Lexus LC 500 grills up for sizzling NAIAS debut

That Japanese automaker Lexus is lusting after the mid-level luxury market segment dominated by BMW and Mercedes is not exactly an open secret.

As The Verge believes, the new Lexus LC 500 Concept is positioned to get into the mix with the likes of Mercedes SL and BMW 6 Series when Lexus pushes it to the market as a 2017 production model available at dealerships next year.

The grill is definitely the most pronounced feature of the sports coupe, which shares its breezy aerodynamic construction with the previously released LF-LC concept premiered at NAIAS, per The Verge.

So, as far as what’s under the hood of this “500” – let’s not get the Mercedes numerology get all Arabic on us, okay? – it goes like this: V-8 delivering 467 horsepower and 389 pound-feet of torque, which means the driver can pony up to 0-60 mph in about 4.5 seconds, give it or take the wind factor on the environment it’s in.

The 10-speed automatic transmission and weight distribution in this car is what we are excited about, since like the RC-F, it’s lighter materials used in construction will translate to lower MPG, among other benefits. That will be a critical difference, of course, when Lexus is competing against the German juggernauts who have natural competitive leverage in the factories and in the marketplace.

According to Road and Track, Lexus plans to release the LC 500 coupe “next year” and the LS sport sedan “based on the same platform will follow.”

While we can’t wait to see how the LC 500 fares, we can’t wait to check back in with Lexus this time next year and see how the Lexus RC-F sales tally up in the North America market (since The Car Fanatics blog is based on the west coast, even regional figures will do). Okay, no more ninja jokes.

Photo Credit: Lexus

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