The Lexus LFA supercar – by DougDeMuro
this is a 2011 Lexus LFA it was exact super car produced by Lexus with only 500 units made for the entire world and when it was new back in 2011 the base sticker price was $375,000 now a supercar from Lexus is a little bit weird so I kind of figured the values of these would drop like a stone but today the average asking price for an LFA on Autotrader is 388 thousand dollars today we’re going to find out why I’ve borrowed this LFA from Audi bridgewater here in New Jersey where it’s owned by the owner of the dealership today I’m going to find out what makes this thing so valuable want to start by showing you around and giving you a tour of all of its cool features and it’s unusual quirks and then I’m going to take it on the road and find out how the LFA drives and at the end I’m going to give it a dug score for more of my thoughts on the LFA click the link below to go to autotrader.com slash oversteer I’ve also compiled a list of the most unusual Lexus models currently on sale now onto the quartz but first a quick overview the LFA was a halo car for Lexus intended to show people the brand was getting serious about performance and serious it was it used a 4.8 liter v10 with 553 horsepower and 350 4 pound-feet of torque mated to a sequential automatic transmission it did 0 to 60 in 3.9 seconds and it could hit a top speed of 202 miles an hour and let’s just only made 500 for the whole world and yes the LFA cost nearly $400,000 back in 2011 and yet nobody ever really talks about this car like they do Ferrari Lamborghini and other exotic cars more on that in a few minutes now on to the Cork’s I’m going to start by showing off all the weird quirks and features of the LFA s interior starting with its trunk now you may have thought that this was the LFA trunk back here but it is and it turns out the LFA is actually a hatchback an idea the glass opens in order to release the glass there’s no button on the key fob to release it there’s actually a little button inside the interior you push it and this pops open and you can open it up and once you open it up you’ll discover the most ambiguous do-it-yourself cargo cover you’ll ever see in a $400,000 car it doesn’t even cover all the cargo in this particular model underneath that cargo cover all the books and manuals there are many of them and there are some gems in these things for one thing the sheer number of books and papers and manuals and guides you get with this car absolutely unbelievable this year is the LFA introduction and orientation manual this year inside the LFA this the owner’s manual and here here’s the navigation system owner’s manual to just continue this is only about a quarter of the stuff that’s in there my personal favorite thing however is this this is a laminated pamphlet that tells you how to wash your LFA and there are some very specific restrictions for example it says do not use automatic car washes as they may scratch the vehicle a body damage the paint and they spray water when it should not be sprayed there are actually some instructions in here on where you shouldn’t spray water specifically the rear and the front on top of the hood it says do not aim the head of the nozzle with the hood grilles are grills doing so may negatively affect the engine this pamphlet goes on there’s there’s three sides to it front and back about washing your LFA this thing will add value one day at the classic car auctions in the future now speaking of the trunk it’s not exactly huge this isn’t a car I would take on really long road trips but it does come with that cool LFA bag that holds all the stuff and that would be just about the coolest thing you can carry on an airplane oh yeah I got my LFA bag yeah I got an LFA no big deal next up I swear I’m talking at the entry of the car move on to visibility and specifically this window which is the smallest window I’ve ever seen in any car bar none I don’t even know why this is a window it’s only an inch high at its highest point the funny thing is happened that it’s taken up by all these VOT numbers in the Lexus logo this is the smallest window you will ever see it does nothing to add to the car’s visibility next up I’m inside the car but talk about the seat controls it may look strange at first glance but they’re just about the most intuitive seat controls I’ve ever seen you want to see it to go back push it back you want seat to come forward pull it forward it’s actually really simple and it works really well I wish all cars had this also down here is the heated seat controls Eero one two three and there’s a little button you can press if you want to access the area behind the seats which is pretty small the next interesting thing about this car is the seat belt you’ll notice as soon as you get inside you don’t really pull it over your shoulder instead the adult part is already down here you just pull it across your waist and you buckle yourself in now one of the other things you’ll notice about this seat belt is it’s a little thicker than a normal seat so if that’s because this car is one of the first to have inflatable seat belts with an airbag in them and I’ll actually get in an accident to keep you safer just like an airbag in your steering wheel moving on to the center of the interior one of the cool things about the LFA is you get this little plaque that tells you which number your LFA is now some exotic car companies lie about how many units of each exotic car they make in order to make the car seem more exclusive than it actually is I’m not going to name names because I don’t want to get souped but the LFA has its number out of the sequence of 500 right here in the middle and any time you want to feel special you can just glance at it take a look next up we got to talk about turn signal stocks nothing like get an LFA to review and talking about turn signal stocks but the these are kind of cool they are the thinnest turn-signal songs I’ve ever seen in any modern car design that way presumably so they don’t get in the way with the shift paddles more importantly they’re really high quality they don’t move around or jiggle when they’re not supposed to they’re really stuck in there so they don’t move once you actually want to move them you touch these things all the time so it gives you a real feeling of quality in this car not speaking of the ship panels that’s another strange element in this car first off they’re on the steering column instead of the steering wheel and that is how it should be done the column they don’t move when you’re in a turn so you always know exactly where the downshift an upshift pedal is going to be but that’s not the strange part about these things the strange part is how they work when you turn the car on it’s in neutral in order to get it to go you have to actually pull the right paddle the plus pedal there’s no P R and V drive selector in the middle instead you pull the right pedal and then you’re in first now let’s say you want to get it back into neutral pull both pedals that’s pretty common in cars like this the unusual thing is what happens when you want to get it into reverse look all around the interior and you will not find the button for reverse reverse gear is over here on the left of the steering column you pull it toward you only when you’re in neutral and the car goes into reverse the other crazy thing if you’re in Reverse you want to go back into first you can’t go directly you have to go reverse neutral and then pull the right paddle and you’re back in first and that’s the strange and interesting tale of the Lexus LFA shift paddles but one of things I like most about this car is the gauge cluster now these days every exotic car has a gauge cluster that changes color and shape in size based on whatever mode you’re in but this car pioneered all that the way it works in this car is cooler than most cars even today push this little button on the steering wheel and the entire tachometer shifts over to give you some menu options now most cards solve digital but in this thing it’s both digital and an actual physical tachometer that shifts over it looks really cool when you put it in sport mode the tachometer completely changes from a regular normal one to a sporty or more aggressive one with red and white the other cool thing I noticed the LFA does when you put in sport mode it just skips a couple of the numbers at the bottom of the tachometer who no longer need to know when you’re at 1,000 or 3,000 rpm that doesn’t matter all you have to do is focus on the top part finally another cool thing the gauge cluster does is when you turn off the car everything sort of turns off one by one until the last things go away the tachometer needle and then the gear you’re in and then it’s all gone very cool seems like the future the other really cool thing about the gauge cluster in this car is that the redline is variable based on how warm the car is so when you first turn on it’s right around 6000 rpm and you can see that it just inches up little by little right now the car is fully warm into the redline is close to 9,000 RPM and it just does that over time that is a really cool idea that very few other cars do another one of my favorite features this car is these buttons in the center when you’re driving along in the stereos off these buttons don’t say anything they’re just unlabeled button and you’re thinking what are those do then you press the power button to turn on the stereo and they all come to life that might be a little bit of a gimmicks but I personally think it is a really cool party trick and I love playing with that stereo on/off button next up is the rear spoiler now it deploys when you’re driving the car it comes up pretty frequently at some speed I don’t know what but all of these cars there’s always a button that you can use to manually raise the spoiler if you just want to drive around and have everybody look at you where is that button in this car take a look around and try to find it you will not turns out Lexus hid that button all the way back here behind the driver seat you gotta really want people to stare at you if you want to put the spoiler up but if you want to push the button and the spoiler Rises right up in back I don’t know why they hid it behind the driver seat but that’s where it is the last cool interior cork is on the dashboard surrounding the Gades cluster those thin steering wheel stock you can’t put a lot of stuff on them so some of stuff you normally find on steering wheel stocks instead and these cool little switches around the gauge cluster for example on the left to find the headlights you turn them on by moving the switch on the right I’ve already showed you where the drive mode selector is and below that you have two gauge cluster brightness switch and below that you have the windshield intermittent wiper timing switch that’s kind of cool next up recovers from the cars more unusual exterior quirks starting with the fuel door you open it from the inside just like a normal fuel door it pops open but when you actually look at it you’ll notice that there is a place where you put the fuel and a place where you put the windshield washer fluid which is very unusual I’d love to get one of these outside autozone and start dumping windshield washer fluid in the fuel door and see people run out and get all freaked out that I’m destroying it next up we move under the hood now in this car is very beautiful Lexus has done a pretty good job of not covering it with too much plastic so you can really look at it and check it out maybe the most interesting thing under the hood though is the fact that you pay $400,000 one of these and the hood doesn’t stay up automatically in fact there’s not even one of those built-in hood props you just pull up and then it’s up you actually have to undo the hood prop from the top of the hood and then stick it in place yourself it’s a little out of place in a four hundred thousand dollar car another exterior quirk is the windshield wipers now you’ll notice there’s one giant windshield wiper well it turns out there’s also a lube BB windshield wiper too and they’re on the same wiper arm so they’re just both along for the ride they do a pretty good job of covering all windows oh and finally we have to talk about the keys welcome to this car you’ll notice that despite its beautiful futuristic shape covered with carbon fiber low-slung exotic look there’s a regular old keyhole in the door is also regular old keel on this side and the passenger door and you won’t know why that is it’s because this car as far advanced as it is had regular old keys maybe more surprising is the fact that the keyless entry system isn’t built into the key like it is on most normal modern cars instead there’s a key and a separate key fob I really wasn’t expecting that it’s the only part of this car that seems old-school and speaking of the keys we have to move back to the interior for a second because this car has both a real key and an engine start button so the way it works is you stick the real key into the ignition like in a normal car and only then can you press the agent Start button when you want to turn off just turn off the key like a regular car rendering the engine start button kind of an unnecessary little gimmick so the LFA is rather quirky in a cool way which is no surprise considering this is a first effort supercar from Lexus which is a brand that isn’t really known for super cars but does the LFA drive like a $400,000 car time to find out this is a little scary oh my god that sound it’s like a porno uncharred that is crazy did you hear that Wow that is one of the great sounds I’m 17 17 yet the sound is just like taking me over I can’t believe it I’ve heard these before from the outside but oh my god that sound is unbelievable that is unbelievable that’s the best dining car I’ve ever heard my life I’ve been trying this car to minute I swear this is the best dining car over her this is the kind of car that the people in this area call the cops even though we’re going like 30 just cuz they hear it so I have it in normal mode which is that it’s actually the ride it’s pretty rough even in normal here we go Oh Wow it’s so fast it is so so fast but but the transmission dulls the experience a little bit because it just doesn’t provide that immediate upshift like in modern dual clutch does however when you get into those I read you hear that sound I run a nice corner here Wow holds wine very well it’s very planted there’s no body roll at all the steering is a little more vague than you want a little less precise with every generation of these supercars things just get a little bit better and a little bit better and this being a Lexus I kind of didn’t think it would have the most precise duty and then that’s true the car is very planted to the ground like you’d expect Wow this town I just can’t man that’s just incredible I can’t believe especially at that time that’s coming out of a Lexus I looked out and like Lexus like my dad has an Rx it doesn’t sound sound quite like that the transmission is is too slow it’s just that it’s not quite that the thing is about this car it’s important to remember what you think about that at the time 2011-12 they didn’t have do a clutch to handle this much power nobody was doing that now with dual clutches and everything you start you feel like it’s a little bit behind the steering is yeah it’s not quite as precise you can just feel the front end is a little lighter than some modern cars and the steering is just a little lighter it is it’s big by any means but in a kirtan you turn it it goes to and this car’s not quite like that it’s wildly half the thing is the speed is almost the second story it is hard to the sound I just I cannot believe how it now now we’re just on like a street singing as people were going 37 miles an hour and you still hear like the faintest a little bit of that sound and you’re like I should be doing more than this man the ride is rough on rougher edit even I’m having comfort boat right now and the ride is like this is a selection you get in if you want to just go to the store you there are a lot of other like this is for that Verizon Ferrari and that those are always going to be cool but there’s something a little bit more unique about this car the question then becomes $400,000 and that’s an enormous money when it’s you know this thing about cars like this is it’s not like someone’s like oh sure they get a Camry or this they usually have 20 cars and they’re like yeah I’ll have that and so two people like that yeah it probably is look for those no it’s another name in the collection and there’s only five hundred these in the entire world you know if I saw this car like here’s an Rx this guy has no idea right this is nobody has any idea it’s kind of funny this is probably the $400,000 car that you can drive and get the least amount of attention if you want [Music] you and so that’s the Lexus LFA it’s surprisingly fast and fun to drive and most importantly it has the single best exhaust note of any car I’ve ever driven time to send in any car is worth $400,000 but this car certainly has some traits of some of the very best cars I’ve ever reviewed and yet nobody really talks about it in the same breath as Ferrari or Lamborghini they probably should and now onto the dug score starting with the weekend category specifically styling the LFA is a bold car it’s an aggressive car but it’s not a beautiful car I never hated how it looks like some people do but I never loved it still it warrants a six acceleration the elevated zero to 16 3.9 seconds which earns it an eighth handling is good but not among the very best due to its slightly vague steering it gets another 8 the cool factor is undisputed it may not be on the level of the laferrari but it’s not far off and it earns a rare 9 as for importance whether you put the LFA in a museum it’s definitely up there though not at the very top of the significance pyramid so it earns an 8 that makes the total weekend score 39 out of 50 easily trancing the only other car that’s been dug scored my Range Rover next up or the daily category starting with features the a has some cool stuff but it’s using the latest tech from the most modern cars and the key thing is a disappointment it earns a6 luxury measures how smooth and comfortable the car is the LFA has very comfortable seats but a surprisingly harsh ride earning it only a 5 quality measures reliability and materials in the LFA has few equals its interior quality is top-notch and well it’s hard to assess actual LFA reliability we know Lexus is reputation still there’s the occasional drawback like that cheap exterior keyhole and high servicing costs it earns a nine for practicality and has about five cubic feet of storage space and therefore it gets a to finally value this is the amazing car with an amazing sound but it’s hard to justify $400,000 given its aging transmission imperfect steering and controversial styling not to mention the L on the front instead of a prancing horse or a Raging Bull it earns a for bringing its total daily score to 26 just shy of the Range Rover no surprises this car wasn’t really designed for daily driving and that ring is the total Doug score 265 vastly superior to my Range Rover the best car I’ve ever dug scored but since it’s only the second car I’ve ever dug scored also the second worst we’ll get some more context for that number in the future as I review more cars [Music] Oh
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