Lexus LF-A exclusive new details

27 May, 2009 6:54pm Peter Lyon

Lexus' long-awaited supercar will take the fight to its Italian competitors with a scintillating 220mph top speed

Lexus has its sights set on joining the supercar elite! We have it on good authority that Toyota has finally succeeded in its bid to find a higher top speed for Japan’s most expensive, and fastest production car ever, the Lexus LF-A.  

One source close to the company told us over a year ago that the development team was not happy with the car’s top speed of 199mph, and had sent it back to the shop for fine-tuning. And now, after a year of testing in wind tunnels, strategic revisions to the car’s aerodynamics and minor adjustments to its V10 engine, we are the first to reveal that the R&D team has finally found the extra legs.

The LF-A’s 550bhp-plus 4.8-litre V10, channeled through a 6-speed semi-auto transmission bolted to a transaxle, is now capable of over 218mph. That’s faster than the production Nissan GT-R and puts the LF-A on hallowed ground with the likes of Ferrari Enzo, Lamborghini Murcielago LP640 and Pagani Zonda F, that have similar top speeds.

Our scoop squad has also learned that the actual production model will look very different to the prototypes seen at the Nurburgring, especially around the headlights and grille, so we can expect a surprise when the car finally surfaces later in 2009.

We are now being told that the LF-A will be a limited edition model of 500 cars and that includes a high performance sports package version boasting a wider body and beefed up aeroparts similar to those seen on the race version at Nurburgring (pictured). And if the race car’s lap time of 7 minutes 13 seconds is anything to go by then we can expect blistering pace from the production model too.

Prices are expected to range from around £140,000 to £190,000, but whether a traditionally luxurious brand such as Lexus has the kudos to demand such a high sticker price is a hot topic of debate.

All the signs point to a Tokyo Motor Show launch in October for the LF-A, especially given that Toyota wants to maximize exposure with the double reveal of its all-new rear-drive, 2.0-litre 3-door sports coupe, co-developed with Subaru.

Check out what the LF-A is up against in our world's fastest cars special here.

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