The 2021 Lexus RC coupe comes in these five basic models: RC 300, RC 300 AWD, RC 350, RC 350 AWD, and high-performance RC F. Besides a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine with an 8-speed automatic transmission, the 2021 Lexus
RC 300 ($42,120) has 18-in alloy wheels, polished exhaust pipes, cruise control, LED lighting, puddle lamps, heated side mirrors, push-button start, climate control, 60/40-split rear seats, a 7-in infotainment screen, adaptive cruise control, forward-collision mitigation with pedestrian detection, lane-departure warning, intelligent high beams, Wi-Fi, voice controls, a 256-watt, and a 10-speaker audio system with dual USB ports. The
RC 300 AWD ($44,810) has all those features, plus a 260-horsepower V6 engine and a 6-speed automatic. The
RC 350 ($45,050) and
RC 350 AWD ($47,215), have the same V6 as the RC 300 AWD, but it’s tuned to have 311 horsepower and 277 lb-ft of torque (vs 236). Considerably upping the sporting quotient is the
RC 350 F Sport (RWD: $49,520, AWD $51,130. This sporty RC350 comes with adaptive variable suspension, TFT gauges, sport seats, and 19-in alloy wheels. For 2021 ,there’s also a
Black Line Special Edition (RWD: $51,665, AWD: $53,274). Available in white or gray colors, the Black Line Special Edition has triple-beam LED headlamps, black 19-in F-Sport alloy wheels and darkened exhaust tips to go along with its silver-stitched black seats, ash interior trim and bespoke luggage from Zero Halliburton (a 22-inch carry-on and a 26-inch medium travel case). The almighty
Lexus RC F ($65,875), powered by a 5.0-liter V8 with 472 horsepower, remains at the top of the lineup for 2021 but there is a special new version called the
RC F Fuji Speedway Special Edition ($96,675). Limited to just 60 units, the Fuji Speedway RC F replaces the last year’s Track Edition and is fitted with Brembo carbon-ceramic brakes, titanium exhaust, carbon-fiber aerodynamics, and seats trimmed in red leather. Individual Lexus RC options include 19-inch alloy wheels with summer tires ($795), Intuitive Parking Assist ($500), a tilt and slide moonroof ($1,100), triple-beam LED headlights, and a heated steering wheel ($150). If you want the 17-speaker Mark Levinson audio system without the navigation system, it’s available as a stand-alone option for $1,080. Option packages include the $2,775 Navigation/Mark Levinson Premium Audio Package (a 17-speaker surround-sound audio system with a 10.3-inch navigation screen) and a $1,790 Premium Package (heated and vented front seats, rain-sensing wipers, power tilt/telescope steering wheel). On the RWD F-Sport model, a limited-slip differential is a wise $390 option, and you can also get a $1,900 Lexus Dynamic Handling system that includes rear-wheel steering and variable-ratio steering.
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) has named the Lexus RC a Top Safety Pick+. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has not crash-tested the RC. Among the standard active safety features on the 2021 Lexus RC is a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection. If the RC senses a potential collision with a car or a pedestrian, it automatically will apply its brakes to prevent the accident (or lessening the severity of it). Other standard safety technologies include a lane-departure alert, a system that lets the driver know if the RC is drifting out of its lane. It will even make minor steering corrections to bring the RC back into its lane. Last, we’re happy to report that Lexus has made a blind-spot monitor (with rear cross-traffic alert) standard for 2021. With this system, the driver always knows when there’s a car or a motorcycle in the RC’s rear three-quarter blind spot, making lane changes safer. Rear cross-traffic alert is similarly useful, warning the driver if there’s any potentially dangerous cross-traffic when the RC is being backed out of a parking spot.
2021 Lexus RC 300 vs the competition
2021 Audi A5/S5 — This coupe, derived from the
A4, is sold as a 252-hp A5 or a 354-hp S5. Stylish and quite spacious for a compact coupe.
2021 BMW 440i — This sporty German coupe has a big target on its back, and it’s has been tough to hit. The German sports coupe by which others are judged.
2021 Infiniti Q60 — Still looks good after all these years, and available with 400 horsepower. Don’t order the steer-by-wire option; it’s numb.
2021 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe — From C300 to AMG C63 S, a solid choice. The AMG C 43, with its twin-turbo V6, is especially sweet.
Used Porsche Cayman — This mid-engine 2-seater shows how a compact coupe can really drive. Some say it’s better than a Porsche 911.
Used Cadillac ATS-V Coupe — Go American with a rear-wheel-drive Cadillac ATS Coupe. The 2019 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe has a twin-turbo 3.6-liter with 464 horsepower.
Autotrader has 192 Used Lexus RC 300 cars for sale, including a 2019 Lexus RC 300, a 2019 Lexus RC 300 AWD, and a 2020 Lexus RC 300 F Sport.