Lexus will reveal the new RC F at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit on January 14, a sports thoroughbred model based on the RC coupe which made its debut in Tokyo in November.
The RC F is equipped with a new 5.0-litre V8 engine with a maximum output set to be well above 450bhp. Its status as the most powerful V8 road-going car Lexus has yet built is reflected in styling optimised for stability at high speeds, including wider wheels and tyres, an active rear wing, air scoops, cooling ducts and carbon fibre components. Each element delivers what Lexus calls “functional beauty” to the overall design.
The signature Lexus spindle grille dominates the front of the RC F, with a single F mesh section that extends all the way from the bonnet line to the lower lip. The bonnet is set higher than on the RC, helping create a powerful, flared profile true to the ethos of Lexus’s F models. Ducts beneath the front bumper and wings, and strategically placed aerodynamic stabilising fins create a stance that further broadcasts the model’s Lexus F pedigree.
Outlets to the rear of the front wings form an L shape where they merge with the side sill extensions. The car’s powerful character is also expressed in stacked, trapezoidal quad-outlet tailpipes.
The RC F displays design cues taken from the LFA supercar. An active rear wing automatically deploys at 80km/h (50mph) and retracts when speed falls below 40km/h (25mph), preserving the coupe’s svelte lines at standstill.
Three variations of a 10-spoke, 19-inch forged aluminium wheel design will be available, according to grade, including a set hand-polished by craftsmen.
The power of the exterior is matched by the cockpit design of the RC F’s interior. Features unique to the model include the meters, steering wheel, seats, trim detailing and pedals.
The instrument panel is dominated by a central dial, which automatically adapts in line with the coupe’s four different driving modes. In each case different information colour and text size are displayed.
To help ensure comfort, Lexus produced a new steering wheel design, with an elliptical cross-section, a thick grip and optimum location of shift paddles. The high-back seats are also new: finished with an embossed F on the headrests, their styling is inspired in part by modern high-tech athletic sportswear. Five leather trims will be available, all with contrast stitching.
Lexus’s close scrutiny of every element of the RC F extends to the design of L-shaped rubber slits in the brake and accelerator pedals – not just to look good, but also to provide better foot grip.
Lexus will unveil the RC F and host a press conference on its stand at the NAIAS at 08:45 local time (13:45 GMT) on 14 January.