August 17, 2015
We never quite came to a consensus on whether or not we liked our long-term 2015 Lexus RC F. We certainly liked its 5.0-liter V8. Despite its unapologetic sport-coupe profile, we liked that it offered decent cargo space. We also enjoyed the power and crisp definition of its very nice audio system.
July 9, 2015
If you obsessively look at ads for old cars like I do, you'll know that the driver seat's outside bolster is a common wear point for leather upholstery.
What's not common is for a one-year-old bolster to have a hole in its hide. But that's what our 2015 Lexus RC F is dealing with as it prepares to leave the fleet.
July 7, 2015
Many cars today come with gauges that encourage you to drive in a fuel-conscious manner. The dash on the Nissan Leaf grows trees, while our long-term BMW i3 gives you a letter grade. But our 2015 Lexus RC F has something different, something we're seeing in more new sports cars: A fun meter.
Or at least that's what I call it. "It" is a display that logs peak lateral and longitudinal g-forces. See that little yellow circle? When you accelerate, it moves back. When you brake, it goes forward. When you turn left and right, it does the same. The harder you do these things, the more that yellow circle moves.
June 26, 2015
Our long-term 2015 Lexus RC F has a pretty small trunk at just 10.1 cubic feet. And as Scott pointed out, the non-foldable, fixed rear seats in the F model limits your ability to carry larger items. Nevertheless, there's enough space in this trunk to accommodate my daily needs.
June 23, 2015
My colleague Brent Romans has already successfully installed a front-facing car seat in our long-term 2015 Lexus RC F, so I was a little overconfident when I signed out our coupe for the weekend. I assumed I'd be able to install a rear-facing car seat, even though my child has an extra-large seat.
Well, I was able to fit the car seat. Barely. The hardest part was getting the front passenger seat locked back down into place after engaging the easy-entry feature to wedge the car seat into the rear seat.
June 15, 2015
May was another low-key month for our long-term 2015 Lexus RC F. We added 1,190 miles while we debated its ride quality (Brent doesn't mind, Ed says it's the tires), analyzed its manual shift mode, discovered an interior rattle, praised its audio quality and grumbled about its technology interface.
We also didn't do much better in our monthly fuel economy.
June 11, 2015
I capped the vacuum line that controls the intake sound of the intake on our 2015 Lexus RC F, like I said I would. It took less than a minute and cost $0.40.
This change (I'm hesitant to call it a modification) falls under the "I can't believe it's not like this from the factory" variety because of its simplicity and its improvement. In fact, documenting the change took longer than the process itself.
But enough people asked about it online, so I wanted to give a longer explanation. With video!
June 9, 2015
We needed to pick up a new long-term car at a dealership in San Diego, so I grabbed the keys to the 2015 Lexus RC F and headed south. My 89-year-old father came along for the ride and he was quite outspoken about the car's interior. Keep in mind that one of his first cars was a '34 Ford Coupe. I expected him to be overwhelmed by the gadgetry, but that wasn't the first thing he commented on.
June 4, 2015
One good thing about our long-term 2015 Lexus RC F? It gets loud.
Under heavy throttle load and around 3,600 rpm, the RC F's 5.0-liter V8 goes from its soft-spoken idle to a booming roar. This change is controlled by a vacuum-actuated flap on the passenger side of the airbox. Vacuum holds the flap shut until you cross that throttle load/engine speed threshold. When you do, the flap opens and broadcasts that wonderful intake sound all around the car. When the engine's off, you can move the flap with your fingers. This gave me an idea.
June 1, 2015
Yesterday I learned that the V6-powered Lexus RC 350 and RC 350 F Sport come standard with a 60/40 split-folding rear seat. It makes the trunk of such a sport coupe far more useful.
I also learned that our long-term, V8-powered 2015 Lexus RC F doesn't. Instead, Lexus gives RC F owners only a small pass-through for skis and other long, narrow objects.
May 22, 2015
Don't worry, I don't intend to beat a dead horse regarding our 2015 Lexus RC F In fact, I think it rides just fine. But as James said in his last post, the tires can sound pretty angry when you're on a concrete freeway. Sure enough, we have plenty of those here in Southern California. And when you're humming along at highway speeds, radio off to better hear the smooth hum of that big V8, the road noise from the tires nearly overpowers all 467 horses.
It's especially noticeable since there are sections of highway that I drive that switch between concrete and asphalt. It's like pushing a button that says "road noise" when you switch between them.
Of course, there's a reason why the tires are so loud.
May 20, 2015
Our long-term RC F is quiet inside. The absence of road and wind noise allows the burly V8 and powerful surround-sound audio system to shine. Unfortunately, it also spotlights a flaw.
May 19, 2015
Say what you will about the Lexus RC F, but it's hard to argue that it doesn't make great noises. No, I'm not talking about the big V8's burble and howl. This time I'm referring to the 17-speaker Mark Levinson premium audio upgrade which, bundled with navigation, adds $2,840 to the price.
May 18, 2015
The alternate title for this update could have been: "Why James and Dan are Wrong." James commented about our 2015 Lexus RC F's stiff ride quality in his Arizona Trip update while Dan's rough ride offsets luxury experience made him initially grumpy. Sheesh, you'd think these guys were ready for AARP memberships.
May 14, 2015
We've had a couple updates so far about the technology interface in our 2015 Lexus RC F. Early on, Ed contended that the latest Remote Touch touchpad system in our car was an improvement over earlier Lexus systems such as in our long-term GS and IS. Then about six weeks ago, James drove our RC F to Arizona and found Remote Touch to be "terrible."
I drove our RC F and used the system for more than a week. Here's my take.
May 12, 2015
For everyday driving, the eight-speed automatic transmission in our 2015 Lexus RC F is just what I'd hope for in a modern auto. It upshifts smoothly as the RC F's speed increases and quickly drops down a couple of gears when you gently press on the gas for maneuvering through typical city traffic. The Sport S and Sport S+ drive modes further liven up the shift points and responsiveness.
You can also slot the gear lever to the left for manual shifting, pushing it forward for upshifts, pulling back for downshifts, or use the steering wheel-mounted shift paddles. The speed and smoothness of manual shifts also changes, depending on which drive mode you've selected.
But compared to other competitors with automated manual transmissions, the RC F doesn't quite measure up.
May 8, 2015
April was a quiet month for our 2015 Lexus RC F. We didn't go on any road trips or rip it up at a high-performance driving event. Instead, the RC F stayed close to our Santa Monica corporate office, filling in for commuting and date nights. As a result, we added only about 1,300 miles. Fuel economy did rise for the month, though.
May 6, 2015
Let's just say you've hypothetically stopped at an empty rural intersection in a 2015 Lexus RC F. There's no oncoming traffic in any direction. It's just you and emptiness. You've done your hypothetical pre-flight prep: "Sport S+" mode selected, traction/stability control safety nets loosened, gear shifter in manual mode. You let your foot off the brake and the RC F creeps out slowly.
Now you turn the wheel in and give the RC F the spurs. The 5.0-liter V8 spins up, the rear tires break loose, and there you are, rear end hanging out like an Alabama dirt track racer. You catch the slide with a bit of opposite steer and then tug on the right shift paddle for an upshift as the digital tach approaches the 7,100 rpm redline. The RC F's rear tires bark slightly as second gear catches and then you're off, hammering towards the horizon and distant ribbons of curving pavement.
This RC F is your typical Lexus about as much as Al Capone was just your typical beverage distributor.
May 4, 2015
"Our RC F is a pre-production vehicle on loan from Lexus and has one option package that is not yet available on production models. It's called the Performance package, and it bundles the torque-vectoring differential ($1,750 a la carte), 20-spoke wheels ($1,500 a la carte), and a carbon-fiber roof and rear spoiler. We will post a future update when pricing is announced."
We wrote this in the introduction of our 2015 Lexus RC F when it was loaned to us. At the time, we didn't know the full MSRP. We estimated the price at $77,115. Lexus recently updated pricing info for the RC F so we can update our calculations. Read on for final pricing.
May 1, 2015
I've been driving our 2015 Lexus RC F for a few days now. Unfortunately, there hasn't been much opportunity for full-throttle acceleration runs or weekend getaways along twisting, ocean-side roads. Instead it's been a lot of highway driving and commuting around town. But sitting in traffic provides ample time to admire what Lexus has done with the RC F's interior. If this were my car, it'd be one of the high points.
April 28, 2015
Grandma was in town recently and volunteered to entertain the Kid for the evening, allowing the Wife and I something like a date night. Sweet. This little arrangement came up suddenly and for a romantic evening out, the Chevy Colorado, which I'd already signed out, would not do. The 2015 Lexus RC F was the only thing left with a hint of luxury and Travis Langness did me a solid favor by trading keys.
Driving home, my first time behind the wheel of the RC F, I began to have doubts. On the highway, there was more bump and shake than I'd expected. My expectations suffered from short-term memory loss, however, as I soon remembered the last time I drove the IS F. Lexus does small, medium and big sedan comfort very well, but hasn't quite nailed the ride formula for sharp and sporty.
Maybe the Colorado would've been a better choice.
April 13, 2015
Our 2015 Lexus RC F wasn't about to let us overlook its desire for scheduled service at 5,000 miles. The instrument panel first displays a polite "service soon" warning. When the need grows more immediate, it switches to "service now." Within a few days of seeing the latter of the two cues, we took the RC F in for maintenance.
April 9, 2015
The 2015 Lexus RC F has four drive modes that alter its acceleration and change the look of the LCD gauges. The speedometer on the right is analog and remains consistent throughout all modes. It isn't very useful though, since the numbers are small and aren't really in your line of sight.
I can't really comment on the nuances of the drive modes since I don't have a road test background, but I will say this: When you're driving in "Normal" mode, it doesn't feel like the car has 467 horsepower. The RC F doesn't drive like you think it would until you're in "Sport S+," the highest setting. I think Sport S+ also has the best gauge layout, partly because it reminds me of the Lexus LFA gauges. Well, a slightly less cool version.
April 8, 2015
We added about 1,400 miles to our 2015 Lexus RC F in March and averaged 19.6 mpg, which is somewhat better than the EPA estimate of 19 combined. James's road trip to Arizona helped us nudge that number higher last month.
March 25, 2015
The 2015 Lexus RC F should be a prime candidate for road trips. Obviously not with kids or bulky leisure equipment in tow, but for the type of two-person, plus-maybe-a-pet-or-two vacations I take, a luxury coupe is just about the perfect choice. You know, like this luxury coupe. But does the RC F deliver as expected? To find out, I set out with my dog Maggie to visit my folks in Arizona.
March 16, 2015
When we got our 2015 Lexus RC F, it was delivered to us fully broken in and ready to take to our test track. With a 467 horsepower V8 and starting price just north of $60K, the 2015 RC F has the unenviable task of bringing the fight to sports car behemoths like the BMW M4. With its torque-vectoring differential, carbon-fiber roof and carbon-fiber spoiler, the RC F certainly looks up for a fight. We have performance numbers for both coupes. So which one wins at a stoplight drag race? Read on to find out.
March 2, 2015
I swear I'm not trying to gloat, but it was 85 degrees and sunny in southern California just a few days ago. While the east coast was being attacked by snownadoes, I was breaking in to a sweat just by going outside. That meant I had the air conditioning in our long-term 2015 Lexus RC F set to "LO" and the ventilated seats set to their highest output setting.
I suggested the use of the cooling function on the seat to a friend of mine when she got in the Lexus. After a few minutes, she commented that she could feel them working from both the back- and butt-positions. I had my seats set to the highest ventilation position, too, but I couldn't feel a thing. Apparently, this difference came down to a choice in wardrobe.
February 26, 2015
After 100 miles of dashing through the twisty bits of my local mountain roads, I should've had a wide smile on my face given that I had our long-term 2015 Lexus RC F for the weekend. This 467-horsepower luxury sport coupe is comfortable, and there's plenty of power on tap. As Jay Kavanagh previously mentioned though, it's just too heavy, especially for this kind of Sunday fun.
At 4,040 pounds, our long-term RC F is about 170 pounds heavier than the standard RC 350 F Sport that we tested a few months ago. That's not a huge difference, but the RC F is about 500 pounds heavier than most of its top rivals.
February 20, 2015
Our long-term 2015 Lexus RC F is positioned as a contender to the BMW M4 and Mercedes-AMG C63. In my estimation, the RC F plays it too safe to be a viable alternative.
February 19, 2015
Case in point: Our new long-term 2015 Lexus RC F. It looks menacing and purposeful, from the bulging fenders, huge grille, fancy wheels and carbon-fiber bits to that odd, stacked quad exhaust system.
February 13, 2015
It didn't take long for our long-term 2015 Lexus RC F to reach the 5,000-mile mark. In fairness, the RC F showed up to our office with 3,120 miles already on the odometer, so it's not like we've been driving it around the clock, but 1,800 miles in four weeks definitely qualifies it as a popular car.
February 12, 2015
I had our long-term 2015 Lexus RC F over the weekend, but before I could even sit down, I noticed the extravagant door panel. "Whoa. That's a lot of colors," I thought. "Black, gray, silver, red, carbon fiber...That's five. Is carbon fiber a color?" I said aloud. Then I started counting materials and the numbers rose even higher.
Before you read on, count the number of materials you can spot on the door and see if it matches my tally. And yes, stitching counts.
February 11, 2015
Our 2015 Lexus RC F has what Lexus calls a "Remote Touchpad" to control the navigation system and various other functions. It's a further evolution of the mouse-like device we had in our 2013 GS 350 sedan.
February 6, 2015
Our long-term 2015 Lexus RC F has only been in the fleet for a few weeks but it's already on track to hit its mileage goal. We've put about 1,800 miles on the odometer over the last few weeks (it arrived to us as a tester with 3,120 on the clock) and that's definitely enough for us to start tracking its fuel economy. At this rate, we'll definitely hit 10,000 miles of testing by the time six months rolls around.
Over the four weeks, it would seem we've done more driving with the use-the-big-V8-to-turn-gasoline-into-loud-noises tactic, rather than the see-if-we-can-hit-25-mpg-in-a-V8-sports-car strategy. Maybe things will get better once the RC F goes on a couple of road trips.
January 29, 2015
Our 2015 Lexus RC F has more than enough power. Its 5.0-liter is rated to produce 467 horses and even with nearly two tons to haul around that's enough motivation to get going in a hurry.
January 22, 2015
After a few hundred miles behind the wheel of our 2015 Lexus RC F I'm surprised by how much I like the seats. I say surprised because they don't immediately strike you as great seats the minute you slide into them.
January 15, 2015
Lexus has traditionally been the sensible alternative to German luxury. At the expense of driving dynamics, a Lexus offered a top-notch interior, pillow-soft ride and outstanding reliability for less money. That has taken the company far in a very short time, but now it has decided to take on its competition head-on with sharp looks and wicked power.
We have six months with our RC F to find out if it has what it takes to break out from the pack. That should be enough time to put at least 10,000 miles on the sport coupe and see where it stands.