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Lexus kicks the lovely LC 500 up a notch with the Inspiration Series

Hagerty logo Hagerty 1/13/2021 Nathan Petroelje
a car parked on the side of a mountain: Lexus © Provided by Hagerty Lexus

Alright, let’s be real: The Lexus LC 500 coupe is the most beautiful front-engine, two-door, V-8-powered car on the market today. I’d welcome debate in the comments, but for my money, nothing else currently on sale matches the LC’s elegance, sumptuous style, and concept-car design. In fact, just yesterday, I told someone it couldn’t get any better-looking. I was wrong.

a close up of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front end studio © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front end studio a body of water: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series rear end studio © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series rear end studio a car parked on the side of a road: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series side profile studio © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series side profile studio

Say hello to the 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series, a limited-run variant of the slinky coupe derived from a special collaboration between Lexus engineers and air race pilot Yoshihide Muroya. When Muroya needed some development on his race plane, he tapped Lexus to help improve its aerodynamic behavior. The Japanese automaker’s engineers, using data collected from the brand’s vehicles, were able to implement a few improvements in the wings that helped Muroya clinch the 2017 Red Bull Air Race world championship.

a road with a mountain in the background: Lexus © Provided by Hagerty Lexus

In celebration of that partnership, and as a way to adapt their findings back into the car world, the engineers turned to the LC to create this ultra-special-edition car. The focal point is a carbon-fiber reinforced plastic (CRFP) rear wing nearly six feet in length. The wing drapes over the LC’s shapely posterior, angling down at each end like an accent line in a comic book. It’s fitting for a car that, from certain angles, has a rather geometric, animated look to it.

a car parked on the side of a road: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series rear end runway © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series rear end runway a close up of a computer: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series wing detail close up © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series wing detail close up

Predictably, Lexus engineers stuffed the Inspiration Series with content. It will only be available in Obsidian exterior paint—a rather Henry Ford-esque move, but the paint works on this thing. Gorgeous five-spoke, 21-inch wheels fill the wheel wells, and the same CRFP material from that fancy wing can be found in the coupe’s roof. Inside, a serialized badge adorns the center console to let you know which of the 100 units you’re driving. The black Alcantara-trimmed sport seats with Saddle Tan accents look all-day comfortable, a staple for GT cars such as this one. Equally as important for day trips across continents? Sound. And the Inspiration Series LC doesn’t disappoint here either, offering as standard the Mark Levinson 13-speaker Reference Surround Sound Audio system.

a close up of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series interior overhead © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series interior overhead a view of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series seats detail © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series seats detail

Or maybe just turn the surround sound down and let Lexus’ sublime, 5.0-liter, free-breathing V-8 play you a tune no scherzo could replicate. In this application, the LC’s eight-cylinder makes 471 horsepower and 391 lb-ft of torque. When paired with the LC’s 10-speed automatic transmission, Lexus says the LC is good for a 4.4-second romp to 60. The Torsen limited-slip differential—optional in other flavors of the LC 500—comes standard on the Inspiration Series, as does the Yamaha performance suspension.

The LC stands on the shoulders of one of the all-time great coupes, the operatic V-10 toting Lexus LFA. We named it one of our 2021 Bull Market List cars, and if we were betting folks, we’d hope to one day see the LC 500 get the same respect down the road. Just 100 units of the LC 500 Inspiration Series will be created, and Lexus says they’ll arrive at dealerships later this winter. While there’s no word on pricing, expect each of these 100 units to start will over the $100,000 mark. Steep? Maybe, but when a car looks like a million bucks, perhaps obtaining one for ten percent could be considered a steal.

a car parked on the side of a mountain: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front three quarter in mountains © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front three quarter in mountains 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series rear driving shot © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series rear driving shot a airplane that is driving down the road with a mountain in the background: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series car and plane © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series car and plane a car parked in a parking lot: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series head light style shot © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series head light style shot a car parked on the side of a road: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series rear end runway © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series rear end runway a car parked in a parking lot: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series wing detail © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series wing detail a car parked on the side of a road: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front wheel © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front wheel a close up of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front end studio © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front end studio a car parked on the side of a road: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series side profile studio © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series side profile studio a close up of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front end studio © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front end studio a close up of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front three quarter studio hero © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series front three quarter studio hero a close up of a computer: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series wing detail close up © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series wing detail close up a close up of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series head light detail © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series head light detail a close up of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series tail light detail © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series tail light detail a view of a computer: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series vent detail © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series vent detail a close up of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series grille detail © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series grille detail a close up of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series rear end studio © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series rear end studio a close up of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series interior overhead © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series interior overhead a desk with a computer mouse: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series door panel detail © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series door panel detail a group of luggage sitting on the side of the road: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series back seats detail © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series back seats detail a view of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series seats detail © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series seats detail a close up of a car: 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series vent detail © Provided by Hagerty 2021 Lexus LC 500 Inspiration Series vent detail

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