If you look at what Lexus is creating across the board – from cars like the IS 350, to the RC 350, to the LC (and of course the F types)… Lexus is committed to making Sport a key component of the brand… in a current automotive landscape where Sport is getting more and more diluted from the buying a package all together.
Performance may not be the main headliner of the RC 350, but it’s clearly one of the main ingredients. And what I mean by that is: Lexus does not give you Sport… at the cost/expense of everything else. Lexus really excels at providing a well-rounded professional package, with a focus on sophisticated performance.
Would I complain if the RC had more raw horsepower and a manual transmission?? Nope I wouldn’t. But it really helps to understand & appreciate the Lexus vision, when you look at the brand from a perspective of – art appreciation. Because there’s a different kind of ‘architecture’ to Lexus… than your typical sports car. Different inspirations & textures. And I have to admit, that the RC 350 is very satisfying to drive. It’s invigorating & engaging when you want it to be. And the RC’s ability to be striking runs through the car’s DNA through all appendages, even to the seating position… which is prioritized, bolstered, and attention-commanding.
Yet when you pull up on gridlocked rush-hour traffic, the RC 350 yields a sense of calming serenity… rather than anxiety & frustration (like a raw sports car would likely do in the same scenario). The RC is engaging, but it’s not exhausting. And that’s a tricky & refined balance to achieve. Lexus definitely serves a specific customer, who appreciates & admires the performance side of automotive design… but someone who may want/need more than just a sports car in their unpredictable life routine.
If you’ve got nitrous running through your veins, and you’re married & committed to all-out performance, then no, the Lexus RC might not be your cup of tea—quila. The RCF?? Maybe. But for a lot of people out there, the RC 350 (and IS 350) keeps them firmly rooted to the sense of freedom & control that a real sports car delivers. The Lexus RC 350 brings driver’s attention back to the road & the steering wheel. It makes them want to drive their car… rather than make that phone call. And that’s where Lexus benefits all of us as enthusiasts… even if it’s NOT the car that we drive. We all know that the RC 350 would have been a sure-shot call… if it was another generic 3rd-row SUV or crossover. But Lexus chose not to go that route here. Noted.