2012 Lexus LFA

February 22, 2012 by staff 

2012 Lexus LFA, Back in June 2010, right in the middle of the Toyota unintended acceleration scare, Lexus LFA test driver Hiromu Naruse died when his LF-A Nürburgring ploughed into a 3-series carrying BMW engineers on the 410, one of the public roads outside the Nürburgring.

Toyota sources say Naruse-san didn’t appear to have been wearing his seatbelt and appeared to have been driving on the incorrect side of the road and that, because it was an early development hack, safety systems such as the airbags and so on weren’t operational.

It was a terrible tragedy compounded by terrible timing; it would have been understandable if Toyota had swept this entire project under the carpet. Yet a year later we’re back at the Nurburgring Nordscheife, about to drive the LF-A Nurburgring on the track that gave it its name.

The standard LF-A is an incredible car with some incredible packaging – its front/mid-engined, naturally aspirated V10 that drives the rear wheels through a transaxle. There’s also a carbon monotub, carbon roof, bonnet and spoiler, plus glassfibre side panels (the planned carbon panels didn’t lend themselves to the required Lexus paint finish, so a compromise was reached) while the radiators are located behind the rear wheels and ancillaries like the battery and washer bottle are carefully packaged within the wheelbase to help handling – or, as Toyota puts it, to minimise the moment of inertia.

Only 500 LF-As will be built at a price of around £346,000, but of that 500 a further 50 will be the Nurburgring special edition. It costs – gulp – £411,752.

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