"Lexus recycles" is a headline you'd be more likely to see on our sister-site Autoblog Green, but we're not talking about production materials or old cars...we're talking concept cars here. Having shown the LF-A concept car here in Detroit two years ago at the 2005 NAIAS, Toyota's premium brand reworked it and brought it back to share the stage with the pre-production IS-F performance sedan at their Detroit press conference.
The LF-A is a front-engined supercar with a 500-horsepower V10. The 2007 version has some revised styling; the front end, in particular, is more curvaceous and enticing than the 2005 show car on which it's based.
Will Toyota give it the green light for production? Nothing's confirmed, but the signs are pointing in the right direction. Lexus revealed that they've been conducting engineering analyses on the car. Test mules have been spotted undergoing road testing, and at the press conference, Lexus executives suggested it could be the next F model to join their new performance line-up alongside the IS-F.
Does the world need another supercar? No, not really. Do we want one? Oh yes, yes we do.
Follow the jump for the official press release and our own high-resolution gallery here.
For our comprehensive listing of everything from Detroit, click here.
Lexus Unveils Two High-Performance Vehicles at the 2007 North American International Auto Show
January 8, 2007 - Detroit - Lexus unveiled the IS-F high-performance luxury sedan and the LF-A sports-car concept at a press conference today at the 2007 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit.
The all-new 2008 IS-F high-performance luxury sedan will deliver more than 400 horsepower from a 5.0-liter V8 engine when it goes into production. The LF-A supercar concept is equipped with a V10 engine that produces more than 500 horsepower. Together, the two exciting new cars make a dramatic statement of Lexus performance.
The IS-F and LF-A are very different vehicles, yet they share the same DNA, design philosophy, and heritage. Prominent in both vehicles, the "F" designation was first conceived nearly 20 years ago with a project internally coded "Circle-F," with the "F" standing for "flagship." This was the original code for what became the Lexus Division. The Circle-F designation further evolved into the code name Flagship One, or F1, and the first F1 concept developed into Lexus' first vehicle, the LS. Since then, the "F" code has come to signify a special vehicle program within Lexus that falls outside the normal engineering and development process.
"Lexus has long been perceived as the maker of mainstream luxury vehicles, but the unveiling of the IS-F and LF-A not only changes this perception, it also introduces a new Lexus marque," said Bob Carter, Lexus Division group vice president and general manager. "The 'F' shared by both vehicles is the signature for a new high-performance marque conceived by an engineering team that dared to turn their dream of 'a Lexus like no other' into a reality."
LF-A Sports Car Concept
The LF-A sports-car concept was originally shown at the 2005 NAIAS to express a bold new direction in styling for the Lexus brand. The goals for the new LF-A are no different than they were with the original concept: To build a supercar with world-class performance that is uniquely Lexus.
As with all new Lexus vehicles, the styling of the LF-A is rooted in a design direction called L-finesse. The concept of L-finesse was used to shape and detail the original LF-A, and it was used to reshape, redetail and redefine this latest version. Lexus has further refined the styling of the new LF-A to enhance its exotic nature with a greater use of curved surfaces and interesting details.
The running gear of the LF-A is just as it was with the original, powered by a high-revving 500-plus horsepower V10 engine. Its front mid-engine placement, along with a rear-mounted transaxle and rear-mounted radiators, allows for excellent weight distribution. The horsepower, superior aerodynamics, and revised styling makes a top speed of 200 mph not only possible but probable.
An "F" logo, indicating the vehicle's status as a part of the new "F" marque, is located on each front fender.
"The first LF-A was a pure concept, but one that we went so far as to conduct engineering analysis on," said Carter. "This latest concept is much closer to a vehicle that we would bring to market, and one in which we will be gauging consumer interest."
Lexus LF-A Sports Concept Preliminary Specifications
Engine: V10 (under 5.0-liters)
Horsepower: More than 500
Top Speed: Approximately 200 MPH
Overall Length: 175.6
Overall Width: 74.6
Overall Height: 48.0