LEXUS HAS OFFICIALLY UNVEILED its first entry into the supercar market, unwrapping the 412kW V10-powered LFA in front of the world's automotive media at the Tokyo Motor Show.
The LFA's performance stats are already known, having been leaked out ahead of schedule, but they're worth repeating.
A 4.8 litre naturally-aspirated V10 belts out 412kW at 8700rpm, 480Nm at 6800rpm and redlines at 9000rpm. Top speed is a heady 325km/h and the 0-100km/h sprint is demolished in just 3.7 seconds.
Each engine is hand-built by a single engineer, and the 72-degree V10 weighs roughly the same as a conventional V6.
Mounted low in the engine bay and connected to a rear-mounted six-speed automated manual transaxle, the lightweight powertrain's positioning gives the LFA a 48:52 front-rear weight distribution.
The LFA is built around a carbon-fibre/aluminium chassis, with carbon-fibre bodywork adorning the exterior. The extensive use of carbon saves around 100kg over an all-alloy chassis, but kerb weight is still a relatively heavy 1480kg.
Suspension consists of double wishbones at the front and a multi-link setup at the rear, with the car's aluminium monotube dampers being identical to those used by the race-going prototypes campaigned at the last Nurburgring 24-hour enduro.
A pair of 390mm carbon-ceramic discs are gripped by six-piston alloy calipers at the front, while 360mm carbon discs and four-piston calipers are used at the rear.
A quartet of 20-inch forged BBS alloy wheels are fitted, and wear grippy 265/35 ZR20 Bridgestone tyres up front, and 305/30 ZR20 tyres at the rear.
On the inside, an alcantara/leather trimmed interior cossets the driver and passenger, with exposed carbon fibre and forged aluminium lending the cabin a racier feel.
The instrument cluster is dominated by a centrally-mounted tachometer, but thanks to its LCD screen technology can reconfigure itself according to the car's drive mode.
Only 500 will be built, with production starting in December 2010 and winding up two years later. Only 20 cars are to be built each month, allowing Lexus to keep quality high and accommodate bespoke requests.
Pricing will start at Â¥37,500,000 in Japan and â‚¬368,000 in Europe. A local release has yet to be announced, but expect the price tag to nudge AU$1,000,000 if it ever comes to Australia.
Interestingly, Toyota Japan also confirmed that a "special model" of the LFA will enter production in early 2012, offering new colours, new design elements and a circuit-ready driving experience.
No other details are offered on the upcoming special model, but expect it to be to the LFA what the 430 Scuderia is to the "standard" Ferrari F430.