The Lexus RC-F will headline a new sports car model range that intends to offer genuine performance motoring to the masses, according to a report.
According to Motor Trend, the high performance Lexus coupe caught testing by CarAdvice’s spy photographers in July, is to be the new Lexus RC-F that will top the new RC range.
Designed to compete with the new BMW 4 Series, the RC (‘Racing Coupe’) will feature four powertrains. The range is said to start with a new 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine, and progress to 2.5-litre hybrid and a 3.5-litre V6 petrol.
While the last two engines are already found under the bonnet of the new IS producing 164kW and 300Nm, and 233kW and 378Nm respectively, both will be dwarfed by the flagship RC-F’s expected 5.0 litre V8 unit.
Teamed with a three-mode (Normal, Sport, Snow), eight-speed paddle-shifted automatic transmission related to the current IS-F‘s, the V8 will produce 340kW at 6800rpm and 544Nm at 5200rpm. Motivation should match efficiency too, with the Euro VI emission compliant engine to incorporate cylinder deactivation technology in a first for Toyota/Lexus.
The Lexus RC-F will also sport special carbonfibre body panels to bring the coupe’s weight down, as well as Sachs monotube shock absorbers and special-arm rear suspension. Helping haul the car to a stop will be six-piston front and four-piston rear Brembo brakes.
Inside will reportedly feature unique seats designed by Lexus and Recaro and share the IS sedan’s LFA-inspired dash.
Part of the reason for naming the car RC rather than IS is down to the coupe’s unique sheet metal, which should bear some resemblance to the LF-CC concept (pictured below) that debuted at last year’s Paris motor show.
The spied test mule also revealed a unique version of Lexus’ spindle grille, flared wheel arches, a rear spoiler, and stacked exhaust tips.
The camouflaged coupe’s bonnet scoop is said to have nothing to do with a forced-induction engine, instead serving to improve the model’s downforce by channelling air through the bonnet and down under the car.
Along with being a rival for BMW’s new two-door, the Lexus RC will be the Japanese carmaker’s challenger for the likes of the Audi A5 and Mercedes-Benz C-Class coupe, while the RC-F will take on the RS5, M4 and C63 AMG models.
The RC-F appears likely to debut at the 2014 Detroit auto show in January, with the rest of the RC range following in April at the New York motor show before all make it into US showrooms by September 2014.
While the report suggests the range will start at around US$40,000 ($43,922), increasing to US$100,000 ($109,661) for the RC-F, Lexus Australia’s Tyson Bowen told CarAdvice nothing official has been announced.
While confirming that the RC and RC-F nameplates have been trademarked by the brand, Bowen would not comment further on the cars potential saying only, “Speculation is healthy.”
Given the local IS range starts at $55,900 for the new IS250 and peaks at $126,300 for the previous-generation IS-F, you can expect the RC range to command higher prices if the car makes it to local shores.
Developments of the RC-F come after another future F-model, the M5-fighting GS-F, was spied last month.