Lexus LF-C2 Production Skipped In Favour Of SUV Sales: Report Photo:
2014_lexus_lf_c2_rc_convertible_concept_00 Photo: tmr
2014_lexus_lf_c2_rc_convertible_concept_00d Photo: tmr
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2014_lexus_lf_c2_rc_convertible_concept_01 Photo: tmr
Mike Stevens | Nov, 24 2014 | 3 Comments

Lexus has reportedly binned a long-planned production schedule for its newly revealed LF-C2 convertible concept, in favour of a new three-row SUV model.

The LF-C2, shown at this month’s LA Auto Show, was widely believed to preview a coming droptop version of the new RC Coupe, giving Lexus a rival to BMW’s 4 Series Convertible.

Now, a new report with US mag Motor Trend suggests that Lexus dealers were furious at a decision to skip a three-row version of the next RX SUV in favour of the convertible.

Focused more on the sales potential and huge market demand for large seven-seat SUVs, Lexus dealers in the US are believed to have driven a change of plan that will see the carmaker revisit its plans for a large three-row model.

It is little surprise that Lexus dealers would prefer a new SUV variant over a hero convertible: despite the image-building value, topless models make up a mere one percent of overall sales in the US.

The turnabout presents more than a few headaches for Lexus, however.

The RC Coupe’s hefty kerb weight is known to be thanks to additional strengthening work installed specifically for an eventual convertible model that is now unlikely to ever appear.

More, the next-generation RX SUV that is already well into development was reportedly not planned to ever accommodate the ability to stretch its wheelbase for more seating. (Interestingly, if the next RX is again based on the Toyota Kluger, seven seats would indeed be an option - although not in as spacious a design as what a larger platform could offer.)

Lexus is instead believed to looking at the platform of its next LS limo for the seven-seat SUV’s architecture.

That would make the new SUV larger even than a stretched RX, suggesting Lexus will instead launch a LX-replacing rival to the gigantic Audi Q7 and Mercedes-Benz GL.

MORE: Lexus RC | Lexus RX | Large Prestige SUVs

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