Nürburgring edition LFA at Geneva
CAN YOU TELL THE DIFFERENCE?: Orange Nürburgring edition LFA features a fixed rear spoiler and ‘mesh’ design alloy wheels.
It may be one of the world’s most accomplished (and exclusive) supercars, but, if the series production Lexus LFA is a trifle too common for your tastes, there is something even more select set to debut at the Geneva auto show next week.
Total LFA production is limited to only 500 cars. Of those, an even 50 (10%) will be available with the elite Nürburgring package.
Most will question how the standard LFA, with its exquisite carbon-fibre chassis, sophisticated aerodynamics and 412kW naturally aspirated V10, could possibly be improved.
Lexus, though, believes its Nürburgring package does supplant the awesome performance expectations customers have of the LFA, catering for those possible owners who desire the ultimate in tactile supercar driveability.
Although the Nürburgring package adds very little to the standard LFA’s outrageous styling, there is an upgraded aerodynamic package comprising a larger front and fin-type side spoilers, canard fin and fixed rear wing, as opposed to the series production LFA’s retractable aft spoiler.
Lexus engineers have altered the LFA’s dampers and reduced its ride height by 10mm as part of the Nürburgring package in the interest of sharpening steering responses and improving high-speed tracking stability. Rolling the most exotic road legal Bridgestone Potenzas available, the ultimate LFA should have nearly unbreakable levels of mechanical grip through corners and fast sweeps.
The upgraded aerodynamics, suspension tuning, Nürburgring package tyres and increased downforce make the LFA more stable at speed, yet mitigate against its ultimate sprinting performance by virtue of the increased drag.
To ensure the LFA retains its fabled performance statistics, even with the less aerodynamically efficient Nürburgring package added, Lexus engineers have fiddled with the 4.8-litre V10’s engine control electronics to unleash an additional 7 units of power to record a peak of 419kW.
The automated manual six-speed transmission’s shift regime has been recalibrated too, swopping gears in only 15 miliseconds, thereby enabling the LFA Nürburgring package to sprint from 0-100km/h in only 3.7 seconds.
There is of a bitter irony to this fastest of all LFAs, as Toyota’s legendary chief test driver, Hiromu Naruse, was killed testing the LFA at Germany’s fabled Nürburgring in June of 2010.
More 2011 Geneva auto show reports.