Lexus has been out of the racing tracks for almost a decade now. This is surprising for a brand that had achieved huge success in the early 2000s. Back then, the brands’ prototypes won the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Championship Series. Lexus has however been planning its sweet comeback with its F performance division. One of the model’s in this plan is the 2017 RC F GT3. Lexus means business this time round and is set to compete in a number of races in U.S.A., Europe and Japan.
2017 Lexus RC F GT3 Exterior
The GT3 retains most of the features of the GT500 on which it is based. It retains the automaker’s signature spindle grille. The huge air dam down on the lower part of the fascia is covered in mesh. The model has two winglets at the corners to match those of the splitter. The bonnet also has two functional air vents. To direct air over the body, the model has an array of bumps on the front fender flares. The headlights are slightly revised compared to those of the GT500. It rides on 13×18 wheels that feature a center lock as well as iron rotor brakes.
On the sides, the model features similar lines as the GT500. The lines stretch to the rear taillights from the front fenders. The model also has a huge, wide side skirt. The rear wheel arches are wider and enhance downforce at the rear. Lexus has also retained the model’s rear stationary glass as well as the chrome window accenting.
At the rear, the model retains the same taillights and decklid but adds a huge spoiler for extra downforce. The spoiler also gives the rear an intimidating look. Each corner has a large air vent while the bottom part has numerous vents. The model also has a 4-wing diffuser.
Inside, the GT3 has a minimalistic cabin that is customized for racing. If you want luxury trappings, you had better order its civilian version. The model features a racing steering wheel as well as a modified instruments cluster. It also features just a single seat for the driver to reduce the overall curb weight. The model also comes with a standard roll cage, a fire extinguisher as well as other FIA-required racing equipment.
Engine and performance
Lurking under the bonnet of the 2017 Lexus RC F GT3 is a 5.4 L, V-8 that spits out 500 horses. This presents 33 hp more than the civilian version that churns out 467 horses. Lexus is yet to reveal the units torque. The juice is sent to all wheels via a 6-speed sequential transmission tuned for racing. Lexus has not released fuel consumption ratings of the model but being a racer, expect it to have a gaping mouth.
Price and release date
Lexus has not put an official price tag on the GT3 racer. The model is currently on display at the ongoing Geneva Auto show until 19th of this month. The GT3 already participated in the GTD class at Daytona where it performed dismally where its two models finished at position 14th and 27th. Two models are set to compete in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Series in the states. The automaker via its LM Corsa racing team will enter two models in the Japanese Super GT Series GT300 class. In Europe, the automaker will compete through the Emily Frey Racing and Farnbacher Racing during the International GT Open Series.
Although the model performed dismally during its debut in racing, there is hope as its prototype won the VLN Endurance Championship at the Nürburgring Nordschleife last year.
In the racing circuits, the 2017 Lexus RC F GT3 lines up side by side to the likes of Acura NSX, Ferrari 488 GTB, Audi R8, Lamborghini Huracan, Mercedes-AMG GT and Porsche 911.