With a big V-8 engine under the hood, a rear-wheel drive layout, and a suspension tuned for sporty driving, the 2021 Lexus RC F adds a wallop to the brand’s luxury coupe lineup. With 472-hp, the RC F is quick and sounds delightful, but it fails to deliver the sharp handling of rivals such as the Audi RS5 or the Mercedes-AMG C63 coupe. The interior is roomy for two but the rear seat is tight for adults. Luckily for those seated up front, Lexus provides comfortable bucket seats and plenty of luxury features. A full set of driver-assistance systems come standard as well, and the RC F is fully equipped with a well-connected infotainment system.
What’s New for 2021?
The RC F carries over unchanged from the 2020 model year with the exception of a new Fuji Speedway Edition model. The special edition is limited to just 60 cars and comes in either Artic Blast Satin (matte white) or Cloudburst Gray exterior colors, both with a red leather interior. If you’re lucky enough to snag one of the 60 Fuji Speedway Edition cars, you’ll also receive a limited production MSTR watch to go with it. Blind spot monitoring, memory front seats, and Android Auto all become standard this year and the base model gains heated exterior mirrors.
Pricing and Which One to Buy
- Base: $66,000 (est)
- Fuji Speedway Edition: $75,000 (est)
- Track Edition: $98,000 (est)
We think most shoppers will be pleased with the RC F’s base model, which is sold with an appealing range of standard equipment. For those seeking heightened performance, there’s the Track Edition trim. This model comes with upgrades such as carbon-ceramic Brembo brake rotors and a red leather interior. It also has a lighter curb weight than the base model, and this translates into slightly quicker performance. The base-model RC F rides on 19-inch forged-aluminum wheels, and it comes with exterior features such as a spoiler, a black grille with metallic accents, automatic LED headlights, LED brake lights, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and heated sideview mirrors with integrated turn signals. The list of standard interior features includes simulated leather upholstery, a manually adjustable tilt-and-telescoping steering column, keyless entry and ignition, dual-zone automatic climate control and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. All RC F sports cars come with the Lexus Safety System+ suite of driver-assistance technology, and this includes amenities such as forward-collision warning and adaptive cruise control.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
All 2021 Lexus RC F coupes are motivated by a 5.0-liter V-8 engine that produces 472 horsepower and 395 lb-ft of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission sends power to the rear wheels. During our testing back in 2014, the RC F made it from zero to 60 mph in 4.3 seconds. For 2020 the RC F received a slight power boost and a lighter curb weight, which allowed it to zip to 60 in just 4.1 seconds this time around. Even with this slight improvement, other picks in this segment provide quicker acceleration. For example, a BMW M4 Competition we tested made it from a standstill to 60 mph in 3.8 seconds. The RC F comes standard with drive-mode settings that allow you to customize the car’s performance. Its smooth handling makes it a comfortable choice for everyday driving.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
According to the EPA, the Lexus RC F achieves mileage of 16/24 mpg city/highway. It’s less fuel-efficient than rival coupes such as the BMW M4 (18/25 mpg). During our time with the RC F, we observed mileage of 15 mpg.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
The RC F’s cabin is notable for its plush comfort and elegant design. The front seats are a pleasant place to spend your commute, and the interior is home to chic styling and premium materials. Technically, this coupe provides four-passenger seating, but the cramped back seat is best used for cargo storage. In back, the RC F’s trunk offers 10.1 cubic feet of room for your stuff. That’s less room than you’ll get with rivals such as the BMW M4 coupe (11.0 cubic feet) and Mercedes-AMG C43 4Matic (10.5 cubic feet).
Infotainment and Connectivity
Lexus has equipped the RC F with the tech features modern buyers crave. Base models come with Scout GPS Link navigation and a 10-speaker audio system with SiriusXM satellite radio. Bluetooth connectivity is standard, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are both on board for hassle-free device integration. All models are equipped with Amazon Alexa compatibility as well as a Wi-Fi hotspot that allows you to easily connect to the internet. The infotainment system comes standard with a 7.0-inch display screen, and a larger 10.3-inch display is available as an upgrade. Integrated navigation and a Mark Levinson sound system are optional.
Safety and Driver-Assistance Features
The 2021 Lexus RC F hasn’t been crash-tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). However, the 2019 RC was tested by the IIHS and received a top score of Good in all crashworthiness categories. Key safety features include:
- Standard forward-collision warning with pedestrian detection
- Standard lane-departure warning with lane-keeping assist
- Standard adaptive cruise control
Warranty and Maintenance Coverage
Lexus offers strong warranty protection that surpasses the coverage offered by competitors such as BMW and Mercedes-Benz.
- Limited warranty covers 4 years or 50,000 miles
- Powertrain warranty covers 6 years or 70,000 miles
- Complimentary maintenance is covered for 1 year or 10,000 miles
More Features and Specs