LC is expected to be offered initially with two powertrain options: an uprated version of the 467-horsepower 5.0-liter V-8 powering the 2015 RC F, and a new hybrid setup combining Lexus’ latest 3.5-liter V-6 with an electric motor for a total output in excess of 500 hp. You may recall that the LF-LC concept was said to be powered by a new hybrid drivetrain rated at over 500 hp as well. Further down the track an LC F dedicated performance model with a twin-turbocharged V-8 spitting out more than 600 hp may be launched.
Some of the technologies expected to appear on the new LC include a 10-speed automatic from Aisin AW; multi-material construction including components made from steel, aluminum and even some carbon fiber; and torque vectoring.
As mentioned above, the new Lexus coupe is expected to go on sale in 2017, meaning we’ll most likely see it arrive as a 2018 model. The car is expected to ride on a new rear-wheel-drive platform shared with the next-generation LS flagship sedan, which is due roughly one year earlier. Pricing for the LC should fall around the $100k mark.