2020 Lexus RC 350 AWD: The everyday sports car… and all year round

2020 Lexus RC 350 AWD: The everyday sports car… and all year round

With a relatively low ground clearance, difficult access to the rear seats and a trunk that is generally not the most generous, the coupes are now fewer than before.

While consumers have generally abandoned sedans in favor of SUVs, the same phenomenon is observed with coupes. Buyers have abandoned them in favor of… SUVs.

Fortunately, some diehards remain, at least for now. This is the case with the Lexus RC. We put it to the test and here’s what we thought about it.

311 horses please

The entry-level version, the RC 300 AWD, is powered by a 3.5 L V6 engine. Well-known within the large Toyota and Lexus family, it delivers 260 horsepower. Nothing very impressive for a vehicle of this size.

On the other hand, for an extra of just over $ 13,000, we make the jump to the RC 350 AWD, a much more complete car. Under its long front hood, we find the same six-cylinder block, but its power increases to 311 horsepower. We have to admit that this cavalry is just perfect for this car.

Whether you opt for the deflated version of the V6 or not, you’ll be treated to a six-speed automatic transmission. While not lightning-fast, she operates well and without complaining.

A muzzle that points to the stars

The Lexus RC 300 and RC 350 come standard with a four-wheel drive system. This is the main characteristic that it can be used all year round.

On the other hand, since it was first designed to be a rear-wheel drive car, adding the necessary dishes to make the front wheels also drive forced the front elevation. Could we have gone the extra mile at Lexus? Yes. Is it catastrophic? No.

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Photo: Lexus

The art of standing out

In a segment dominated by the German trio made up of the Audi A5, BMW 4 Series and Mercedes-Benz C Class, the Lexus RC is just an extra.

In Quebec, only 29 were sold in 2019. Although this is not a priori good news for the manufacturer, consumers can appreciate its exclusivity. Indeed, very slim are the chances that you will be more than one to have one on your street.

However, don’t wait forever to get one if it represents what you want. We have seen what the Japanese manufacturer has done with its GS, a sedan packed with qualities. We rationalized to keep only one mid-size sedan, the ES.

At Lexus, we currently have two coupes, the LC in addition to the RC. Although it is even less popular (only 6 units sold in 2019), the LC plays the role of standard bearer within the brand. What’s more, the convertible version is expected soon. For all these reasons, the predicted future for RC is not the brightest.

444636 lexus rc 350 awd 2020 la sportive de tous les jours et de toute l annee
Photo: Lexus

You will need to become a computer engineer

At Lexus, using the infotainment system is a real headache. And the RC is no exception. Its menus give the impression that you could browse for hours and always discover new ones. And that’s not to mention its touchpad which requires surgical precision to operate. No thanks! Frankly, the whole infotainment system is unnecessarily complex and unpleasant to use.

444641 lexus rc 350 awd 2020 la sportive de tous les jours et de toute l annee
Photo: Lexus

Consumption that is not shocking

During our trial period of the RC 350 AWD, the on-board computer recorded an average fuel consumption of 12.0 L / 100 km. This rating is slightly higher than that advanced by Natural Resources Canada, which is 11.2 L / 100 km. It should be noted that the consumption announced by the federal body for the RC 300 AWD is the same, i.e. 11.2 L / 100 km. This is one more reason not to go for the basic version.

Without forgetting the V8

Because a V6 is fine, but it’s hard to say no to two extra cylinders, Lexus also offers the RC F.

Less accessible with its base price exceeding $ 87,000, it can boast of being much more radical. Its 5.0L V8 delivers all 472 horsepower to the rear wheels.

At a time when cars tend to adopt the shape of an egg to maximize aerodynamics, to reduce displacement size in order to reduce fuel consumption and polluting emissions, the RC F is a real dinosaur for cars. connoisseurs. However, it could be criticized for not offering a manual transmission. As long as to address purists …

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