Driven: Lexus RC F Carbon Review

Driven:  Lexus RC F Carbon Review

Here is the first drive review of the Lexus RCF Carbon after Motor Verso were given the opportunity to test out the car on a range of test roads at Millbrook Proving Ground.

What is the Lexus RC F Carbon all about?

The Lexus RC F is the latest performance car from Lexus that has muscle car looks and leading edge motor sport technology.

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The RC F Carbon has outstanding road presence. The front of the car has a huge angular grille that looks like it is ready to swallow up the road in front of it. The “Carbon” in the name relates to the fact that the bonnet, roof and boot have all been replaced with carbon fibre making the car lighter and giving the RC F the ultimate aggressive look.

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The RC F is powered by a 5.0-litre V8 engine that creates 471bhp and 530Nm of torque. The power goes through an eight-speed automatic gearbox and through to the rear wheels. This means that the car will get from 0-60mph in 4.5 seconds and does a top speed of 168mph. The RC F sounds brilliant on paper.

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How does it drive?

Turning on the RC F for the first time the 5.0-litre sounds like an absolute beast. The naturally aspired 5.0-litre engine shakes the car on ignition; and sounds like a race car without even moving.

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Getting on the road for the first time the RC F has a huge playful element that makes the car a real thrill to drive. I remember deploying full throttle for the first time; I was forced back into my seat, and then as I worked the RC F up through the rev range the sound was just amazing.

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I took the car around the high speed test bowl at Millbrook Proving Ground, giving me the chance to experience the full force acceleration of the car, and more than once too.  Once up to speed I had the chance to test the car out at 100mph, at high speed the car was very smooth and actually quite refined.

In the bends the RC F is equally as impressive, although the car is relatively heavy it still manages to turn in well and carry lots of speed through most of the corner.

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The RC F also offers a selection of different driving modes Normal, Sport, Expert and then with everything off. Changing the settings adjusts the traction and stability control systems, along with three modes for an optional torque vectoring device that alters how the engine’s power is deployed at the rear wheels. It does all sound pretty technical, but it’s pretty simple to use really.

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What is it like inside?

Inside the Lexus RC F the interior is pretty busy with lots of buttons, knobs, switches and control pads. Straight away you are aware that you are in a highly technical and futuristic car. One of the really odd points about the RC F is that the handbrake is pedal operated; above your left foot there is a small pedal that you press to apply and release the brake, not many cars have this approach but it works pretty well.

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Take one look at the driver’s instruments and you see a range of fully digital instruments telling you all kinds of information about the car. The first time I looked at them it blew my mind a little, they give a bit of a fighter pilot feel to the car which is only good thing, right?

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The Experience

The Lexus RC F is pretty rare, especially in the UK. The car has outstanding road presence in the Carbon edition and is certainly a bit of a head turner. But it more than just looks good, the car feels like a brutal muscle car, the straight line performance is impressive and the sound that comes from the Lexus will melt any petrol heads heart.

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Sure, the Lexus RC F Carbon isn’t the cheapest model in the sector, or the fastest, but it is without a doubt one of the most unique cars in both looks and driving experience.

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Video Highlights


 Lexus RC F Carbon

  • Price: £67,995
  • Engine: 5.0-litre V8
  • Power: 471bhp
  • Torque: 530Nm
  • Transmission: 8-Speed Automatic RWD
  • 0-62mph: 4.5 Seconds
  • Top speed: 168mph
  • Weight: 1,765kg
  • Economy: 26mpg
  • CO2: 252g/km

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Author: Paul Hadley