In a world where it seems SUVs are out to take over everything that the automobile stands for, Lexus has decided to buck the trend for NAIAS 2019, and instead has chosen Detroit to debut a trio of new cars.
In addition to the fore-mentioned LC Convertible concept, Lexus is also debuting much needed updates to the 2020 Lexus RC F, as well as the limited edition RC F Track Edition in an attempt to make the RC F a true contender to some of the best that Germany and Italy have to offer.
2020 Lexus RC F:
Before we get to the main course, we might as well start with a figurative appetizer, and dive into the suite of updates that define the 2020 Lexus RC F. Like the face lifted RC coupe that debuted at the Paris Auto Show, Lexus engineers have applied many of that models tweaks to the spicier F model giving it a small nip and tuck in the process.
The front and rear fascias are tweaked, with the front fascia arguably being the most noticeable change thanks to reworked headlights that now incorporate the daylight running lights into them for a much cleaner and cohesive look. The big spindle grille has also had some work done, and now embodies a lower lip that stretches across the entire bottom of the car. Lexus claims that this particular change was designed to try and make the front end seem smaller than it really is, but we are still on the fence about whether Lexus has indeed achieved this feat. Wider LED taillights allow the F to fall in line with its mainstream counterparts, and also allow the RC F to look much more aggressive at the same time.
In addition to the plastic surgery it has received, Lexus engineers have also massaged five extra horsepower and 6 extra lb-ft out of the 5.0 liter V8 for a revised total of 472 horsepower and 395 lb-ft of torque.
All of this muscle is channeled to the rear wheels through the same eight speed automatic that sees duty in the current RC F, but Lexus engineers have added a higher final drive ratio which helps improve response while standard electronically operated launch control adds some much needed drama to acceleration runs.
Lexus also embarked on a minor diet with the RC F to try and cut some weight, and it has done so with aluminum components especially on the front end. It is unknown how much weight Lexus managed to cleave, but look for it to be an improvement over the old car’s 3,900 plus curb weight.
2020 Lexus RC F Track Edition:
But what if all the performance of the standard RC F is still not enough for your extreme driving needs one might be asking? Lexus has you covered here too, and has unveiled the limited production RC F Track Edition.
At first glance, the exterior styling may seem tacked on in places, but Lexus claims that each component of the RC F Track Edition serves a unique and distinct purpose. Like its standard cousin, the RC F Track Edition benefits from many of the styling and powertrain updates that aim to give its base exterior canvas a reboot, and breath some newfound vigor into the 5.0 liter V8 with the RC F being one of the few performance models remaining that still offers a naturally aspirated V8.
However, the Track Edition takes things a bold step further, and introduces even more weight shedding in an attempt to transform the RC F into a bona fide track star. Lexus claims that it shaved 176 lbs of flab off of this special model, and while this means it is still heavier than a comparable BMW M4 CS, that isn’t stopping the Japanese luxury brand from highlighting some of the other benefits that this decrease brings to the RC F.
For example, alot of this loss comes from a major infusion of carbon fiber, with the roof and hood being made out of the lightweight material along with the seat partition between the front and rear seats as well as the rear spoiler.
Other notable hardware upgrades include 19-inch forged BBS alloy wheels that house Brembo carbon ceramic brakes. These two items alone help shed 55 lbs of unsprung weight from the car and that’s on top of the 175 lbs already shed. Look for the interior to also feature healthy amounts of carbon fiber, as well as spicier racing seats for more track side support.
Rumor suggests that only 60 units of the RC F Track Edition will be coming to the U.S. market, but we will have to wait until the model is formally unveiled at the 2019 North American International Auto Show on Monday to find out if Lexus will indeed confirm that particular rumor or not.
Carl Malek has been an automotive journalist for over 10 years. First starting out as a freelance photographer before making the transition to writing during college, his work has appeared on numerous automotive forums as well as websites such as Autoshopper.com.
Carl is also a big fan of British vehicles with the bulk of his devotion going to the Morgan Motor Company as well as offerings from Lotus, MG, and Caterham. When he is not writing about automobiles, Carl enjoys spending time with his family and friends in the Metro Detroit area, as well as spending time with his adorable pets.