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The 2024 Lexus RC 350 F-Sport: The Forgotten Luxury Sports Coupe

by | March 22, 2024

Given Akio Toyoda’s continued push to make the automaker more sporting, its benign neglect of the RC 350 remains a mystery.

When was the last time you even saw a Lexus RC 350?

How recently has any attention been paid by corporate to the Lexus RC 350? Here’s all that you need to know: it comes with a CD player, so that you can still enjoy your En Vogue CDs.

The 2024 Lexus RC 350 F-Sport sports coupe competes in a rather rarified class, one populated by few vehicles, all of them German. Those would be the Audi A5, BMW 4 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe. Yet as fetching and beautifully built as the 2024 Lexus RC 350 F-Sport proves to be, its couture is classic, not contemporary, wearing lines that have been with us for nearly a decade. Message to Lexus: you’re no longer it, Miss Thing. Not that it’s bad looking, mind you. Its lines are classic enough to have survived with its freshness intact, even if it is a bit familiar. But you can’t help thinking that Lexus keeps it in production until they recoup costs, as this vehicle sold a mere 1,752 units last year, compared to Audi’s 23,777 A5/S5 coupes. And both BMW and Mercedes-Benz sold even more. But rarity has its privilege; you won’t see yourself coming and going.


Look at the uper left corner; that’s a CD player.

As mentioned, timeless defines its cabin, despite its 8-inch or optional 10.3-inch infotainment touchscreen. Yet Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Amazon Alexa are standard. And a Wi-Fi hotspot is optional, as is a 17-speaker Mark Levinson audio system.

As you might expect, despite the presence of a rear seat, this is a vehicle best meant for two. Consider the rear seat a padded parcel shelf, as its legroom is more theoretical than practical. Besides, it augments the Lilliputian 10.4 cubic-foot trunk.

That said, front seat occupants are treated well, with opulent leather seats that prove supportive, comfortable and not-overly aggressive in their bolstering. Fit and finish are impressive, reminding you of why you purchased a Lexus. That remains true once you floor the throttle; the cabin remains seriously silent.


These seats are every bit as comfy and supportive as they look.

As is the case with too many cars with sporting intentions, the rear-wheel-drive Lexus RC 350 F-Sport’s standard engine is aturbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and 8-speed automatic transmission. Rated at 241 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, this powertrain can be found in the RC 300. If you care, it returns EPA-rated at 21 mpg city and 31 mpg highway. That drops to 20 mpg city and 28 mpg highway if you opt for all-wheel drive.

Pay a little bit more and indulge yourself with the RC 350’s 3.5-liter V6 that produces 311-horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, a six-speed automatic and all-wheel drive. Given the V6’s extra muscle, its EPA rating of 19 mpg city and 26 mpg highway aren’t terrible. AT the top of the pyramid is the RC F, with its 5.0-liter V8 generating 472 horsepower and diminishing 0-60 mph times to 4.2 seconds from the V6’s 6-second-plus run.


This is a cruiser, not a bruiser, so boy racers beware.

It’s still a great-looking coupe

The 2024 Lexus RC 350 F-Sport we tested is a prototypical Lexus. It doesn’t have the crisp, aggressive performance you would anticipate from a sports coupe, nor is it the fastest in its class. This is a grand tourer, one equally focused on comfort and speed. Its nature is very refined, something its rivals sacrifice. It is truly a gentleman’s automobile.

If getting the most speed for your money is important, this is not your car. Rather, if enjoying a skillful blend of luxury and rapidity is your preference, this is your ride.

And given the crazy prices being charged these days, asking prices seem reasonable. Prices start at $45,920, including destination charge for the RC 300, with our RC 350 F-Sport starting at a little over $52,000.

Still, this car seems to be living on borrowed time, as a replacement must be coming.

“We understand that there’s probably the need to even be more aggressive in that arena,” said Vinay Shahani, Vice President of Lexus Marketing, late last year. “So stay tuned for more.”

Still, one wonders why it has taken so long, and why Lexus allowed this vehicle’s competitiveness to fall behind its competitors.


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