October 19, 2021


Born to play

2021 Lexus RC F Fuji Speedway Edition review: Exclusive doesn’t always mean good

At least this vehicle appears great. Kyle Hyatt/Roadshow The considered of spending a week with...

At least this vehicle appears great.

Kyle Hyatt/Roadshow

The considered of spending a week with a hyper-confined, keep track of-centered, specific-version vehicle with a major, substantial-revving, in a natural way aspirated V8 is quite damn remarkable. That is the stuff that vehicle fanatics desire about, ideal? Sadly, truth rarely lives up to our dreams, and that is certainly the situation with the 2021 Lexus RC F Fuji Speedway Edition.


  • Fantastic create top quality
  • Sturdy carbon-ceramic brakes

Don’t Like

  • Lazy drivetrain
  • Rough ride
  • Way too expensive

On paper, the RC F Fuji version appears wonderful. It can be acquired tons of carbon fiber, carbon-ceramic brakes and the five.-liter 2UR-GSE V8 you are going to come across in general performance cars like the Lexus LC five hundred, the beloved IS F and the new IS five hundred. That engine creates a respectable 472 horsepower at seven,a hundred rpm and 395 pound-toes of torque at four,800 rpm, but it’s right here that the RC F’s bummers start.

This engine certainly does scream in its upper registers, as evidenced by the revs at which it will make peak electric power. It can be right here exactly where the V8 is remarkable and responsive and alive. Sadly, in the lessen portion of its rev selection, the five.-liter V8 runs on the Atkinson cycle, the very same effectiveness-centered cycle that Toyota takes advantage of in its hybrids. This usually means the valve timing variations to concentration on gasoline effectiveness at the expenditure of electric power, torque and responsiveness.

On paper, owning a more successful vehicle at about-town speeds appears great, but in truth, it will make a keep track of-centered beast like the RC F truly feel lifeless and unexciting. If this have been anything at all but a flagship athletics design, I’d be much less essential, but in a vehicle like this, with a major carbon wing, hyper-intense styling and a sizable value tag, it feels like a enormous misstep. I want my major, in a natural way aspirated V8 to kick ass all the time, and this one doesn’t.

That V8 is paired with an eight-speed computerized transmission. In contrast to the engine, the transmission will work very well in town but allows the driver down on great canyon roadways. It shifts slower than some of the ZF eight-speed ‘boxes I have seasoned and, once more, in a keep track of-centered vehicle, it shouldn’t be this way. At least this transmission is paired with a locking rear differential that will work as marketed and is a welcome addition in the RC F.

You are going to come across this five.-liter V8 in the LC five hundred and IS five hundred.

Kyle Hyatt/Roadshow

The RC F Fuji’s suspension is one more region that really should be spectacular purely primarily based on its specs but doesn’t live up to the hoopla. The entrance double-wishbone suspension characteristics adaptive Sachs dampers and a hollow entrance sway bar. The rear takes advantage of a multi-backlink design and style. The total set up is incredibly stiff and disagreeable about town nevertheless it doesn’t do a outstanding task of managing the RC F in substantial-speed driving. Further more, I come across it tricky to have confidence in the vehicle to continue to be planted as it moves about on rapidly canyon roadways due to the fact it never feels actually settled. The RC F’s obscure digital electric power steering also does a bad task of offering driver suggestions, including to that all round lack of self-confidence on the street.

Arguably the very best issue about the Fuji is its established of 14.9-inch Brembo carbon ceramic brakes. The RC F is a heavy vehicle with a control excess weight of 3,781 lbs . (121 lbs . lighter than the normal RC F), and with almost five hundred hp on faucet, these unflappable brakes are a welcome addition for repeatable, self-confidence-inspiring halting. Coupled with the fairly sticky Michelin Pilot Activity 4S tires, the RC F’s all round grip is great, irrespective of the troubles I have with the suspension.

The RC F’s cabin is a sea of leather-based, Alcantara, carbon fiber and buttons. At six toes, four inches, I’m admittedly taller than most motorists, but I battle to get comfortable in any place. The seats are lovely and very likely extremely supportive for lesser motorists, but soon after an hour in the canyons, I truly feel like they’ve been boxing my kidneys, and it’s not exciting. Headroom also could be superior, thinking of the lack of a moonroof in the carbon-roof-equipped Fuji. The BMW M4 gives more space for heads (and helmets), but at least the RC F has a lot of legroom. The total cabin is exquisitely developed with wonderful components, at least — a hallmark of Lexus merchandise.

The interior is nicely appointed, but the infotainment tech is definitely bad.

Kyle Hyatt/Roadshow

The RC F lacks blind-place checking (many thanks to its carbon fiber facet mirrors) and rear cross-targeted visitors alert, but at least will come with adaptive cruise regulate, computerized unexpected emergency braking, computerized substantial beams, lane-departure warning and the like. But when the safety suite is only Ok, the infotainment program is quite bad. The RC F doesn’t have a touchscreen, but thankfully Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are normal, and my test vehicle is equipped with the optional Mark Levinson audio offer — a necessary incorporate for any Lexus, as far as I’m anxious. The Lexus Enform program is problematic because of to its clunky interface and laggy reaction, not to mention the finicky trackpad which is really hard to use when driving.

The RC F Fuji Speedway Edition has a starting value of $ninety eight,275, which include Lexus’ $one,075 destination charge. That is a more-than-$30,000 quality about the normal RC F, so what, other than exclusivity and carbon ceramic brakes, is Lexus providing consumers for that income? The major aesthetic variances are the carbon fiber hood, rear wing, roof, entrance lip and facet skirts, as very well as purple leather-based and Alcantara interior with carbon trim. You will find also a titanium exhaust program, solid BBS wheels and the aforementioned torque-vectoring rear conclude.

Not numerous of these will be offered.

Kyle Hyatt/Roadshow

But is it well worth it? In shorter, no. The RC F Fuji Speedway Edition is not a extremely great vehicle on general public roadways and it’s not entertaining on winding stretches of canyon roadways, either. It could be great on a race keep track of as its name would suggest (however I can not validate that), but with its punishing ride, cramped interior and disappointing drivetrain, I can not think about selecting this about any other athletics vehicle at this value. For the $102,510 as-tested value of this RC F, I’d alternatively have a foundation Porsche 911, which is both a superior athletics vehicle and a substantially more livable day by day driver. 

For 2022, Lexus made the decision to lengthen the Fuji Speedway Edition by an added 50 units. The company also added a new colour — a wonderful blue termed Electric powered Surge — and gave the Fuji a new established of 19-inch wheels. Sadly, these updates do nothing at all to boost the attractiveness of this tremendous really hard provide.