Motoring and Property Editor
1:00 AM 9th September 2023
Lexus Life – My Scottish Adventure
The call came from the good people at Lexus to join them on the bonny, bonny banks of Loch Lomond for a drive day. Although a bit of a trek from home, previous experience suggested there would be some interesting and relatively traffic free roads close by.
Cameron House was the backdrop for the event, and if you fancy treating yourself, I can strongly recommend it as a place to stay. The setting is magnificent, the food excellent and the rooms quite special. There is also the opportunity to have a ride on their seaplane, which I watched take off and land numerous times on the loch.
Back down to earth, and being a sucker for a convertible car, my first drive was in the LC 500 Cabrio. The 5.0-litre V8 engine packs a punch and should you be that way inclined, it can propel the car from rest to 60mph in less than five seconds. Find yourself on a German autobahn or deserted runway, the top speed is a smidgen under 170mph.
Once clear of the main A82, choked with summer holiday traffic, it was time to lower the roof and put the pedal to the metal, all the while of course remaining within the UK’s national speed limit. The folding four-layer soft top retracts seamlessly at the push of a button and as I found out, raises quite smartly too as I got caught in a short, sharp, Scottish shower.
Roof up, refinement is up with the best luxurious coupe, but even when lowered, buffeting is minimal and with a powerful heater and heated seats, there is no excuse for not to drop the roof as long as it’s not raining.
Knowing the area reasonably well, I found some challenging, if somewhat narrow roads to put the LC 500 properly through its paces. I would suggest the ride and handling is set up more with comfort in mind, yet should you be in the mood, the luxurious Lexus should manage of keep up with almost anything when the road turns twisty.
The roads flooded briefly, yet traction was good and at no time did I feel in anyway concerned about the car’s handling. There was of course some flickering from the traction control light, the system clearly doing a good job of putting the power down.
Aiding smooth progress was the ten-speed automatic gearbox, which changes ratios almost imperceptibly. You can take control should you so wish by using the large aluminium paddles mounted on the steering column. I saw no need.
The LC 500 is well equipped, with an excellent sound system, a premium navigation system and powerful LED headlights amongst the highlights. Comfort is of the first order too, with fully adjustable electric seats, covered in smooth leather.
Toyota and Lexus build quality is always top drawer, and the LC 500 has that hewn from stone feel and with a little care, should last forever.
So far is has all been very positive, but the barrier to entry is surely the list price, comfortably over £100,000. And then there’s the fuel economy, quoted at 24.1mpg on the WLTP combined cycle. Have a little fun as I did, as expect mid-teens at best.
However, for those with the wherewithal, and with long-term ownership in mind, there is much to recommend, not least the svelte looks, the usable performance and luxurious interior. Cars like this will surely disappear any day now as the UK rushes towards full electrification, so buy now, enjoy and keep indefinintely.
• Lexus LC 500 Convertible
• Price: £113,885
• Graphite Black
• 457bhp 5.0-litre V8 engine
• 0-62mph in 5 seconds
• Top speed 168mph
• Combined economy 24.1mpg
• Emissions 275g/km CO2
• Insurance group 50E