Lexus Nerd

First Look At The Rc F In Australia

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A new Lexus RC F is currently travelling around Lexus showrooms across Australia - Brisbane last week, and Sydney showrooms this week. Earlier today, I was given the opportunity to check out a pre-production RC F at Sydney City Lexus. (The model shown was built in May. Final specifications for the Australian market may differ to the one shown.)

While there are already a lot of photos of the new RC F on the Internet, I wanted to show Lexus enthusiasts some parts of the vehicle in closer detail. I would also like to point out the standard features on the Australian model, so forum members can consider this when reading reviews of test drives carried out overseas (particularly the ones at the Monticello Motor Club, USA).

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The model shown is representative of the final RC F Carbon Edition, with carbon fibre bonnet, roof and spoiler. The standard top features a moonroof. In Australia, both are available with three different wheel variants. Interior seats are available either with alcantara trim (as shown) or semi-aniline leather.

Exterior

The prominent spindle grille is rather pointy, too, shunning the flat-nosed design found in many of today's cars. Five sides of the spindle are bordered by chrome trim, with the lower lip featuring a satin finish.

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The spoiler is partially raised here. Different modes are available; you probably know that the spoiler can be automatically raised at speeds above 80 km/h, but it can also remain lowered in ECO mode until the coupe reaches a higher speed.

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Michelin Pilot SuperSport tyres are fitted as standard: 255/35ZR19 at the front, and 275/35ZR19 at the rear. Even though they're rather wide tyres, they already come with that look where it appears stretched over the rims. Note the slotted discs and the rather low stance (for a stock vehicle) at the rear.

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The boot space is reasonable. Australian spec RC Fs will come with a tyre repair kit, although there is space for a space saver tyre if you ordered one (perhaps from overseas). As for rear headroom and legroom ... Well, I wouldn't seat anyone of any stature behind a six-foot driver, unless the driver moved the seat forward so that his or legs are noticeably bent. But would anyone buy one of these to carry around more than one passenger?

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Here's a picture of the lights, if you haven't already seen them on the Internet. Note the pop-up headlight washers, unlike the current model IS and new NX.

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Edited by Lexus Nerd

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Interior

The RC F's seats are strikingly different to anything else previously offered by Lexus, and they're super-comfortable, too; even more so than those in the latest IS. There are some subtle differences in the interior, too, compared to the IS. Note the different clock, the Remote Touch touchpad, the TVD button beneath the Drive Mode Select dial, the frameless rear view mirror ... oh, and cupholders designed to keep even a slimline energy drink in place. :-)

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The instrument panel matches the sportiness of the seats and the exterior. Note the EXPERT mode indicated on the tachometer; this is a mode which, according to Torque News, eluded almost all journalists at Monticello.

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Drivetrain

The engine cover on the 351 kW V8 is as aggressive as the exterior, making the engine look larger than the IS F's, when it actually isn't:

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Readers should be aware that the Torque Vectoring Differential comes standard in all Australian RC F specification levels. (TVD powers the outside rear wheel in a turn, the extent to which depends on whether NORMAL, SLALOM or TRACK mode is selected.) This isn't mentioned by Australian journalists who reviewed a pre-production RC F in the US in September. From my understanding after reading numerous reviews, only one Australian journalist actually drove an RC F with TVD fitted; the others were only offered an RC F with the Torsen LSD. Journos worldwide who drove the latter complained of handling issues, while those who had the TVD were mostly happy. (Some still complained that you couldn't turn off traction control, but they weren't made aware of the EXPERT mode that turned off traction control, reduced VSC, and modified ABS to improve launching.)

The first production models should hit Australian showrooms - either as demo models or sold models consigned to customers - in mid-December.

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Great write up and good photos as always. You'd make a good car journo.

Who else has seen the car???

Thoughts on IS-F & RC-F being in the same section?

Then including maybe GS-F when/if its out?

Maybe a section for F models. LFA/ISF/RCF at the moment???

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Great intro to the RCF. When I picked up my RC350 a few weeks ago, the dealer had a blue RCF upstairs just like this one, so I had a close look inside and out too.

Exterior looks benefit from reduced tyre/fender gaps compared to the RC350, and the unreal looking quad pipe setup. However, the side skirting is styled slightly differently. On the RC350, the skirting ends in an upward curve - on the RCF, the skirting ends in a strange downward curve, that doesn't look as good. Also, the standard wheels are not attractive - the optional wheels are needed (like the example in the photos looks to have).

Are you sure there is a clear choice of either alcantara or leather interior. The one I inspected had a combination of leather and alcantara, with the latter used on the the centre console and door armrests (over the 350) in a light grey colour - and overall didn't look as good as the interior colour matched leather finishing in the RC350 on the centre console. The Oz Lexus configurator doesn't seem to specify a clear choice for interior between the two materials - I may be wrong. And the red RCF seats are a brighter red than the dark rose colour available for the350 - which no doubt suits the extrovert nature of the RCF, but doesn't look as subtle and nice. And no LFA-inspired sliding tach??

60k approx extra OTR is a lot to pay for the V8 motor, performance diff, spoiler (and braking and suspension mods), over the 350 F sport enhancement pack 2. No doubt largely worth it for the extra grunt and aural sensation, though....

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Are you sure there is a clear choice of either alcantara or leather interior. The one I inspected had a combination of leather and alcantara, with the latter used on the the centre console and door armrests (over the 350) in a light grey colour - and overall didn't look as good as the interior colour matched leather finishing in the RC350 on the centre console. The Oz Lexus configurator doesn't seem to specify a clear choice for interior between the two materials - I may be wrong.

In all new Lexus vehicles, "leather interior" is more accurately described as "leather accented interior". For legal reasons, Lexus Australia's publications all use this term, while the rest of us continue to abbreviate.

Details of what is meant to be leather, and what isn't, is normally found here. Lexus Australia haven't provided the details for the RC yet, and RC F's should be there when becomes generally available next month. In the absence of the relevant drawings, I would say that, in the RC, synthetic material is used for the seat backs and sides, as well as the outer facings of the F Sport seat bolsters. Synthetic material is also used on the dashboard, centre console and door lining, while leather is used for the steering wheel and remainder of the seat. Rather than combine leather with synthetics with a faux leather finish, I guess Lexus has made a clear distinction between alcantara and leather in the RC F (where leather is fitted; i.e., the non-carbon edition).

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