The FREE Complete Bay Area Auto Enthusiast Guide

Lexus aficionadas will recall our test-drive review of the 2018 LC500 equipped with a 5.0-liter cylinder engine. The Japanese carmaker followed that up recently with the same supercar but with a 3.5-liter V-6 powertrain mated to electric motor/generators, which put out a total of 354 horsepower @ 6000 rpm. Zero to 60 mph is clocked at just 4.7 seconds with top speed limited at 155 mph. The rear-wheel-drive speedster is fitted with a 310.8-volt lithium-ion battery, which is recharged by energy captured as the driver applies the brakes or coasts. Also, the Continuous Variable Transmission and 4-speed auto gearbox get a regenerative braking system. When the car is coasting or the brakes are applied, the electric power functions as a generator, capturing kinetic energy that would normally be lost. Instead, it converts the energy into useable electricity for recharging the batteries.
Up front, a mammoth mesh spindle grille is flanked by arrowhead LED daytime running lights with triple-projector LED headlights to indicate that this is indeed a speed demon. LEDs also deck up the rear, side signal, corner and tail lamps. Step into the well-appointed cabin and you will find an eye-catching shifter knob adorned in leather and satin-plated bezels while gas/brake pedals and footrests show off aluminum. Satin metallic finish touch is evident throughout. Niceties include 10-way power cooled/heated front seats, push-button start, analog clock, drive mode selector, power tilt/telescopic steering column, dual-zone a/c and a Lexus premium audio system. A mouse-like Remote Touch enables the driver to toggle navigation, climate, audio and phone controls, which are displayed on a 10.2-inch screen.
Dual front and side airbags, side curtain airbag, front knee airbags, vehicle stability and traction controls, three-point seatbelts for all, front/rear crumple zones and side-impact beams, rearview camera, four-wheel antilock brakes with electronic brake distribution and brake assist, daytime running lights and a tire pressure monitoring system are standard.
Like the power-at-all-times engine in the non-hybrid version, this LC500 is priced slightly higher but still peaking at over 100g. It does sip gas slower to eke out an impressive 26 mpg city and 35 mpg (regular LC is only 16 city/26 highway). This classy sports coupe is still an extraordinary ride, lunging gracefully forward with fervor at each turn, and braking just as quickly and with self-confidence.

Tires: 245/45R20 front; 275/40/R20 rear
Wheelbase: 113 inches
Length: 187.4 inches
Suspension: multilink
Steering: electric power
Weight: 4,435 pounds
Fuel capacity: 22.2 gallons
Base price: $96,500
Price as tested: $102,039
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