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Lexus LC convertible goes legit

Road-going drop-top Lexus LC to hit showrooms, Australian introduction expected

8 Jul 2019

LEXUS has gone official with its LC convertible at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed, confirming production of its drop-top flagship that is expected to land Down Under at a date to be “announced later”.

While no details have yet to be announced on the new LC roadster, it is expected the convertible will share powertrain similarities with its coupe sibling, meaning a 5.0-litre petrol V8 or 3.5-litre petrol-electric hybrid V6 option.

For reference, the bent-eight LC500 belts out 351kW of power at 7100rpm and 540Nm of torque at 4800rpm, which, when driving the rear wheels via a 10-speed torque-converter automatic, will send the nearly-two-tonne coupe from zero to 100km/h in 4.7 seconds.

Meanwhile, the 220kW/348Nm 3.5-litre V6 and electric motor combine for a total system output of 264kW in the LC500h. Driving the rear wheels via a continuously variable transmission results in a 0-100km/h sprint time of 5.0s.

Though the LC convertible was shown in concept form earlier this year at the North American International Auto Show, a prototype of the drop-top was driven at the Goodwood Festival of Speed over the weekend by Japan GT series driver Nick Cassidy.

Clad in unique QR-coded camouflage, the LC convertible looks, expectedly, like the LC coupe without a roof.

Many design elements carryover from coupe to convertible, including sharp headlight and tail-lights, large exhaust outlets, arch-filling wheels and Lexus’ signature spindle front grille.

Lexus is remaining non-committal on the scheduling of the road-ready LC convertible but promises that “detailed specification and timings …. will be announced later”.

Lexus Australia chief executive Scott Thompson said the Japanese brand’s local division has put its hand in the air to secure allocation of the road-going LC convertible.

“We are very keen to secure this stunning new convertible for Australia now that production has been confirmed,” he said.

Sales of the Lexus LC have slowed 76.1 per cent this year, to just 11 units after six months of trading.

Both V8 and hybrid versions of the flagship coupe launched in mid-2017 for $190,000 plus on-road costs apiece.

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