2011 Lexus LFA

In brief

Think Lexus and you'll more than likely think of luxury sedans crammed full with kit. The company's trying to change that image, though. First there was the bonkers IS-F performance sedan and now there's the LFA supercar.

The front-engine, rear-wheel drive LFA hopes to tempt the well-healed enthusiast away from their Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Audi R8s and the like. And like the Italian marques, Lexus is offering extensive personalisation options, including 30 exterior colours, three wheel types and six brake calliper options; inside one can choose between either 12 leather options or 10 variants of alcantara (fake suede).

Up front is a 4.8-litre V10 engine that cranks out 412kW of power and 480Nm of torque. Thanks partially to a cabin constructed largely from carbon fibre-reinforced plastic, weight is pegged at 1480kg and the LFA can sprint from zero to 100km/h in 3.7 seconds and on to an eventual top speed of 325km/h.

Final specifications have yet to be confirmed, but the LFA will come standard with a six-speed sequential gearbox. Judging from the photos that have been released so far, the LFA will feature a Mark Levinson sound system, an LCD instrument display, and an entertainment and navigation system controlled by the company's Remote Touch controller.

Outlook

Lexus has recently confirmed that out of the 500 LFAs that it will be making, eight will be sold in Australia -- that's up from the five that it had initially promised us.

The first LFA is due to be hand assembled in December 2010, with Australian customer deliveries set to commence in April 2011. No prices have been announced, although AU$750,000 is the figure that most often crops up in reports.