2018 Lexus LC 500h Hybrid System Detailed

Stephen Elmer
by Stephen Elmer

Lexus has revealed the hybrid version of its new LC 500 before it is officially unveiled at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show in March.

The 2018 Lexus LC 500h is powered by the brand’s new Multi Stage Hybrid System, which has a 3.5-liter V6, an electric motor, a lithium-ion battery pack and a four-speed automatic transmission mounted in the rear.

Adding the physical gears of the four-speed helps the engine rpm better align with the driver’s inputs, according to Lexus. Having a real transmission instead of a CVT, which is normally found in Toyota hybrids, will allow the LC 500h to offer the brand’s first manual shift mode in a hybrid, dubbed ‘M’ mode.

The car’s V6 engine makes 295 horsepower and 257 lb-ft of torque, which climbs to a total of 354 hp with the electric motor added in. Lexus says the car will have a sub-five second zero-to-60-mph time, putting it close to its V8-powered sibling, which will make the run to 60 mph in under 4.5 seconds.

SEE ALSO: 2018 Lexus LC 500 is a Spicy 467 HP Flagship Coupe

Lexus didn’t reveal how much the car weighs, though the brand says that new lightweight electric motors and batteries offset the added weight of the new automatic transmission. A number of weight saving touches used on the standard LC are present on the 500h, including carbon fiber door structures, aluminum front suspension towers, aluminum hood and fenders and even an available carbon fiber roof.

A long list of technology comes standard with the new LC, including Lexus Safety System +, a suite of features including all-speed adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, pre-crash warnings, automatic headlights and more.

For more details on the new LC 500h, come back to AutoGuide.com on March 1-2 as we report live from the 2016 Geneva Motor Show.

Discuss this story at our Lexus LC Forum

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  • Craig Cole Craig Cole on Feb 18, 2016

    Hmm, a four-speed transmission. I wouldn't have thought they'd use one of those.

  • DoubleCoppers DoubleCoppers on Feb 19, 2016

    So this is a watered-down version of the LC 500: max of 354 HP vs 467; 4 speed vs 10 speed; probably costs more...so how much better is the mileage, and how many decades does it take to pay back the higher initial cost? It's too bad tree-huggers don't know how to do math or science, but then, it's hard to think rationally when you function on pure emotion.