Advertisement

Lexus LF-LC Sports Car Could Be Made, Will It Be A Hybrid?

Follow Antony

Lexus recently sold the last example of its LFA supercar to a lucky buyer--leaving the Japanese luxury automaker without a high-performance flagship.

That could change with the news Lexus intends to produce the LF-LC sports car, first seen as a concept vehicle at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show.

According to Wards Auto, Lexus has confirmed the LF-LC will go into production, possibly badged LC 550.

What isn't clear is exactly what drivetrain the performance coupe will use. The concept car, like many Lexus and Toyota concepts these days, used a hybrid powerplant. This sent its efforts to the rear wheels, in a classic front-engine, rear-drive layout.

While touted as a replacement for the discontinued SC 430 sports car, it's also unclear how many Lexus will make--it's likely to be limited production and priced higher than the brand's mainstream products.

It's just one element of future Lexus strategy, revealed to Wards by Brian Smith, Lexus' vice-president of marketing.

Among them were confirmations that Lexus is not interested in making diesel vehicles, despite increasing competition from European diesel rivals. According to Smith, Lexus' European competitors are "sort of forced to go diesel because that’s where their skill set is. And I think it still remains to be seen the acceptance of diesel in the U.S. It’s clearly improving, but hybrid is an easy sell.”

Smith also suggested that a plug-in hybrid Lexus isn't on the agenda, despite parent company Toyota dabbling in the technology.

“For PHEVs, the target is somebody who drives shorter distances and wants to maximize the electric range, and I don’t think that’s where luxury is."

In other words, Lexus customers use their cars on longer journeys, rather than the repeated shorter commutes of cars like the plug-in Prius--and without frequent recharging, the benefits would be slim.

Finally, a non-hybrid variant of the CT 200h is also unlikely, for the time being at least. Between that vehicle and smaller cars in the Scion and Toyota line-ups, Lexus simply doesn't need a smaller vehicle than the CT--though Smith says the company is watching the market carefully.

+++++++++++

Follow GreenCarReports on Facebook and Twitter.

Advertisement
 
Follow Us

 

Have an opinion?

  • Posting indicates you have read this site's Privacy Policy and Terms of Use
  • Notify me when there are more comments
Comments (3)
  1. "...but hybrid is an easy sell." There is something you don't hear every day.
     
    Post Reply
    Vote
    Bad stuff?

  2. well, if they are going to build a hybrid supercar, make the technology based on the TS030 Hybrid LMP1 racer, give it a V8, 515 HP, Aluminum chassis w/ carbon fiber parts, signature Lexus Styling, and make it track ready on command.
     
    Post Reply
    Vote
    Bad stuff?

  3. Personally I would want it as a plug-in hybrid, and then it would be a very attractive option for our personal road trip/distance car. A two door is too restrictive an option for our (read many practical people) as a first car, but for a couple's personal travel car.....

    And I do like the styling. We had, many years ago, the original Lexus Coupe (SC300 model), and I still think it was one of the most attractive cars ever. These days, we would ONLY consider PHEV format in any car for our garage.
     
    Post Reply
    Vote
    Bad stuff?

 

Have an opinion? Join the conversation!

Advertisement

Find Green Cars

Go!
Advertisement

Advertisement

 
© 2014 Green Car Reports. All Rights Reserved. Green Car Reports is published by High Gear Media. Send us feedback. Stock photography by izmo, Inc.