A case in point regard the sheer number of variants of each manufacturer on the road – Growing up you had an Audi 80 or if you had a little more money you had an Audi 100. Today you can have an A1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 or 8, Now take all of these models and add eaither, S-line, Black edition, Black edition+, S on an RS and you’ll have the same car with different trim/HP/Styling. The list at Audi goes on, TT, TTS, TTRS, Q3, Q5, Q7, R8 and if we read correctly Audi plan to release 7 brand new letters to the Alphabet in 2016 allowing them to build many new cars that will all look the same with a surfboard on the roof but run off the national grid via your hoover socket causing many petrol stations to close and as a result 500ml bottles of diet coke and packets of chewing gum will find their way on to the endangered species list.
This brings me not very neatly at all to the stand alone Lexus RC F. Today this car on paper stats alone, in my opinion competes with several Audi RS badged cars, BMW M4 & M5 and Mercedes AMG of various guises. The list goes on but when speaking about the luxury end of the 450bhp+ club the 3 Germans and their Japanese nemeses take a corner each. The rest is American or tacky and usually both so best left to the Americans.
The Lexus on looks alone wins. This car wasn’t built initially as a 2.0 TDI middle management bus like each and every one of its rivals. It was built as the RC F 5.0 V8. There is no commuter version for the masses and because of this there is something very rare and beautiful about this car beyond its striking looks. This car was designed for drivers not surfers. The 471 bhp and 0-60 time of just under 4.5 seconds is in a few words, bloody good fun. There are those of course who say it feels a little slower than those figures suggest and its hefty weight of 1.765KG might have something to do with that, but in my opinion the car feels mature, sturdy and unlike a certain 2.0 CDI coupe I recently drove it didn’t want to destroy £500 of rubber every time it went above 3mph. The whole car feels like one unit and you as a driver become part of that. We did a lot of motorway driving and it made for a fantastic cruiser. Naturally on a car like this the suspension was a little obvious but nothing to complain about. Around town it was like any GT/Sports car but had the turning circle of a squirrel which was a nice surprise given the cul-de-sac we took on that I battle to do in one attempt most days in a BMW.
The cabin was at first glance a little strange as it looks like nothing else on the market but as you get to grips with the layout and the fantastic touch pad that controls pretty much everything, you start to feel connected. It’s a joy to be in.
Overall if you want to spend this sort of money on a car you really should look at the Lexus as a serious alternative the Germans. It looks like nothing else, drives superbly and you won’t see 40 variants of it every time you go for a pint of milk. In a world that’s full of replication and automotive plagiarism buy yourself an original painting not a 1 of 250 print.
The Lexus featured is available from Charles Hurst Lexus Belfast.
Currently priced at £53,990 Was £64,120
Car tested is wrapped in matt yellow. Original colour is white.
Visit www.charleshurstgroup.co.uk/lexus/ or phone 028 9517 0302