A portly curb weight that’s as heavy as some well-equipped off-roaders holds the 2020 Lexus LC back when it comes to performance, even though the car’s chassis boasts a ride that borders on perfection.
We rate the 2020 LC at 8 out of 10, tossing the competent handler points for its acceleration, its ride quality, and its impressive corner carving. If Lexus shaved 800 pounds, the 2020 LC would score even higher.
The LC comes in two underhood flavors: LC 500 with a Detroit-grade 5.0-liter V-8 rated at 471 horsepower and 398 pound-feet of torque sent rearward through a slick 10-speed automatic transmission; the LC 500h hybrid is motivated by a 3.5-liter V-6 teamed with an electric motor and a battery good for 354 hp. Specs quoted are with 91 octane fuel or higher.
The conventional V-8 provides the best thrust, and a soundtrack that’s among the best in the business. Its 10-speed automatic behaves well, though occasionally it can feel like it’s dealing with one or two cogs too many as it shuffles between gears for highway passing.
Stick with the LC 500h if you work for an eco-friendly firm and need to park a hybrid in the lot. The 44-kW lithium-ion battery adds poundage, though the trick 4-speed automatic transmission tied to a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) behaves sharply to deliver terrific acceleration. Drive modes accessible at the tap of a button enliven or soften the powertrain, and a custom mode allows for individual tailoring. Stab the throttle and either powertrain vaults the big coupe to 60 mph in 4.4 seconds (4.7 seconds for the 500h), with the LC 500 generally providing stronger passing power.
The big coupe possesses some of the best steering to come out of parent company Toyota’s stable in years, bettering even the new Supra. Wide tires provide immense, unflappable grip once the LC transitions its heft. The big brakes make it a suitable track-tamer, too, though we doubt many will hit closed courses.
Underneath, the LC’s gentle suspension swallows rough pavement better than even the softly sprung LS sedan with which it shares considerable DNA.
The optional Performance Package tweaks the steering ratio, adds active rear-wheel steering, a rear wing that deploys at speed and a carbon fiber roof. We’re fine with the standard car, though we’d be inclined to add the $350 Torsen limited-slip rear differential.
There’s no LC F version, and we’re not sure there needs to be one.
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