Above: Lexus's RC F-styled Super GT 500 race car.
Lexus Australia boss Sean Hanley is set to announce tomorrow, February 6, at Sydney Motorsport Park that Lexus is putting its toe in the water with the V8 Supercar series.
The announcement, we understand, is that Lexus will be providing its new RC F V8 performance car as safety and pace cars for the 2015 V8 Supercar race calendar.
Further to that, Mr Hanley today conceded to media at the launch of the new NX 200t that Lexus was “examining the benefits” of a full racing involvement with the Supercar series.
Central to Lexus Australia’s interest is that it has got a monster V8 of its own that could arguably be let off the leash on the V8 grid.
“This (Lexus) 5.0 litre V8, it’s a great engine,” Mr Hanley said.
“We’re looking at the entire motorsport landscape; we’re examining the benefits it might have to this brand.”
This examination includes V8 Supercars, but, as has been previously reported, any involvement on the grid by Lexus will depend upon the shape of the 2017 technical regulations, which could vastly alter the eligibility for entrants and the format of the series.
“But there will be no quick decisions,” he said. “If we go into it, we’ll go into it right.”
Our understanding is that ‘head office’ wasn’t entirely enamoured of Mr Hanley’s musings to the media last year of such an involvement, but he seems to have talked his Japanese superiors around.
It will be an interesting marriage for the luxury brand.