Lexus SC 430 Pace Car
The Lexus SC is a personal luxury coupe that was built from 1991 through 2010. It features a front engine, rear-wheel drive design and seating for up to four passengers.
The second generation model, the SC 430, went into production in 2001. The SC 430 features a hardtop convertible design and a V8 engine.
At the 1999 Tokyo Motor Show, Lexus displayed its Sport Coupe concept, a V8-powered convertible, signifying its plans for a replacement for the first generation SC 300/400. The production version of its new sports coupe-convertible, the SC 430, debuted at the Paris Motor Show in 2000. The car was scheduled to go on sale in the second quarter of the following year. Power was provided by a 4.3 L 3UZ-FE V8 engine with variable valve timing (VVT-i) mated to a five-speed automatic transmission. This engine was the same model as that found in the UCF30 Lexus LS. The SC 430's V8 could produce 288 hp (214.76 kW) and 430 N·m (317 lb·ft) of torque, allowing the coupe to go from 0-60 mph in 6.2 seconds.
In contrast with the previous generation model, the redesigned Lexus SC was intended as a convertible from its inception. The development team was led by chief engineer Yasushi Nakagawa. Lexus designers from Europe and Japan worked together to create a streamlined design. Led by chief designer Sotiris Kovo, designers traveled to develop the vehicle's exterior shape, and studied the region's architecture, lifestyle, and harbors. The resulting convertible received character lines similar to the region's yachts, in contrast with traditional waveform lines. The vehicle's side profile, the product of extensive wind tunnel testing, was intended to channel air around the passenger compartment at high speed during top-down driving.
The SC 430 chassis featured a double-wishbone setup for both the front and rear wheels. The vehicle platform shared elements with the GS 430 sport sedan, including variable-assist power rack-and-pinion steering. Safety systems ranged from traction control to vehicle stability control. The convertible received a ULEV emissions certification rating.
The SC 430 featured a retractable aluminum hardtop, all-leather interior with brushed-aluminum accents, navigation screen with folding wood panel, and 18 inch aluminum wheels. Chrome Lexus emblems were mounted on the back of the front seat headrests. The coupe has four seat belts and could technically seat four, but rear seat space is limited. The hardtop fully retracts in 25 seconds.
Source: Wikipedia, 2011