2020 Lexus RC F Review

RC F

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2020 Lexus RC F Overview

The Lexus RC F takes the performance of the regular RC coupe and dials it up to eleven. It faces fierce competition from the Audi RS 5, BMW M4, Cadillac ATS-V, and Mercedes-Benz AMG C 63 Coupe. The RC F gets an update for 2020, getting mechanical, structural, and visual enhancements, along with a ferocious new top-of-the-line trim.

Lexus saw fit to introduce tasteful exterior improvements to the 2020 RC F. You’ll notice the new headlights incorporate the “swoosh” lighting signature, replacing last year’s two-piece units. The reshaped grille comes to a sharper end at the bottom of the bumper, bordering a flat, color-contrasting lip spoiler. On the opposite end, new LED taillights echo the front lights. The restyled rear bumper looks cleaner than the one it replaces and retains the F brand’s quartet of exhaust tips.

This year also marks the arrival of the new RC F Track Edition. Notably, the RC F boasts improved aerodynamics from a unique carbon fiber front splitter. A fixed carbon fiber rear spoiler replaces the active spoiler on ordinary RC F vehicles, generating an additional 58 pounds of downforce. A carbon fiber roof and hood contribute further to the RC F Track Edition’s estimated 176 pounds of weight savings. Inside, the Track Edition receives a standard red leather interior, Alcantara seat accents, and red carbon fiber accents.

Both the RC F and RC F Track Edition employ the same 5.0-liter naturally aspirated V8 as last year’s model, but subtle tweaks yield 472 horsepower and 395 pound-feet of torque, which are increases of 5 and 6, respectively. The RC F also carries over its 8-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters to drive the rear wheels. Enthusiast drivers will be pleased to note that Lexus made last year’s optional launch-control system, which lets drivers push a button to optimize traction and throttle control for maximum acceleration, standard for 2020.

Other than the powertrain, an extensive list of improvements went into the suspension, tires, and steering system. Lexus includes new Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires, developed specifically for the RC F, standard on every vehicle. RC F Track Edition units specifically benefit from Brembo carbon ceramic brake rotors, which are both lighter and better able to withstand the heat cycling typical of hard-core driving. The exclusive lightweight 19-inch BBS alloy wheels shave further precious pounds.

The 2020 RC F’s comprehensive set of standard and optional features carry over from last year. The most basic versions include HID headlights, LED taillights, keyless access and start, leatherette upholstery, power front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, a full-LCD instrument cluster, HD and satellite radio, and Apple CarPlay.

The Premium Package offers driver’s seat memory, a heated steering wheel, auto-dimming mirrors, a power tilt-and-telescoping steering column, and a rear-seat center console with cupholders. Meanwhile, the Navigation/Mark Levinson Audio Package bundles navigation, machined aluminum control knobs, dynamic voice commands, a 17-speaker Mark Levinson surround sound system and a larger infotainment display. Full LED headlights, orange-painted brakes, a power moonroof, and the torque-vectoring differential are standalone options.

The RC F may be a serious performance vehicle, but it still keeps safety in mind. All examples come with a reversing camera and rain-sensing wipers. Blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert come with the Premium Package. You can also specify a parking-assist feature. The RC as a whole performed excellently in its latest 2019 round of Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) crash evaluations, with perfect scores in every category.

Lexus’ RC F has showcased the brand’s best efforts in performance, balance, and speed. The 2020 model’s renewed focus on power-to-weight ratios and the addition of the RC F Track Edition take those concepts even further.

Updated

Kyree is new to the automotive journalism scene, but has voiced snarky public opinions about cars for quite some time. When he's not drooling over the latest European luxury sled, he's designing web experiences or writing backend code.

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