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The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
You probably know what it means to play “chicken,” but the risks associated with the reckless schoolyard game take a more serious tone when cars are involved. That said, it’s a blast to watch.
Toyota is extremely proud of its new GT 86, and out in Japan, its motorsports partner Gazoo Racing has built a pair of GT 86s to compete in the famous Nürburgring 24 Hours race.
The race will take place from May 17th to the 20th and Gazoo Racing will also be fielding a Lexus LFA in the competition. Before one of the GT 86s compete in the Nürburgring race, however, it will make its way to the Japanese Rally Championship. Both custom Gazoo Racing Toyota GT 86s will be on display at the upcoming Goodwood Festival of Speed in the UK from June 29th to July 1st.
It appears that the GT 86s will have around 200-hp and will be equipped with a six-speed manual for the race. We’re excited to see how well it does during the grueling endurance classic.
Watch a video of the Gazoo Racing Toyota GT 86 below
After driving an F1 car in competition, it would be hard not to have an unrealistic set of expectations for any car after that. So you would think that an F1 driver could never sit in a production car and still become enthralled with its performance capabilities. Well, according to Alex Wurz, the former F1 driver, the Lexus LFA is a rocket ship he would take home any day of the week.
Lexus is still eager to prove that it is fully capable of producing a super sports car that can perform with the likes of Ferrari and Lamborghini. And with the LFA still sitting in the fifth position for fastest laptime around the famed Nürburgring, above both Lamborghini and Ferrari, the car has shown the world its true potential.
Watch the video below of Toyota Racing’s Alexander Wurz take the LFA out for some hot laps on the Estoril circuit in Portugal. Its interesting to listen to his take on the car, and how it handles.
Alex calls the car a “rocket ship”, and by the looks of the LFA in the video, we wouldn’t disagree.
GALLERY: Lexus LFA Nurburgring Edition
As popular as drifting has become in America, the sport’s home will forever be in Japan and a quick demo out at the 2012 Tokyo Auto Salon gave us a reminder why.
While we have plenty of fun listening to V8-powered Ford Mustangs and Chevy Camaros go at it sideways, this year’s TAS played host to a Toyota GT 86 doing tandem with an old school AE86, only to be outdone by a Lexus LFA Roadster.
And as cool as it was to see the new Toyota GT 86 going sideways alongside its classic predecessor, what’s even more interesting is the fact that the LFA Roadster isn’t even supposed to go on sale until 2014, so how did someone get their hands on one? Either it’s a pre-production model or someone decided to chop the roof on theirs themselves. But leave it to D1 to put on yet another demo to whet everyone’s appetite for drifting, despite how controversial the series is out in Japan.
Check out the video after the break with various cars putting on a drifting demo.
Details are light right now, but the Tokyo Edition LFA will allow us to see the LFA’s carbon fiber skin on the roof and the wing. Even though extensive details about the Tokyo Edition LFA have not yet been released, somehow the pricing premium was – the model is rumored to be another $54,445 or so more than a standard LFA. For that premium, we better hope it’s more than just a lack of paint the Tokyo Edition LFA will be sporting.
Having had the opportunity to experience Lexus‘ LFA firsthand, we can attest to its freakish performance and elegant handling all wrapped in a luxurious package. While its price tag has drawn criticism, it’s certainly not unheard of in the exotic segment and so EVO Magazine decided to compare (very expensive) apples to apples, pitting the Japanese supercar against Ferrari‘s 599 GTO – both vehicles with MSRPs just barely under the $400,000 mark. The result may be surprising to some, with EVO giving their nod to the LFA despite the 599 GTO’s quicker 0-60 time and higher top speed.
It goes without saying that no true auto enthusiast should judge a car simply by its acceleration and top speed, but the 599 GTO clocked a 0-60 time in just 3.8 seconds while the LFA was a solid few ticks behind at 4.2. The LFA’s top speed was recorded at 179-mph while the GTO easily outpaced it at 193-mph. But the article goes way beyond that, with EVO coming to the conclusion that Lexus now has a vehicle that tops Italy’s finest.
“What marks out the LFA for particular praise is its bravery and originality;” says EVO, “for Lexus to create such a car from scratch, with no evolutionary engineering or existing bias from which to work, is a remarkable achievement. Innovative, extreme, immaculately executed and exquisite to drive, it’s the greatest high-performance car Japan has ever produced.”
“Get hung up on the badge and you’ll be blind to its magic. Revel in its rarity, its rare abilities and the fact we’re unlikely to see its like again and you’ll understand why the LFA is one of the greats, and why this test ends with three unexpected, hard-won and thoroughly deserved words: Lexus beats Ferrari.”
Check out a video of EVO Magazine comparing the two cars after the jump.
[Source: Lexus Enthusiast]
Rumors are brewing that the Lexus LF-A Roadster Concept we saw debut back in 2008 may head to production, debuting in 2014. Reports are coming in that once the first batch of 500 LFAs are completed, there will be a one-year break before the LFA Roadster becomes available, possibly in mid-2014.
It would appear that the production LFA Roadster will have the same 4.8L V10 powerplant that the LFA currently has, pushing 560-hp and 354 lb-ft of torque. The original concept from 2008 did feature a speed adaptive rear wing. It will be interesting to see if the LFA sales pick up enough for Lexus to warrant a convertible variant and whether or not there are enough consumers to be interested in purchasing one.
GALLERY: Lexus LF-A Roadster
[Source: GT Spirit]
Rumors surfaced late last month that Toyota Motorsport in Germany was developing a Le Mans GT race car based on the Lexus LFA. Now photos have surfaced of what is believed to be the upcoming Lexus LFA GTE racer that will be a future competitor in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. There are of course no concrete details behind the LFA GTE and what it will be packing in order to compete with the likes of Ferrari and Porsche.
The LFA has had some success on the track, taking a class win in a class for most stock vehicles at the 2010 Nurburgring 24 Hours. It really remains to be seen if the LFA will be a potent platform for race teams worldwide, but a successful entry into the 24 Hours of Le Mans will go a long way.
GALLERY: 2012 Lexus LFA GTE
The Lexus LFA may sport one of the highest price tags in the exotic car market, but until now it’s been missing an all-important Nurburgring lap time.
Lexus has never released an official time for the car, but leading up to this past weekend’s 24 Hours of Nurburgring, the Toyota luxury arm took a Nurburgring Edition LFA for an exhibition hot lap. Even though it wasn’t classified as a full-on attempt, Gazoo Racing driver Akira Iida put in an impressive 7:22.85 in the LFA, putting it in 10th place overall on the fastest production vehicle list.
With that time being three seconds off the Corvette ZR1, which costs just a third of the price, even Lexus fanboys aren’t thumping their chests. That may soon change, however, with reports that there are plans for an official run in the future.
Was Iida going balls-to-the-wall, or was he sand bagging? Time will tell.
German driver Andre Lotterer will be racing one of two Lexus LFAs that will compete in this weekend’s race, marking the fourth consecutive year that the Japanese supercar is competing in the Nurburgring 24 Hours endurance race.
Lotterer just won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the number 2 Audi R18 TDI and has also successfully driven for Toyota and Lexus in the Japanese Formula Nippon and Super GT Champtionship. He will be racing in the number 119 car with Juichi Wakisaka and Takayuki Kinoshita.
The body and chassis of the LFA race cars are almost completely stock putting them at a significant weight disadvantage to many of the other race cars competing. However, Lexus is hoping to take a class victory as well as a top-10 overall position in the race. The LFA finished top in its class last year, but the two previous years it didn’t finish the race.
The Nurburgring 24 Hours endurance race starts on June 25th.
[Source: Motor Authority]
Those that have been fortunate enough to witness the Lexus LFA’s brilliance first hand know just how potent and magnificent of a machine it is. Even though some will debate whether or not it’s worth the price tag, we’re pretty confident owners are more than satisfied with their purchase.
Be that as it may, Lexus is reportedly already working on a new version of the car, code named LFA II. While a successor is possible, the car is rumored to actually be a higher performance version of the wild Japanese exotic.
No details are available, but you can be sure that if Lexus is planning an even more capable LFA, it’s sure to come with an even steeper price tag.
GALLERY: Lexus LFA Nurburgring Edition
[Source: Best Car via Autoblog]
To help ensure the company’s new supercar doesn’t show up as tomorrow’s news after being wrapped around a pole, Lexus has created the Lexus LFA Driver Development school to get educated on how to control their amazing new machine.
In this video that spotlights the Lexus LFA Driver Development School, several LFAs are seen trekking along at Infineon Raceway at Sonoma, California. Scott Pruett, Lexus’ official LFA promotion driver, can be seen speaking about the LFA. But what really caught our attention is Tony Brakohiapa, a Formula Drift driver and instructor at Infineon Raceway, who takes the LFA drifting. Even though we’ve been fortunate enough to get behind the wheel of the LFA and take it well past 160-mph, the thought of going sideways never really occurred to us. Then again, we’re not paid to destroy tires for a living.
Check out the video after the break.
[Source: Wrecked Magazine]
Undeniably those that are able to afford the limited quantity Lexus LFA, probably have some expendable income to customize their Japanese supercar. Lexus North America has been making a strong push in marketing the LFA to the affluent and now they have a boost thanks to CEC, with their announcement of three different tuning packages available to LFA Nurburgring edition owners.
CEC has high hopes for their LFA tuning packages, hoping to build “the most expensive and rarest of all the LFA supercars that Lexus will manufacturer and sell worldwide,” according to Sherif Yassa, Vice President of CEC.
The focus of the tuning packages will mainly be on the aesthetic, which is a safe bet given how finely tuned the LFA’s powerplant is. Lexus has reported to us that the Nurburgring edition LFA will have 10-hp more than the standard LFA thanks to further development by Lexus’ engineers.
There are no images of the package available yet, but to get a better look at CEC’s light weight forged wheels on the LFA, hit the link below.
Toyota recently celebrated its 10th anniversary of the Toyota Motorsports Festival, and what better way to show off what Toyota Motorsports is all about than to assemble a team of flagship Lexus LFA supercars in various colors and taking them all out to the track at Fuji Speedway?
That’s exactly what Toyota did, and we’re fortunate enough to spy a video of the action. We’re pretty jealous.
One more noteworthy appearance in the video is Lexus’ IS-F Race Car Concept acting as the safety vehicle on the track.
Video available after the jump:
Gazoo Racing is fielding a pair of Lexus LFAs this weekend at the famed 24 Hours of Nürburgring race. These V10 racecars are out to prove a point; the Lexus LFA is a true contender on and off the track and a genuine entry in the supercar world.
Despite unsuccessful entries in the past with the LFA at Nürburgring, Gazoo Racing is paving the way during the qualifying sessions. The two cars, #50 and #51, are heading their class after the second round of qualifying. The #50 car set a time of 8:50.034 and will be driven in the race by Kinoshita, Iida, Wakisaka and Ohshima. The #51 car, set to be driven by Hahne, Krumbach and Lotterer, is in second with an 8:53.156. Third place came in fashionably late with a 9:11.909 effort from the Aston Martin V12 Vantage driven by Porritt, Meaden, Mathai and Cate.
It looks like all the testing sessions has really paid off for the Gazoo Racing team. We’ll be keeping our eyes out this weekend on how well the LFAs will maintain their status at one of the most famous race in the entire world.
[Source: Gazoo Racing]
GALLERY: Gazoo Racing Lexus LFAs