Posts tagged with "dealership"

road trip illustration by Rita Azar

The Best Time to Purchase a Car

Six Expert Pointers on the Best Time to Purchase a Car 

Before you drive off into the sunset with your dream wheels, these tips for buying a car based on day, month, and holiday sales could offer massive savings: 

1. Do Your Car Shopping Early in the Week 

Naturally, most people tend to have more time on their hands over the weekends when browsing or shopping for a new car. But, in order to bag a better deal, you really should avoid weekends when car shopping. 

Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday are the ideal days of the week for purchasing a car. This is due to less customer traffic, which means a better chance of driving away with a better deal. 

Car dealerships are also crowded over the weekends, which results in less personalized attention. This makes price negotiation difficult.

So, stick to the early days in the week and take advantage of those limited opportunities when car dealerships are at their quietest. 

2. Shop Later in the Year (and Month) 

Buying a new car at the turn of a new year is never a good idea. Instead, stick to later months in the year such as October, November, and December. Car dealerships generally have sales quotas and sales goals they have to meet by these later months in the year. 

Shopping for a car at this time could be work to your advantage as salespeople intend to settle with their sales goals and quotas in mind.

The same goes for car shopping later in the month. Sales quotas tend to sync up with the end of each calendar month, but it’s not always exact. Try to schedule your new car shopping for the 26th, 27th, or 28th of the month.

3. Take Advantage of Holiday Sales 

This really is a no-brainer when it comes to shopping for any large purchase. Holidays periods throughout the year offer deeply discounted prices compared to other months — so take full advantage. 

Some of the best holiday periods to keep in mind include:

• Memorial Day weekend: summer is an expensive time of year to buy a car, but prices are always discounted over the Memorial Day holiday

• Black Friday: car dealerships take part in the Black Friday sale craze just like any other retailer, and you can save big

• New Year’s Eve: it may seem like an odd time, but this is one of the best days of the year for car shopping as dealerships are facing monthly, quarterly, and yearly quotas and sales goals

• Labor Day weekend: this a great time to purchase a car based on car selection and competitive pricing

Bear in mind that end-of-year holidays and sales goals are also driven by annual bonuses. Naturally, salespeople want to meet their quotas so that they can receive their commission. This makes for the best chance of securing a great deal on your dream car. 

4. Plan Your Shopping Based on Car Model Closeout

What is does it mean when a car is on closeout? Basically, this when a newer, updated model of the same car is being brought in, so older models are on closeout.

Car dealerships tend to have limited space when they receive their latest car models, and they need to move ”old” stock. This is another great time to get in a good car deal as older models need to be sold. 

If you can hold out on buying the most up-to-date car model, purchase an older model instead and save yourself thousands of dollars.

But keep in mind that many car shoppers use this same strategy. Most manufacturers release new car models in the summer but don’t wait too long to make your move as older car models can sell out very quickly. 

5. Consider the Car’s Design Cycle

Car models are constantly being updated. Some car models are also completely res-designed altogether. It may be a good time to shop for your car when the manufacturer is about to implement a completely new design cycle of the car. 

You could save serious amounts of money on the outgoing design model as the stock needs to be sold. This is a great tip if you are more of a bargain hunter, and not too focused on being a trendsetter! 

6. The Best Time of Year to Buy a Used Car

If you have your eye on a used car, October-December is the best time of year to consider buying second-hand.

These months tend to coincide with peak season and new-car buyers. This means that the number of trade-ins increases exponentially at car dealerships. Basically, you’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to second-hand car options.

The greater number of trade-ins at a dealership also makes for better prices — especially if a dealership wants to meet its end-of-year quotas. 

Get Your Auto, Art, Design, Travel and Health Fix 

Now that you know more about the best time to purchase a car, you’ll know that you really shouldn’t rush into a car purchase. Holding out pays off in the long-run. 

360 Magazine,auto,auto experts,automotive news,automotive trends,car enthusiasts,Chevrolet,Chris Walker,consumer,contest winner,custom-builds,dealership,designer,general motors,gm,HOONIGAN,hot wheels,Hot Wheels Legends Tour Virtual Stop,human interest,Minnesota 1959 Chevrolet El Camino,North Branch,pop culture,sema,trophy,Vaughn Lowery,’59 El Camino,

Chris Walker × Hot Wheels

Hot Wheels hosted the first-ever Hot Wheels Legends Tour Virtual Stop, bringing together the most unique custom-builds from around the country to compete for a chance to be turned into an iconic Hot Wheels die-cast.
 
As of late, a team of judges including Hot Wheels designers, Hoonigan auto experts and top motorsports athlete Colette Davis crowned Chris Walker from North Branch, Minnesota with his 1959 Chevrolet El Camino the winner of the first-ever Hot Wheels Legends Tour Virtual Stop. Chris and his custom build will join finalists from Legends stops around the country at SEMA Auto Show where one winner will be selected to become the next Hot Wheels 1:64 scale die-cast.

Chris built this car in his garage in just 60 days, before debuting it at the Las Vegas RatCity Ruckus Show. Nicknamed the “Hulk-Camino,” the car is made from all ’59 El Camino sheet metal and is powered by a small-block Chevrolet engine. There is a 700R4 Monster Transmission in the vehicle, with independent front suspension and coil over shocks. With American racing wheels and Mickey Thompson tires – the ‘59 El Camino is a true life-sized Hot Wheels! 

Toyota Avalon TRD

By Abigail Baldwin × Vaughn Lowery

Los Angeles traffic is a sea of homogeneity and it’s hard for your car to stand out amongst the sprawl of uninspired sedans and low-performance hatchbacks. The 2020 Toyota Avalon TRD is the perfect, unique commuter car that’s practical while also making a standout statement. The sleek, high-performance vehicle is perfect for a youthful executive with a small family in tow. It’s red accents, curved tail lights, and high-speed performance variants set it apart from the dull monotony of the commuter car market.

Design

The design of the 2020 Toyota Avalon TRD is sleek and vigorous. It’s low to the ground, and 1.8 inches longer than a Toyota Camry, giving it a sporty look. Driving the Avalon TRD makes a visual statement with a massive grill. The taillights are elegant and concave, above TRD exhaust tips, and the side-skirts feature a unique red pin-striping detail.

Toyota has continued its uses of the push-button start and keyless entry features with the Avalon TRD. The car also features a remote start by holding down on the unlock button on the key, allowing you to start your car from inside the house on a cold day. The key also includes a trunk button that gracefully opens the exceptionally spacious trunk.

The interior of the Avalon TRD is airy and luxe. The black leather features red contrast stitching to match the vibrant red seat belts, red piping accents on the seats, and the exterior pinstripe. No one has to fight for shotgun because the back seats have ample legroom, two charging stations, and a convenient center armrest that has a drop-down cup holder for everyone’s Starbucks…

The attention to detail includes the front seat door panel, which is padded leather with classic window and mirror controls. The red piping and cloth inserts make the heated front seats sporty and comfortable. The red contrast stitching is incorporated throughout the interior of the vehicle, including the steering wheel. The dashboard and gages have a simple, uncluttered look. The center console matches the sporty aspect of the car and doesn’t skimp on handy features: four USB charging stations, a Qi-compatible wireless charging station, two cup holders, and a button parking brake below the shift. A large sunroof set into the dark leather ceiling completes the luxurious interior.

Technology

The state-of-the-art technology enhances the commodious interior of the Avalon TRD. The Avalon TRD features cruise control on the steering wheel and a back-up camera with multiple angle options. The media center is a touch screen and provides voice activation Bluetooth for handsfree calling and music control. The voice control button is placed on the steering wheel for easy access. The Audio Plus system includes eight speakers for surrounding sound. The media center has an audio jack and a USB 2.0 port. The car is Apple CarPlay and Amazon Alexa compatible, as well as Scout®, GPS Link, Siri®, and HD Radio™ compatible. This model also offers an HD radio with a SiriusXM® 3-month All Access trial.

Performance and Safety

What’s most unique about the 2020 Avalon TRD is that it’s a commuter sedan with multiple performance variants. The car includes eco, normal, and sport modes. The Avalon TRD has an incredibly luxurious and sporty feel. It is an 8-speed automatic with the option of manual gear shift, using steering wheel tabs or the traditional stick shift.

The car has an almost silent start and minimal road noise. It has a responsive, natural feeling throttle and fast acceleration. The 2020 Avalon has two-piston brake calipers. The breaks are smooth with a gradual bite and require that you push halfway down to get a more dramatic break. The 2020 TRD has a lower center of gravity and stiffer springs than the previous Avalon model. It features 19-inch rims, lighter than the standard, s, and the car has updated, track-tuned suspension. Also, the special suspension accompanies a 15.8 gal fuel tank capacity, a 3.5 L V6 engine, and a horsepower of 301 hp. With a curb weight of 3,638 lbs and an MPG of 22 city/31 highway, the Avalon’s features are space and resource-efficient. The steering is a bit heavier than the previous Avalon but still exceptionally light, allowing for flat turns with a great grip.

The Avalon TRD has great visibility, with additional trunk windows on either side. The car’s protective system offers fast response times and enhanced vehicle stability control for a safe drive you can trust. It includes ten airbags: driver and front passenger Advanced Airbag System, driver and front passenger seat-mounted side airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, rear seat-mounted side airbags, and front and rear side curtain airbags. Additionally, the 2020 Avalon has front and rear energy-absorbing crumple zones, a blind-spot monitor, and rear cross-traffic alert.

Overall, the 2020 Avalon TRD is a unique, luxury vehicle with safety and security you can feel, and style you can see.

Pricing

The 2020 Avalon TRD goes for $45,000 before market adjustment, making it a competitor for Audi and BMW models. The suggested retail price or MSRP starts at $42,375. The TRD, however, is larger than the competition, with a more spacious and luxurious interior, and its own sleek, red-accented look. Additionally, the TRD comes with a memorized steering wheel position and a higher fuel economy when compared to the 2020 Nissan Maxima.

For updated pricing details and a closer look at the model, visit Toyota’s website.

Polaris Slingshot, 360 MAGAZINE, auto

POLARIS SLINGSHOT

OFFERING 350,000 REASONS
TO “TREAT YOURSELF” THIS HOLIDAY SEASON

From October Through December, Slingshot is Serving Up Holiday Bonus Cash “Treats” Ranging From $250 to $2,000 by Playing the Treat Yourself Game

This holiday season, take the time to “Treat Yourself” with the ultimate gift of self-expression – a Polaris Slingshot three-wheeled roadster. Today, Polaris Slingshot announced a holiday sales event with more than $350,000 in bonus cash offers – allowing consumers to treat themselves with all the fun, excitement, and head-turning originality only the three-wheeled Slingshot delivers.

Running until December 31, 2019, consumers can visit PolarisSlingshot.com, enter their information, and randomly receive one of 9,000 bonus cash codes ranging from $250 to $2,000. The discount code will instantly be gifted via email and redeemable at a Polaris Slingshot dealership. Consumers can also treat themselves with all-new Slingshot apparel in October and receive discounts on Slingshot factory accessories in the months of November and December.

“The holidays are a special time to not only shower gifts on family and friends, but also reward yourself with a gift that keeps on giving and makes a bold statement every time you hit the road,” said Chris Sergeant, Vice President of Polaris Slingshot. “And while you’re treating yourself behind the wheel, you can also treat family and friends riding shotgun with the unique driving experience that can only be found in a Slingshot.”

With pricing ranging from $20,999 to $30,999, each Slingshot model allows drivers to turn heads, showcase their personality, and have unlimited on-road fun behind the steering wheel of the three-wheeled roadster. Each Slingshot model, including the S, SL, SLR and Grand Touring, is powered by a 2.4L GM Ecotec engine that creates 173 horsepower and 166 ft-lbs of torque. With a vehicle weight of just over 1,700 pounds, the Slingshot delivers an unheard-of weight-to-power ratio – resulting in quick acceleration and unmatched fun. The open-air driving experience of a Slingshot combines the thrill of riding a motorcycle with the comfort of side-by-side sport bucket seats.

Owners can further enhance their ride and showcase their individuality through Slingshot Engineered Accessories or from a number of aftermarket suppliers. Slingshot factory accessories add style, functionality and ride-enhancing technology, such as the color-matched Slingshade® top, a 100-watt Rockford Fosgate® audio system, seven-inch, touch-screen Ride Command® infotainment system, wind deflectors, accent graphics, colored belt guards, color-matched rear fenders and additional side storage bags.


For more information about Slingshot, the Treat Yourself program, or to find a dealer, visit PolarisSlingshot.com.

About Polaris Slingshot
Polaris Slingshot®, a product of Polaris Industries Inc. (NYSE: PII), is a three-wheeled motorcycle that delivers a ride like nothing else you’ve ever experienced. The Slingshot is powered by a 2.4-liter engine with a five-speed manual transmission and comes in a variety of models that will leave you grinning from ear-to-ear. To learn more, visit www.PolarisSlingshot.com.

Slingshot® is a three-wheeled motorcycle. It is not an automobile and does not meet automotive safety standards. Drivers should always wear helmets and seat belts. Three wheeled vehicles may handle differently than other vehicles, especially in wet conditions. Always wear a DOT approved full face helmet and fasten seat belts. Driver may need a valid motorcycle endorsement. Rider licensing requirements vary by state. Check your state’s requirements before driving. Don’t drink and drive. Unless noted, trademarks are the property of Polaris Industries Inc. © Polaris Industries Inc.

ECOTEC® is a registered trademark of General Motors LLC

ROCKFORD FOSGATE® is a registered trademark of Rockford Corporation.

Key to Auto Dealer Satisfaction

As auto dealers confront a rapidly changing consumer landscape in which many customers now apply for credit online before visiting a dealership, the experienced and empowered credit and sales personnel at captive and non-captive lenders are becoming critical elements in the success of an automotive finance operation. According to the J.D. Power 2019 U.S. Dealer Financing Satisfaction Study,SM the ability to answer dealer questions correctly the first time, facilitate electronic transactions and resolve contracts quickly is key to helping dealers successfully navigate the changing marketplace.

“Dealers are able to put together more attractive, seamless transactions for their customers when they are able to work in lock-step with lenders they trust to deliver fast, accurate and competitive products,” said Jim Houston, Senior Director, Automotive Finance Intelligence at J.D. Power. “That relationship becomes more important as vehicle sales slow and more buyers may seek to secure financing outside of the dealership. Credit analysts and sales personnel perform some of the most important functions for dealers looking to match customers purchase with the right financial transaction. When these teams are available, knowledgeable and empowered, they improve dealer satisfaction and enhance the lender’s value proposition.”

The 2019 U.S. Dealer Financing Satisfaction Study is based on 16,870 retail credit and 2,117 floor plan provider evaluations from dealer personnel, a 17% increase in response rate from the 2018 study. The study was fielded in April-May 2019, measuring auto dealer satisfaction in three segments of lenders: non-captive, captive mass market and floor planning. The non-captive analysis evaluates the dealer/lender relationship across three factors: relationship; provider offerings; and application/approval process. In the captive segment, four factors are evaluated: relationship; provider offerings; application/approval process; and lease return. Three factors are measured in the floor planning segment: relationship; portfolio management; and provider credit line.

Can air extend an EV’s range?

The energy efficiency of electric vehicles (EVs) can be improved by 3 to 7% with proper tire inflation, according to a recent ExxonMobil study.

The first-of-its-kind study followed three identical EVs, each with different tire air-loss rates, as they each traveled 5,400 miles crisscrossing all sorts of environments in the United States, including city streets, small towns and rural roads, for six months.

The results showed that properly inflated tires enhanced EV energy efficiency by as much as 7% to extend vehicle battery range.

What if there were a way to increase an electric vehicle’s (EV’s) energy efficiency by 3 to 7 percent? A recent ExxonMobil study has revealed that proper tire inflation can do just that.

Back in 2018, the company embarked on a first-of-its-kind study that tracked EVs to understand the impact tire inflation pressure has on vehicle range. As the inventor of halobutyl rubber, the technological wonder that helps keep tires properly inflated, ExxonMobil wanted to take a hard look at the challenges EVs encounter.

The study followed three identical EVs, each with different air-loss rates. Each car traveled 5,400 miles, crisscrossing all sort of environments, including city streets and remote roads, for six months.

The results? In a nutshell, choose a tire that will stay better inflated over time. It will not only extend the life of the tire, but also the overall energy efficiency.

Learn more about our study in this video

ROUSH PERFORMANCE LAUNCHES SUPERCHARGED 2019 F-150 SC

The new off-road ready 2019 ROUSH F-150 SC features a ROUSHcharged 5.0L Ti-VCT V8 producing 650 horsepower and is now available for purchase or custom order at all ROUSH authorized Ford Dealers.

ROUSH Performance is proud to unveil our most advanced off-road performance truck to date with the 2019 ROUSH F-150 SC. Featuring the ROUSH TVS R2650 Supercharger and an advanced ROUSH/Fox 2.0 off-road suspension, the 2019 F-150 SC provides an unparalleled driving experience. Like all ROUSH vehicles, all of this power and performance is backed with a 3-year/36,000-mile limited warranty.

The 2019 ROUSH F-150 SC produces a potent 650 horsepower and 610 pound-feet of torque from the combination of the ROUSH TVS R2650 Supercharger system and Ford’s 5.0-liter Ti-VCT V8. This pairing offers an increase of 255 horsepower and 210 foot-pounds of torque over stock. ROUSH ensures this engine sounds as good as it performs with its dual tip performance exhaust system.

As an optional upgrade, ROUSH offers the F-150 SC with its premium Active Exhaust system. Upgraded for the 2019 model year, the Active Exhaust system uses electronic valve technology to allow drivers to choose between touring, sport, wide-open and custom modes via a mobile app or console mounted switch. The ROUSH Active Exhaust mobile application enables users to have full control over their truck’s sound based on rpm, vehicle speed, and accelerator position.

The F-150 SC gains additional suspension travel and two inches of front leveling over stock from a ROUSH/Fox 2.0 suspension upgrade. The suspension upgrade is designed to provide excellent off-road performance without compromising on-road handling, and preserves factory capacity for both payload and towing. The F-150 SC rolls on 20-inch black ROUSH wheels wrapped in General Grabber ATX LT305/55R20 Tires offering stability and confidence on rough terrain while remaining tractable on the highway.

“The 2019 ROUSH F-150 SC is truly an all-purpose truck,” said Jack Roush Jr. ”Whether you’re cruising down a highway or blasting across a desert trail, this vehicle pulls through with legendary ROUSH performance, style, and refinement.”

ROUSH offers a host of aesthetic improvements on the F-150 SC to ensure a unique, aggressive look on and off the road. ROUSH combines a signature front grille with accent lighting, fender flares with accent lighting, a front bumper cover and a square “R” hitch cover. A signature ROUSH graphics package with optional customization provides unmistakable custom style. An optional ROUSH Soft Tonneau Cover by ExTang is also available. Interior modifications include molded floor liners by WeatherTech, a secure console vault and a serialized console badge. Optional leather seating upgrades and an optional off-road utility kit are also available. The ROUSH F-150 SC pricing begins at $24,900 over factory MSRP.

Visit www.ROUSHperformance.com to build your F-150 SC and find a ROUSH dealership near you.

About ROUSH Performance
ROUSH Performance was founded in 1995 by motorsports legend Jack Roush, the winningest name in racing. Combining performance engineering with entrepreneurship, ROUSH began selling designs he had created for his own team to the wider world of motorsports. Based out of Plymouth Township, Michigan, ROUSH Performance, a division of Roush Enterprises, designs, engineers and manufactures completely assembled pre-titled vehicles, aftermarket performance parts, and superchargers for the global performance enthusiast market. For more on ROUSH please visit www.ROUSHperformance.comwww.ROUSHperformance.com or call 800.59.ROUSH.

ECD AUTO

E.C.D. Automotive Design, known for their prestigious, high-end luxury vehicles, recently completed an aggressive LS3-powered custom Defender 110 in a stunning Crystal Covelline Blue finish.

Project Azure was designed to embody the iconic, yet subtle look of the British classic, but with something unique to the client. Pictures do no justice for the stunning Crystal Covelline Blue paint. Underneath the hood is an aggressive 6.2L LS3 V8 engine paired with upgraded headers and a full Borla Performance exhaust system for more power and an ultra-fierce growl. A set of 18” black Kahn Defend 1983 wheels pull together the clean exterior of this custom Defender 110.

The interior of Project Azure looks quite posh with Cadence Buckwheat and Black leather throughout. Occupants ride comfortably in the hand-trimmed custom seats. There are plenty of modern luxuries as well, such as a Sony infotainment system, a full JL Audio sound system, in-vehicle WiFi, wireless charging, and rear air-conditioning controls for all passengers.

If Project Azure is a preview of what’s to come from E.C.D. Automotive Design in 2019, then it’s a safe bet that they will continue to dominate the custom vehicle industry.

Safety Score

Autoliv, Inc. (NYSE: ALV and SSE: ALIVsdb), the worldwide leader in automotive safety systems, today introduced Safety Score by Autoliv, a smartphone application with the goal to make people of all ages become safer drivers.

Once downloaded and when active, Safety Score monitors real-time driver behaviors and compares it against Autoliv’s proprietary data algorithms and known causes of accidents and provides the user with a personalized 3-digit safe driver score. The higher the score the more safe-driving behaviors the driver exhibited over an array of data points including turning, acceleration, braking, speed and distractions. The app also collects and compares data on weather, type of roads driven on, time of day and trip duration.

“Today, nearly 1.4 million people die in traffic fatalities every year and that number is expected to increase,” said Cecilia Sunnevång, Ph.D., Autoliv Vice President of Research. “Autoliv has been collecting, studying and acting on accident data for 65 years and we believe the road to saving more lives includes improving driver behavior. Safety Score, when used regularly provides a unique understanding of an individual’s safe-driving patterns and provides a framework for coaching and improving safe-driving habits.”

Christoffer Malm, Autoliv Director of Digital and Mobility, added that having a personalized safety score based on individual driving behavior could also be used by ride-hailing, taxi, limousine and other fleet and professional driving companies to provide an objective picture of a user’s safe-driving habits and provide a platform for evaluating and improving driving behavior. Additionally, a personalized Safety Score based on individual driving behavior could also be used to reduce insurance costs.

“Many usage-based insurance programs collect vehicle data and score based on the performance of a vehicle, which often has multiple drivers, so driving behavior reported back to the insurance company isn’t personalized,” he said. “Safety Score assesses individual driving behavior – regardless of the vehicle driven – and provides a personalized score that could be used to determine an individual’s safe-driving behavior. The individual could then share this information with the insurance company to reduce costs.”

Learn more

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2019 Lexus LC500, LC500h

By Shin Takei

For those of us lucky enough to experience driving the Lexus LFA we lamented the fact that it was a limited production (500) high dollar super car (MSRP $375K USD) produced from 2011 to 2012. Needless to say, it remains an icon and a collector car. For most driving enthusiasts, the word exciting, sexy, exhilarating, thrilling was never associated with Lexus. In fact, after the LFA, nothing from Lexus could be labelled exciting, until now. Akio Toyoda, President of Toyota Motor Corporation and Chief Branding Officer of Lexus heard the automotive journalist’s call and vowed that Lexus will never be associated with those words. Being an avid car enthusiast and master driver who honed his skills at Nurburgring, Mr. Toyoda wanted Lexus to be emotional and exciting vehicles to drive.

As part of the Lexus Flagship lineup which consists of the LS500 and LX570, the LC500 and LC500h, the Flagship Sports Coupe is part of the Global Architecture-Luxury platform that features a low center of gravity, aerodynamics and high- speed stability which is shared by the LS sedan. The styling of the LC Flagship coupe is aggressive starting with the prominent spindle grille and wide flared out hip and low frontal area due to a multi-link front suspension system. The ultra-compact LED 3-projector headlamps are flanked by the L-shaped daytime running lights. An optional carbon fiber roof panel is available and at the rear the spindle profile is carried out. A set of optional 21” black wheels enhance the sporting look. The coupe looks purposeful and its aggressive looks generated a few stares wherever we drove it. Liberal use of light weight high strength steel, aluminum and CFRP (carbon fiber reinforced plastic) contribute to the stiffest unibody ever built by Lexus and with much of the drivetrain behind the front axle a 52:48 weight distribution was achieved resulting in the driver’s hip and heel points to be lowered in the cockpit.

The LC500 is powered by a naturally aspirated 5.0 liters V8 with 471 HP @7,100rpm and 398 lb-ft of torque @4,800rpm. The DOHC 32 valve Dual VVT-iE (Variable Valve Timing with Intelligence) engine is hooked up to a 10-speed Sport Direct Shift automatic with paddle shift and manual mode. 0-60mph arrives in less than 4.5 seconds. To increase the exhaust sound, Active Exhaust channels the sound to the firewall through a special resonance tube. The engine switches to the Atkinson cycle for efficiency and to he Otto cycle for performance. The LC500h features Lexus Hybrid Synergy Drive and is mated to an Atkinson cycle 3.5 Liter gasoline engine and allows for operating the vehicle up to 87 mph without the gas engine. To enhance the sports driving experience, the owner can opt for the Lexus Dynamic Handling system (LDH) which coordinates EPS (electric power steering with Variable Gear Ratio Steering (VGRS) and Active Rear Steering (ARS).

The interior of the coupe was designed to maximize the driving experience by positioning the driver low and close to the center of gravity to transmit road feel more directly. The seats feature bolsters in the shoulder area and the optional sports seats provide more grip around the driver during hard cornering. The Alcantara door panels with drape-surfaces are similar to the flowing exterior lines. The TFT display and the Lexus Multi-Media display integrates the Remote Touch Interface touchpad control for Navigation, Audio and Connectivity. As if the standard 12 speaker Pioneer surround sound system isn’t enough, there’s the optional Mark Levinson 13 speaker sound system to blow your ears away.

So how does this all work out? Quite well, thank you. The coupe is easy to drive, and in true GT car fashion, comfortable and relaxing but turning the Drive Mode Selector switch to Sport+ brings out the true character of this coupe. Faster shifting, enhanced engine performance and increased engine sound contribute to an exciting driving experience. There’s a lot of Japanese culture incorporated in the car. The chrome strip next to the rear glass panel is not unlike a samurai sword and words like Kizashi (a sign of great things to come) and Omotenashi (hospitality) are integrated throughout the car.

There is a limited edition of 100 Lexus LC500 Inspiration Series that are painted in Flair Yellow, which does draw your attention and a new pigment called Structural Blue was formulated taking characteristics from butterfly wings tropical fish and precious stones. Both are brilliant and intense and unique in enhancing the profile of the car but you better hurry to get one.

The Lexus LC500 is a true GT (Grand Touring) car. It is quick, handles well and finally has feeling and excitement. Yet it is comfortable enough to drive it for an evening out. However, we feel they’ve left a little wiggle room for more performance and believe a LC500 F-Sport is coming soon that would satisfy the hardcore sports car enthusiasts. Until then, the Lexus LC500 and LC500h will be more than adequate for most of us who won’t be driving it to the limit.

360 magazine, Lexus, lc500, lc500h, Vaughn Lowery, shin takei

360 magazine, Lexus, lc500, lc500h, Vaughn Lowery, shin takei

360 magazine, Lexus, lc500, lc500h, Vaughn Lowery, shin takei

360 magazine, Lexus, lc500, lc500h, Vaughn Lowery, shin takei