2020 Lexus RC F review: Power and presence, but still a step behind

I adore the Infrared paint on this take a look at car. Emme Hall/Roadshow The luxury efficiency coupe phase is dominated by heavy-hitters this kind of as the Audi RS5, BMW M4 and Mercedes-AMG C63. But Lexus has been taking part in in this area, too. The sharp-on the lookout […]

I adore the Infrared paint on this take a look at car.

Emme Hall/Roadshow

The luxury efficiency coupe phase is dominated by heavy-hitters this kind of as the Audi RS5, BMW M4 and Mercedes-AMG C63. But Lexus has been taking part in in this area, too. The sharp-on the lookout RC F launched in 2015 — a coupe-bodied successor to the outrageous IS F that arrived before it — and it will get a several meaningful updates for the 2020 model yr that make it even extra appealing than before.


  • Warm damn this factor appears to be great
  • V8 motor delivers a great rumble to the cabin

You should not Like

  • Enform infotainment process requires a important overhaul
  • Transmission could be snappier

What’s new

There is no denying the RC F is a handsome car, specially decked out in the Infrared colour of my tester. But for 2020, the huge coupe will get a several compact styling tweaks. The neat-on the lookout stacked tailpipes are however right here, but they’re established off by new taillights and a redesigned bumper. Up entrance, you can recognize much larger air intakes and restyled headlights. The substantial spindle grille is as notable right here as it’s at any time been, even though it’s really a bit lesser for 2020.

The RC F will get a several engineering tweaks, too, reducing 56 kilos from the coupe’s excess weight thanks to lighter factors in the manifold and air conditioning process, as very well as a bumper aid piece produced from a blend of carbon fiber and aluminum.

And whaddaya know, the motor will get a several little adjustments, as very well. The 5.-liter obviously aspirated V8 now generates 472 horsepower at 7,100 rpm and 395 pound-toes of torque at 4,800 rpm — gains of 5 hp and 6 lb-ft. Which is not definitely more than enough to go the needle in any meaningful way, but hey, extra electrical power is extra electrical power. Electrical power will get down to the rear wheels by an 8-speed automated transmission. Gasoline financial state is as dismal as at any time, even though, with the 2020 RC F earning EPA ratings of 16 miles for each gallon city, 24 mpg highway and 19 mpg put together.

The RC F will get extra linear throttle mapping for 2020, as very well as a shorter closing-push ratio of 3.thirteen:1. Start handle is also aspect of the package deal now, and Lexus suggests it’ll support propel the RC F to 60 mph in a pretty-darn-quick 4.2 seconds.

On the road

As I make my way to my favourite twisty backroad, I switch the push method to Sport S to make use of its quicker throttle reaction, but I retain the torque-vectoring differential in its common location. The gearbox largely is familiar with what it’s accomplishing, even though at times I am going to get an early upshift or it will not downshift less than braking. Fortunately, that’s effortlessly remedied by utilizing the paddler shifters, and I even get a little throttle blip when I downshift — a good way to hear that V8 roar within the cabin.

Transferring to the Sport S Moreover location gives me maximum powertrain reaction and heavier steering come to feel. The TVD tech has Slalom and Monitor modes, the former of which can help the RC F come to feel a bit extra spry on these restricted backroads. You should not be fooled by the aforementioned excess weight loss — the 2020 RC F however strategies the scales at 3,902 kilos. The onboard electronics do a great work of creating the coupe come to feel a bit extra svelte, if you can pardon that use of an adjective as an adverb. In Slalom method, the RC F rotates greater by turns, and I find myself pushing it tougher as I careen by the corners.

The RC F rides on a staggered established of Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires, with 255/35-collection entrance and 275/35-collection rear rubber, wrapped around 19-inch wheels. These tires present loads of grip, and Michelin labored with Lexus to precisely acquire these tires for the RC F. It operates, too — at no stage does the rear close want to stage out less than difficult cornering, and I’ve received tons of grip at all periods.

The 5.-liter V8 puts out 472 horsepower and 395 pound-toes of torque.

Emme Hall/Roadshow

When it’s time to just commute, the Lexus happily settles down. Putting all the configurations back again to Typical reveals a car that’s however organization, but not uncomfortably so. Fortunately, the entrance seats present a good deal of aid for long excursions, as very well as the proper amount of cushiness for my hindquarters.

The common adaptive cruise handle operates as marketed, but its operation is a little wonky. I have to have interaction the process from a stalk on the reduce remaining facet of the steering column, but the length handle is on the steering wheel alone. In point, there are a lot of format challenges with the inside, but I am going to get to that in a moment. The RC F’s other common driver-support characteristics include things like lane-departure warning and lane-keeping aid, as very well as ahead-collision warning with pedestrian detection. Blind-location checking and rear cross-targeted traffic warn are the two package deal-primarily based alternatives.

Troublesome tech

I simply cannot converse about the RC F with no shaming the Lexus Enform infotainment process. It is bad. Really bad. My tester has the optional ten.3-inch multimedia screen, which is a great enhance more than the common 7-inch device. Enform is controlled by a touchpad that is meant to be analogous to a smartphone, where I can tap, swipe and pinch-to-zoom to my heart’s information. In fact, however, this is just horrible to use. It is unbelievably quick to swipe previous icons, even just after modifying the parameters of the touchpad. There are difficult buttons for the map, principal menu and to stage back again 1 screen, but every little thing else will have to be picked by the touchpad, which is infuriating to use even though driving.

More, in purchase to entry apps like I Coronary heart Radio, Yelp, Amazon Alexa and Waze, drivers will have to have the Lexus Enform Application Suite 2. set up on their telephone. You can get around this utilizing Apple CarPlay, but Android Car is absent (even even though you can get it on the non-F RC coupe).

The cabin is comfy, but the infotainment tech is infuriating.

Emme Hall/Roadshow

Even though the inside of the RC F is entire of gentle-contact, excellent resources, it suffers in conditions of format and user expertise. In addition to the aforementioned adaptive cruise handle stalk/steering wheel snafu, a button on the proper-hand facet of the steering wheel controls a digital facts pane on the remaining-hand facet of the gauge cluster. The change alerts and windshield wiper stalks the two return to location automatically and it’s rough to get just a several blinker clicks for, say, a lane change, or 1 wiper swipe to get care of a little rain mist. Oh, and why does a car so packed with tech however have a foot pedal parking brake?

I don’t anticipate a sports coupe to have much in the way of utility, but the Lexus falls short right here by comparison. There is restricted in-cabin storage and the truck only delivers ten.1 cubic toes of area, which is lesser than what you get in the Audi RS5, BMW M4 and Mercedes-AMG C63. The rear seats don’t fold down but there is a go-by to accommodate longer items, for when you want to get your rear-wheel-push sports car skiing.

How I’d spec it

I adore the way this car appears to be, so my excellent RC F would be painted Infrared, which expenditures $595. I’d insert the quality package deal ($5,350) which will get me heated and cooled seats, a heated steering wheel, blind-location checking, rear cross-targeted traffic warn and the rear seat go-by. At last, I am going to insert the $1,250 torque-vectoring differential, bringing my fantastic RC F up to $73,a hundred and twenty out the door.

Lexus also delivers a $6,000 efficiency package deal which tacks on a bunch of carbon fiber pieces, which I don’t definitely want. Embedded navigation expenditures $2,725, which I am going to also skip taking into consideration Apple CarPlay is free. If you definitely want to go huge, there is certainly also the $ninety seven,825 RC F Monitor Version, but that’s a total distinctive animal.

The RC F is a enjoyment car, but it just are not able to retain up with the level of competition.

Emme Hall/Roadshow

Good appears to be usually are not more than enough

At $65,925 to get started, like place, the RC F is more affordable than its important rivals, but not by much. The Audi RS5 arrives in at $seventy five,195, the BMW M4 starts off at $70,145 and the Mercedes-AMG C63 expenditures $70,895, all like their respective place charges. For a several thousand bucks extra you get nicer interiors, extra keen powertrains and much greater cabin tech.

The 2020 Lexus RC F is a great preference for people who favor day by day-driving convenience more than entire-blast, knock-your-socks-off shenanigans. But with intense competitors that do so numerous matters greater, it however winds up becoming a back again-of-the-pack select in this remarkable phase, even if it does change heads.

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