2020 Lexus RC F Review By Larry Nutson
2020 Lexus RC F
By Larry Nutson
Executive Editor and Bureau Chief
The Auto Channel
Cars, those 2-door coupes, convertibles and 4-door sedans, comprise about 25 to 28 percent of U.S. new vehicle sales. They will most likely continue as such, although auto makers are dropping some 2-door models from their lineup.
Coupes are not the most practical body style but they do make a very noticeable personal statement. With the often-compromised rear seat space and limited cargo room of a 2-door coupe more and more drivers are choosing a 4-door sedan that offers the same or similar high level of distinction and performance.
However, coupes are about fun. They typically provide a high level of driving enjoyment and many drivers are willing to accept some tradeoffs to have that.
The most fun and highest performer from Lexus is the RC F. Dress the RC F in a bold color and it will turn heads. Push the throttle to the floor and the naturally aspirated 5.0-L V8 will make its presence known with plenty of roar from the quad exhaust pipes.
Lexus refreshed the RC F for 2020 with design updates and improved performance. Recently I went about my weekly business driving a Flare Yellow example of the new RC F.
Under the skin various reductions in component weight allowed for some new suspension tuning with corresponding handling improvements. Refinements to the 5.0-L V8 bumped output to 472-horsepower. The 8-speed automatic now connects to a shorter 3.13 rear end gear, revised from the previous 2.97 to improve low-end response. The RC F now has electronic launch control that delivers an estimated 0-to-60 mph time of just 4.2 seconds.
Outside there’s larger air intakes up front, a revised grille, new rocker panel design, new optional triple-beam LED headlights, and new LED taillights.
For the hardcore enthusiast, a new limited production RC F Track Edition is now available for 2020. With 176 lbs. of less weight compared to the RC F and front and rear aerodynamic body refinements, the Track Edition is designed for max performance.
Pricing for the 2020 RC F starts at $64,750 plus the $1,025 destination charge. The 2020 RC F Track Edition starts at $96,650 not including destination.
My Flare Yellow RC F test car was loaded up which gave it a $89,504 bottom line. The new triple-beam LED headlights cost $1,160. Navigation and 17-speaker Mark Levinson audio added $2,725. A $11,400 Performance Package includes weight saving carbon-fiber interior trim bits, roof panel, front spoiler, rocker-panel splitters, rear diffuser, and activate rear wing. The $5350 Premium Package gets you heated and ventilated front seats with driver-seat memory, heated steering wheel, blind-spot monitor and rear-cross-path alert, auto-dimming mirror, power tilt/telescopic steering wheel, and rear-seat center console with cupholders.
Lexus RC F is designed and built with the expectation that it will be track driven. While at the same time, the RC F will also provide comfortable, luxurious, and very fast personal transportation.
That said, I didn’t get to do any track driving this time around. Covid-19 pandemic has caused lots of restrictions in the auto world. I did, however, have fun on the street and enjoyed all the comforts of the RC F. With its low to the ground profile and seating, getting in and out calls for some dexterity. Once in, seating is comfortable and supportive.
The long doors can be a challenge in a tight parking space. Overall outward visibility is good and maneuvering is made easy with the aid of the rear view camera. The HVAC keeps you comfortable and the audio delivers great sounding tunes. The Lexus multimedia touchpad is “touchy.” The staggered size 35-series performance tires are not too firm but do require that you keep a sharp eye for road hazards. Drive modes can be changed with the console mounted dial. Sport and Sport+ enhance engine and transmission mapping for increased performance.
More RC F information can be found at www.lexus.com.
The RC F is a nicely comfortable personal transport. It could be a daily driver from home to office depending on where you live. Out in the wide open spaces you control loads of fun and performance with your two hands and right foot. In snow belt states I might leave it parked all winter.
© 2020 Larry Nutson, the Chicago Car Guy