Can you believe Lexus makes this thing? Really think about it. It’s a two-door, futuristic coupe with a naturally aspirated V8 and a truly stunning interior that’s being produced in the modern era, all from the brand that brings us the UX and, by way of the parent company, the Corolla.

This Lexus LC 500 is for sale on Cars & Bids. Go check it out and bid here.  

When the LF-LC concept debuted in 2012 at the North American International Auto Show, it seemed like another tease of something that would never exist. However, when it eventually came out two years later, and it looked every bit as stunning as the concept car; it was truly shocking.

It wasn’t until recently that I got to experience one, and it pleasantly surprised and intrigued me, especially from an engineering perspective.

In order to maintain its sensational looks, engineers had to get clever, specifically with suspension packaging. Space comes at a premium and as a result, the engineers went with a multilink suspension design as opposed to double-wishbones. 

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The breadth of their creativity is most evident up front. Lexus engineers used a double A-arm design, meaning that there are two small A-arms with individual ball joints at the top of the suspension unit. This design ensures that the bottom control arm mimics any movements at the top of the suspension unit, resulting in very stable and solid steering. Staying creative, engineers designed specific brackets for each A-arm that attach to the strut tower. This solution not only resolves the spatial problem but also makes these components even easier to service, as the electronically adjustable KYB struts doesn’t have to be removed to replace them – very clever and practical.

Lexus also added rear-wheel-steering to the LC, helping to mask this car’s size and weight. This is further optimized on later iterations of the car, where the Performance Dynamic Handling Package added variable steering to make the handling more precise. Even so, Lexus understood that this car was focused on being a GT car, but it handles more spryly than you might anticipate.

Then there’s its engine, which makes the LC 500 one of the best-sounding cars currently on sale. It’s also the most shocking part of the LC, as it’s a naturally aspirated, 5.0-liter V8 in a modern car. That’s incredibly rare. The only companies left making an NA V8 for the U.S. market are Hyundai with the Genesis G90, Chevrolet with the Camaro and Corvette (in a couple different trims), Dodge with the Challenger and Charger RTs, Ford with the Mustang 5.0, and Lexus with the IS500, the RCF, and this – that’s it. 

Gallery: 2019 Lexus LC500 For Sale On Cars And Bids

To see a naturally aspirated engine currently in production is definitely a rarity. However, this one “only” makes 471 horsepower and 398 lb-ft of torque. Considering that this car weighs over 4,200 pounds, it’s not exactly fast, getting from 0 to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds. But that’s not the point. Lexus asserts that they wanted this engine for its responsiveness and its sound. There’s a tube that directs frequencies from the intake into the cabin, a trick that Lexus learned from the LFA, all with the intention of celebrating the 2UR-GSE V8. I guess after offsetting emissions with enough Priuses, Toyota felt that Lexus could have a little fun.

Lexus being Lexus, though, the engine had to be efficient. It uses direct ported fuel injection, combining the attributes of porting and direct injection. The benefit of the former is that the air-fuel mixture is optimized at low RPMs, resulting in a more efficient burn, and the benefit of the latter is that the air inside the combustion chamber remains relatively cool, reducing the probability of knocking. Combining the two allows the engineers to get clever with valve overlapping and cam phasing to be more extreme with the engine’s advanced timing, allowing it to be more efficient and powerful than it otherwise would have been.

This engine, combined with the striking exterior, gorgeous interior, and competent suspension design, means that the LC is a wonderfully experiential car – plus, it’s a Lexus, meaning you know it will be reliable for years to come. Sure, it is not the fastest car, but it’s unique, comfortable, and enjoyable. Granted, combined with its high MSRP, this is probably why the car seems to attract an more “mature” audience. Still, the LC marks an end to cars like this, and it deserves more attention as it’s a unique object, especially right now – it’s a truly special car.

This article was produced as part of our editorial partnership with Cars & Bids, the online auction marketplace to buy and sell modern enthusiast cars. 

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