The drop is expected to be just as popular as the coupe.
Despite playing in the same field as some formidable German opponents, Lexus earns its relatively high sales figures without the vastly expanded ranges that BMW, Mercedes, and Audi have. While the European competition stuffs its lineups with sedans, four-door coupes, real coupes (two-door cars), SUVs in regular guises and "coupe” mutations, and convertibles, Lexus makes do with "regular” SUVs, a range of non-coupe sedans, and only two coupes, one of which is already five years old and looking the part.
Though the brand did previously build the SC and IS convertible models, it has no drop-top currently on sale in the US. But as we know, that’s about to change once the LC Convertible makes its North American debut.
Not only will the LC Convertible help usher in a new era of Lexus convertibles, it will also change Lexus’ grip on the grand touring car segment, according to what the LC’s chief engineer and executive vice president of Lexus International, Koji Sato, told Motor1 during a recent interview.
That’s because according to Sato, the LC Convertible will be just as popular as the Coupe. In fact, he expects North American sales to be split down the middle. "In the U.S. market, the convertible will share almost half [of sales] with the coupe," Sato notes. "That means we are expecting the same level of excitement in that market.” This even split could be due to how the LC Convertible’s target markets are also areas where the LC already sells well. Affluent areas like Los Angeles and Miami are also regions that don’t rain much and therefore buy heavily into the convertible market, furthering the LC Convertible's presence.
And of course, the LC Convertible will need affluent customers since it will likely start over the $100k mark once it goes on sale in the US. While Lexus hasn’t confirmed powertrain options yet, we can probably expect the LC Convertible to come in Hybrid and gasoline engined flavors, just like the Coupe does.
The Coupe comes powered by a 5.0-liter V8 sending 471 horsepower to the rear wheels in the 500 model and a hybrid 3.5-liter V6 that makes 354 horsepower in the 500h model. While the old SC and IS convertibles were more attainable cars than the LC Convertible will be, Lexus' new drop-top will help better position the company as an automaker that offers the quality of its German competitors’ flagship cars without commanding such a high price.