Lexus RC-F 10th Anniversary review New Zealand
To celebrate a decade of their luxurious sport division ‘F Performance’, Lexus has released special 10th Anniversary versions of the GS and RC. Both come in matte finish Nebula Grey coats, both have striking blue leather interiors and both have a 5L, V8 Quad Cam, 32 valve heart, however, I only managed to get the keys to one – the RC-F coupe, I wasn’t complaining, believe me.
Launched a decade ago, factory produced F-Sport performance models feature interior and exterior upgrades both visually and mechanically. Working closely with Toyota’s Racing Division (TR), they elevate hand-picked Lexus models to sportscar status. Now traditionally, a 10th wedding anniversary gift would be made from tin or aluminium, so the stand-out Nebula Grey colour is quite fitting, but the icing on this cake is that it’s also got a texture that you can’t help but touch – thankfully it’s also easy to clean.
The RC-F’s coupe styling is always a bit of a winner in my book. Sure, it’s a little more challenging for adults to fold themselves into the rear ‘seats’, but the shape and style are both seductive and easy on the eye with more than a hint of brute about it. This F10 model comes with Carbon Fibre roof and retractable boot spoiler, a sports bumper with mesh spindle grille, LED 3-lens headlights, quad pipes at the rear and 19-inch gloss black alloys complete with blue Brembo brake callipers.
Peer through the acoustic glass and you’re greeted by a sea of blue. Leather sports seats (with white accents), semi-aniline leather wheel, leather gear knob with contrast white stitching, carbon fibre trim with a woven blue inlay and a blue Alcantara instrument cluster hood – it certainly makes a bold statement.
Despite the added sportiness, you can rest assured that the decadent Lexus luxury still forms the RC-F’s backbone. A 12.3-inch high-resolution display screen takes up pole position in the dashboard and controls everything from the Lexus Navigation to the 835w Mark Levison sound system. The large TFT instrumentation display offers a raft of necessary driver information while Lexus’s seemingly endless amount of driver’s aid work quietly away in the background ensuring that you control this hefty coupe like a pro.
Under the bulging bonnet remains the gruff sounding naturally aspirated 5L V8 engine that produces 351kW and 530Nm and this, in turn, sends power to the rear wheels via a torque vectoring differential and an 8-Speed auto box (with paddles should you so be inclined).
Having been behind the wheel of an RC-F before, I am aware of its capabilities and that epic V8 sound that shakes the entire vehicle. To a large degree (and thanks to being driven around a track by a Lexus pro driver) I’m aware of its handling and overall speed but I have to say that I wasn’t expecting just how special I would feel in this anniversary model. As always, it’s the little things that make a difference, the anniversary badge on the door panel, the embossed headliner, even those blue brake callipers, they combined to make my back straighten just a little more and had me holding my head a little bit higher.
Happy anniversary Lexus F-Sport, you may only be a decade old but what a decade it’s been.