For the past few years, the Lexus LFA has served as an exciting range-topper in the brand’s sales portfolio. Now that the supercar is officially in the history books, it’s time for Lexus to work on an LFA replacement as well as a few things it can do to improve the brand as a whole.
Automotive News recently interviewed Lexus Executive Vice President Kazuo Ohara who said “if we want to build a more emotional brand, then we need a halo car. We would like to have that sort of car.” The LFA, which served as a catalyst for Lexus to build more exciting products, showcased Toyota’s engineering might. In addition to its carbon fiber monocoque, the LFA featured a high-revving 4.8-liter V-10 that produced 552-hp and 354 lb-ft of torque and wailed to a redline of 9000 rpm. Only 500 were produced at a price tag north of $350,000.
And according to Automotive News¸ the brand’s next halo car won’t be as extreme (or expensive) as the LFA. Lexus hasn’t officially announced what’s coming next, but recent rumors and concepts cars have provided plenty of speculation material. For starters, Lexus has received mostly positive feedback from its stunning LF-LC concept car, which has been making an appearance at auto shows for the past year. Additionally, parent company Toyota still plans to build a Supra successor, which means Lexus could possibly build its own version based on that.
Lexus has also outlined its “4-point plan” to continue the brand’s image revamp and lure in younger buyers:
• More impassioned design
• New drivetrains
• Better customer service
• Sexier marketing
The new GS sedan, the aforementioned LF-LC, and the recently unveiled LF-CC concept provide a few clues of what to expect in upcoming Lexus designs. Next, Lexus plans to introduce a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine by 2014; The brand’s German competitors already offer smaller displacement turbo engines in the U.S.
What should Lexus build for its next halo car? A 2+2 sports hybrid coupe based on the LF-LC concept or a mid-engined hybrid based on the next Toyota Supra? Sound off in the comments below.
Source: Automotive News (subscriptions required)