TodayApril 15, 2022

2021 Lexus LC 500 Convertible Global Debut at LA Auto Show

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Professional former race car driver Scott Pruett works with Lexus as a consultant at its Lexus Performance Driving School and helped tweak and tune the 2021 LC 500 Convertible. “It’s been fun for me to help with not just the coupe but also the convertible,” says Pruett of the 2021 Lexus LC 500 Convertible

Los Angeles auto show global debut

*Global Debut at 2019 Los Angeles International Auto Show
• Performance Luxury Convertible Expands Two-Door Flagship LC Family
• Robust Structural Rigidity Delivers Performance Handling
Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and Amazon Alexa Compatibility
• Convertible Top Opens in Approx. 15 seconds
• 471-horsepower Naturally Aspirated V8 Engine
• Barrett-Jackson to Auction One-of-a-Kind LC 500 Convertible Next Year
• On Sale in Summer 2020

What do you do when you are unveiling a hot new performance convertible? Bring out the guy that put the performance in the convertible. Famous racecar driver Scott Pruett talks about the tweaks made on the convertible.

2021 LC 500 Convertible Dimensions and Specifications (Preliminary Specifications)

Overall length(in./mm) 187.4 in./4760 mm
Overall width(in./mm) 75.9 in./1920 mm
Overall height(in./mm) 53.1 in./1350 mm
Wheelbase(in./mm) 112.9 in./ 2870 mm
Overall Weight (lbs.) 4,497 lbs.
Roof Operation(seconds) Approx. 15 sec. (open), 16 sec. (close)

Expanding the aspirational two-door LC family, the LC 500 Convertible offers an additional way to stimulate the senses –with the top down. The exterior of the new LC Convertible stylishly blends the coupe’s unique roofline with the character of a convertible, achieving an exquisite profile with the top open or closed.

Great handling dynamics

Engineers aimed to retain similar handling dynamics to the LC 500 coupe while also improving chassis rigidity with the addition and relocation of various structural braces. The LC Convertible’s suspension is tuned specifically to complement the subtle changes in weight between the two platforms, as a reduction of unsprung weight in the front suspension improves the overall stroke. In the rear, engineers were able to further enhance structural rigidity by reshaping and relocating the rear suspension brace tower.

Drivers of the front-engine, rear-wheel-drive LC Convertible, can expect similar breath-taking performance to the coupe, thanks to the powerful drivetrain combination of the5.0-liter V8 engine paired with the seamless Direct-Shift 10-speed automatic transmission. The naturally aspirated, direct-injection V8 is rated to produce 471 horsepower at 7,100 rpm and 398 lb-ft of torque at 4,800 rpm.

One of the cool, well warm, parts Pruett told me about was that the HVAC system is designed to adjust the temperature automatically regardless of whether the top is raised or lowered. If the top is down, neck heaters are designed to help keep the upper body warm. The Lexus Climate Concierge with Upper Body Heating automatically manages the air conditioner, seat heaters, neck heaters, and steering-wheel heater to ensure the cabin is at the ideal temperature even if the outside weather is not.

Engineers also took care to ensure the driving experience is ideal for all occupants. The cabin is designed to reduce wind noise thanks to the unique shape of the beltline and rear molding to suppress wind from entering. A transparent polycarbonate wind deflector helps restrict unwanted air from entering the cabin during city and freeway driving so occupants can enjoy comfortably conversing with the top down.

While efforts are taken to keep certain sounds out, the powerful roar of the naturally-aspirated V8 engine of the LC family is a sound to savor. The engine’s intake pulses are naturally carried through a diaphragm into a sound pipe that carries the sounds, not the air itself, To make the engine’s throaty voice heard while the top is down.

Lou Ann Hammond

Lou Ann Hammond is the CEO of Carlist and Driving the Nation. She is the co-host of Real Wheels Washington Post carchat every Friday morning and is the Automotive, energy correspondent for The John Batchelor Show and a Contributor to Automotive Electronics magazine headquartered in Korea. Hammond is a founding member of the Women's World Car of the Year #WWCOTY, and board member of the Women in Automotive.

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