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Limited Lexus LFA lights up the ‘Ring

New video confirms Lexus is the new king of the Nurburgring with its limited LFA

Lexus logo8 Sep 2011

LEXUS has released a video confirming recent reports that its upcoming LFA Nurburgring Edition has recorded the fastest ever time for a road-registered production car at Germany's famed Nürburgring Nordschleife.

The lighter, more powerful limited-edition LFA’s time of 7:14.64 betters by almost four seconds the time of Porsche’s current production car record holder at the 20.8km 154-turn road circuit, the $560,000 911 GT2 RS (7:18).

The staggeringly quick lap time is also about 10 seconds quicker than Nissan’s giant-killing GT-R (7:24) and betters automotive exotica like the Dodge Viper ACR, Maserati MC12 and Pagani Zonda F, eclipsed only by purpose-built specials like the Gumpert Apollo and Radical SR8.

It was set by Japanese racer and LFA test driver Akira Iida in the same standard LFA Nurburgring Edition LFA sampled by selected media at the iconic German racetrack last week, fitted only with a fresh set of the same Bridgestone Potenza RE070 tyres that grace the street-legal LFA.

As we’ve reported, the Nurburgring-badged model is a limited-edition version of Lexus’ already limited LFA supercar, just 50 of which will be produced next year from a total global LFA production run of 500 vehicles, at the rate of 20 per month over 25 months.

None of Australia’s 10 well-heeled buyers of the LFA, which costs $750,000 here, have ordered a Nurburgring model, which was first revealed at the Geneva motor show in March and comes with a host of mechanical enhancements to make it more track-focussed.

31 center imageThey include a 100kg reduction in kerb weight, from 1580 to 1480kg, and a more effective carbonfibre-reinforced plastic aero package comprising a large fixed rear wing, lower front lip, front winglets and canard fins, resulting in an aerodynamic drag coefficient of 0.31Cd.

Peak power of the standard LFA’s 412kW 4.8-litre V10 has been boosted by 8kW to 420kW to maintain acceleration and top speed (which remain unchanged at 3.7 second to 100km/h and a maximum velocity of 325km/h), in spite of the extra downforce.

Priced about $70,000 higher than the garden-variety LFA in the US, the Nurburgring package also includes a reduction in gearshift times from 0.2 to 0.15 seconds and a unique track-focussed suspension tune with 10mm-lower ride height.

There are also unique 20-spoke, 20-inch forged aluminium alloy wheels wrapped in 265/35 ZR20 front and 305/30 ZR20s rear tyres and, thankfully, LFA Nurburgring Edition buyers will also be eligible for one-on-one instruction at the iconic Nordishleiffe circuit, for which they will also receive a one-year entry pass.

Inside the unique LFA gains specific Recaro bucket seats with manual adjustment and Alcantara cladding, while the dashboard is trimmed in Alcantara and carbon-fibre, and the doors score full carbon-fibre skins.

Four exterior colours are being offered - orange, white, black and matt black – along with two interior colour schemes.

“Since 2004 in the spring and summer of every year we have conducted development tests for the LFA at Nürburgring Nordschleife,” said LFA chief engineer, Haruhiko Tanahashi.

“The LFA Nürburgring package is the compilation of our extensive testing program and we have appreciated the opportunities to utilise the Nürburgring Nordschleife to strengthen and develop the LFA into the vehicle it is today.

“The development team's obsession, Iida-san's concentration and good course conditions all led to achieving this record,” he said.

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