• Jul 9, 2009
2009 Lexus SC430 Pebble Beach Edition – Click above for high-res image gallery

While the Lexus IS C is enjoying strong early sales and the luxury Toyota marque prepares to launch a version with the 5.0-liter V8 from the IS F, the top-of-the-line SC 430 grows increasingly irrelevant and long-in-the-tooth. However, contrary to reports that surfaced this time last year – 'tis the season for convertibles, after all – Lexus is indeed planning a successor to the range-topping coupe-cabrio.

Reports indicate that, far from the IS C replacing the aging SC 430, a clean-slate successor to the big roadster is in the planning stages. Because the SC has been around so long, Toyota's designers and engineers are reportedly going back to the drawing board. What they're apparently coming up with eschews the current model's complex folding hard top – one of the first on the market after the Mitsubishi 3000GT VR4 Spyder and Mercedes SLK – in favor of a simpler, lighter folding soft top.

With a new SC 430, an IS F convertible and a potential LF-A roadster all in the pipeline, the forecast looks sunny for Lexus.

[Source: Car and Driver]


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  • 27 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Oops. I meant Mercedes SL. Sorry for the typo.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Protzenegger - I would have balked at your comment before sunday, after watching clarkson I guess that folding hard top is crucial to the SL crowd.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ el-indiano: Because the R8 costs $20-40K more than the SL500, and doesn't come with a folding hardtop.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @el-indiano
        So... you think the 440HP Supercharged XLR-V is a slow boat? Last time I checked it pulls off 60mph in 4.4 seconds and has enough cornering grip to satisfy anybody who buys a hard-top convertible... I personally think the XLR is attractive and distinctive enough on the outside, plus the all leather interior in the V is very nice.
        I believe the XLR-V (and STS-V) are the first production cars to have the supercharger down between the cylinder banks... starting a good trend, with everyone sinking all types of compressors down low between the cylinders...

        Ignorance is bliss, I guess...
      • 5 Years Ago
      Thank heavens they've managed to keep those dashing good looks.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Yawn. The original SC 430 actually had good looks and was different, but this is boring. The rats at the feeder bar will continue to buy crap like this just because.
      • 5 Years Ago
      One of the ugliest cars ever made.
      Ugly with the top up and ugly with the top down.
      And yes, the only people I have ever seen driving this car are blonde middle class white women. lol
      I have had two male neighbors that got embarrassed for buying these kinds of cars.
      One bought a Boxster and the other one of these and when they realized they were women's cars they ended up selling them. Quickly. lol
      • 5 Years Ago
      I don't believe the bit about using a soft top. A folding hardtop is the price of admission in these luxury convertibles, and I find it highly unlikely that they wouldn't continue to use one. No doubt they will make it lighter, simpler, faster, better, etc.
        • 5 Years Ago
        more room to put "for sale" real estate signs in the trunk if they go with the soft top.
        :)
      • 5 Years Ago
      Huh. I was under the impression that the IS C would replace the SC.
      In this case, what will be the IS C and SC's respective competitors?
        • 5 Years Ago
        It's more like a temporary replacement. The SC is much more expensive and (was) more prestigious in its day, competing with the 6-Series and SL-Class, whereas the IS C battles the 3-Series and C70 end of the market.

        I think Lexus should instead build a GS coupe and convertible (GS C?) from the upcoming redesigned GS. Like the SC, it would have different styling and interior bits, but same platform and maybe come V-8 only to, like the 6-Series, allow the company to charge more over the sedan.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I think that the SC will compete with the Mercedes Sl and the outgoing Cadillac XLR.
      • 5 Years Ago
      blonde female REMAX agents who get way too much sun.

      im so glad lexus continues to sell this pos for people who put signs in peoples yards.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I just really hope they don't lengthen the wheelbase to try to fit 4 adults in this car. That's the best part about why I love them so much. They leave you with enough room to put anything you might need to carry, but without having that LOOOOOOOOONG folding hardtop that needs to accommodate 4 adult seating positions. That's why the IS C top looks like a damn Chrysler Sebring in profile.

      http://image.automotive.com/f/miscellaneous/2008-chrysler-sebring-convertible-brings-top-down-at-26-145/6262276+w630+cr1+re0+ar1/2008-chrysler-sebring-left-top-downjpg.jpg

      http://www.motorauthority.com/content/thumbs/2/0/2010_lexus_is_250c_convertible_paris_001-1002-950x650.jpg

      The SC is not a damn family car and I hope they keep it that way.
      • 5 Years Ago
      It's always looked like a slightly bloated cousin to the last-gen Audi TT to me. Never been a fan.

      The SC400 was awesome, though.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @dwightB There are two of them (SC430PB) in Austin, TX. I own one of them. ( ; It's a nice car but it's definitely a chick's car. It drives like a heavy Buick. My old 05 TL out performed it in every way except acceleration.

        I recommend Ebaymotors. I saw a few on there last year. I got mine from Dallas.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Sam, your TL = 4 door = fail IMO. I am NOT a fan of many vehicles with more than 2 doors. All I need room for is myself and whatever woman I decide to spend my evening with, lol.

        And before you try to jinx me, I have no children and plan on getting a vasectomy in the near future, lol!
        • 5 Years Ago
        "It's a nice car but it's definitely a chick's car. It drives like a heavy Buick"

        Thanks :). It's refreshing to read comments from owners who take a balanced look at their cars and get why most wouldn't care for them, though there are clearly positive attributes somewhere that made it a worthwhile purchase for you.. That'd be one of my bigger gripes right there though, I've seen about 99% women driving it, 1% gay men. So the boulevard cruiser handling and typical owner audience are about as far from enthusiasts as you can get, which is why I think a lot of people hate on it.
      • 5 Years Ago
      i donno

      i think the SC 'll be back to its roots as a full size luxury coupe / caprio

      to compete with Mercedes Benz CL & Bentley Continental GT
        • 5 Years Ago
        may be they 'll reviled the caprio version first then the coupe form

        +

        i guess also it 'll be based on even the LFA chassis or the next generation GS one

        because off-course it 'll have top line F model and that F model engine 'll be the LFA engine as the LFA & NG GS
      • 5 Years Ago
      In SoCal the ONLY people driving these things are wealthy, upper middle-aged white women - normally blond.

      Soft top = step backwards. Can't see Toyota doing that.
        • 5 Years Ago
        step backwards? That's why all the fun cars use them right? soft tops are lighter and today provide just as much sound insulation as hard tops, are a lot less complex, and lighter.

        oh. wait. toyota. nm. Lightness and fun don't matter. yeah it'd be a step backwards for them to join such ludicrous examples as the A5/S5 cab, various Bentleys, Lamborghinis, etc. Full speed ahead. The IS is such a looker anywho, I'm not sure how they SC successor could improve. Excuse me while I go outside and fondly admire a solara.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Its not just SO CAL. White blond suburban women around the USA 'rejoice'
        • 5 Years Ago
        Zamafir,

        Sorry, they are not quieter. Have owned six soft-top covertibles, none of which was quieter than the coupe counterpart. They are much better than in the past, but, no, they are not quieter. Sorry. Of course you can make the agrument for the Bentley but those few cars can hardly be considered mainstream. Good friend has a 2001 MB320 soft top...it's still not as quiet as a '95 Mustang 2-top Cobra I owned. Soft tops are dead as a a stump. Ford is looking at a folding steel roof for its next model Mustang.

        As for fun, guess that's why the new BMWs, Mazdas, MBs are folding steel roofs and a hard top option is available for other "fun cars."

        Yes, the folding steel roof is more complex, but as time goes on engineering will make it less so and the weight will be less too. And yes, for the people that race or time trial their cars, well, they are not in the convert market anyway. For them every pound represents a longer time and they won't compromise. The big stumbling block for the steel roof is the cost. Frankly I was surprised to see the Mazda have the steel roof as an option for that reason. But once again engineering and time marches on and costs will come down. There are too many pluses with a folding steel roof vs. a soft top. To me the biggest down side is the fender bender in the rear with top down $$$.

        As for looks, well that's totally subjective. One man's meat is another's..... Thankfully we have a choice.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Kill that Solaris with fire!
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