By Larry Lark, contributor
I can’t think of many more fun ways to enjoy summer than behind the wheel of the 2021 Lexus LC 500 convertible. I fell in love at first sight.
The Lexus LC 500 represents the most passionate expression of the Lexus brand. The eye-catching coupe displays a unique mesh grille that spreads across the front of the car. It has a large glass panel and blacked-out rear pillars that creates a floating roof appearance.
One of the most stunning aspects of the LC 500 is its unique light signature at night. The taillamps were inspired by the glow of a jet’s afterburners, while the ultra-compact, triple-projector LED headlamps are not only striking, they’re half the size of conventional headlamps.
Add an “Infrared” coat of enamel, 21-inch, forged alloy wheels with polished finish and gloss black accents. Then drop of the top. It’s not a fair fight. You’ve officially been seduced.
Push the start button and be prepared to be wowed by the LC 500’s dulcet exhaust notes overwhelm.
Drop the hammer down and the 5.0-liter V8 engine springs to life, along with a full-throated roar through the variable active exhaust. The LC 500 has an output of 471 hp and 398 lb.-ft. of peak torque. The LC is also capable of delivering a 0-to-60 mph time of 4.4 seconds and up to a manufacturer estimated 25 mpg on the highway.
Paired with a 10-speed direct-shift automatic transmission, the combo connects driver to machine. Paddle shifters are at the ready if you want to make pretend manual shifts.
The LC 500 has a back seat, but let’s not kid ourselves. It’s only for insurance purposes. It’s a two-seater. I was able to squeeze one golf bag in the trunk, and another crammed behind the front seats. Good enough.
The LC emphasizes a balance between function and comfort, sporting intent and luxury. The low instrument panel position, hood line and narrow pillars give the driver a commanding view of the road.
Lexus designers paid close attention to detail when creating the LC. The exclusive leather, heated and ventilated seats feel as good as they look. With a two-part construction technique, the seat back drapes over the shoulder area and then wraps around the seat back. Components in the shoulder area help hold the driver securely in cornering maneuvers.
A number of creature comforts guild the lily. My personal favorites were the 12-speaker premium sound system, dynamic navigation system, backup camera, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, and the drop top.
Deployment is as simple as lowering the windows and pushing a button. You can even lower or raise the soft top on the open road at speeds 35 miles per hour or lower.
My tester came with a Touring Package ($5,290) that adds semi-analline leather-trimmed seats, climate concierge with upper-body heating, heater steering wheels, embossed headrests and a
Mark Levinson, 13-speaker, surround sound audio system.
The Lexus Safety System adds complete confidence to the LC 500 equation. Features include pre-collision braking with pedestrian detection, all-speed dynamic radar cruise control, intelligent high-beams, lane-keep and steering assist, lane departure alert, blind spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert, and an auto-dimming inside mirror.
If it helps ease a guilty conscious, a hybrid version is also available. But my advice is go big or go home. The LC 500 will brings its owners endless summers.
Base Price: $102,025
Price As Driven: $113,490
Destination charge is included base price. Vehicles are provided by the manufacturer. List price may vary at local dealerships.