running pillow. Truly, it looks like a running pillow. Toyota said the
design was chosen among proposals from its studios all over the world,
including the headquarters (think of IS200), the California-based CALTY
(whose track record includes the old SC and new Celica) and Brussels
pretty Yaris). Of course, the first to be ruled out was those who
the ugly IS200. Then, surprisingly, the management guys chose the
from Brussels. In sketches it did look good, but after adaptation to
- reducing the size of wheels, increasing the windscreen incline angle,
raising the level of bonnet and boot lid - the beautiful profile was
and became a fat pillow. It is just another poor design that looks good
in concept stage but completely different in production form. It is
another example that we car lovers foresaw a problem but the management
old men did not. Another problem is I cannot find a single styling
delivering a sense of elegance or prestige. They should have chosen
point is clearer if you compare the new SC with the old one. While the
former looks odd, the latter is still handsome after 9 years (born
even though without much restyle. The same feeling extends to interior.
Better material used aside, the new styling is quite inconsistent -
you see a straight-and-cool center console housing a sound system with
brush alloy face, sometimes you see some light-color wood decorated in
the dashboard in an American-traditional shape, at the same time you
3 cute dials as found in some funny cars. Too much character means no
subjective sense is cruel to Lexus, as always, in objective sense it is
hard to fault. The new car has a much sportier dimension than the old
- a massive 384 mm shorter, 24 mm wider, same height and have a
71 mm shorter. The positive outcome is much improved driver appeal,
thanks to the all-double-wishbones suspensions donated by GS sedan. The
bad news is a pair of laughable "plus 2" rear seats. You would be
to call them "dog seats". How small ? it might accommodate handicapped
passengers without legs. And I doubt if the boot, with the roof stored,
can accommodate a folded wheelchair.
the SLK-style aluminium roof is fabulous. Press a button and it will be
automatically folded and stored in the boot within 25 seconds.
when a Peugeot costing a third of its price has the same feature,
this Lexus is no longer as proud as it should have been. Sorry for
back to subjective sense again, but honestly speaking subjective image
means a lot to this kind of prestige cars.
to cool mechanical spec and you’ll see the platform is actually a
GS430, with the same creamy yet powerful 300-horsepower V8 and
yet clever 5-speed automatic, though there is no Tiptronic-style
Few care, as the chassis still favour comfort rather than handling
the old car was even more so. Lexus claimed the body shell is stiffer
Jaguar XK8 Convertible but R&T’s testers found the opposite, that’s
probably because the Lexus rides on softer suspension setting. They
felt the Jaguar more agile to change direction while the Lexus felt
and heavier. Steering is accurate and vibration-free but could be a
numb. Unsurprisingly, the positive side is smooth ride.
this respect, the Lexus follows tightly its traditional values of
refinement in first priority. That’s a bit sad after seeing the new
set by IS. Being a 300-horsepower coupe pricing near Jaguar XK8 and
CLK430 Conv., it’s driver appeal is inevitably letting us down. Perhaps
the car concentrates too much on American market - some two-third of
15,000 cars produced annually will destine there - and fail to care the
rest of the world, especially Europe. Ah ha, you know, the old SC coupe
was bounded in the America and Japan.
out next year’s long-awaited (for 13 years) new Mercedes SL, with
roof and superior handling yet no compromise in ride comfort, I believe
the tri-star can sell double number of cars compare with the Lexus yet
manage to earn double profit margin per car. Believe or not !
all, the new SC coupe is less desirable than the original appeared in
I think it cannot last as long.