The latest incarnation
of the Lexus
SC series, better known in Japan
as the Toyota Soarer
430SCV. The SC430, released in March 2001
, is one bad mother
of a sports car
, and is a worthy successor
to the legacy of the awesome Toyota Supra
. The SC430 is created to slug it out with other "luxury sports
s such as the Infiniti G35
, Audi TT
, and Mercedes SLK 430
, and does so rather well.
As its name implies (if you're familiar with typical naming schemes of cars), the rear wheel drive SC430 utilizes a big, bad 4.3-liter, all-aluminum DOHC V8 engine with Toyota's innovative VVT-i -- Variable Valve Timing with Intelligence, a main feature of the Soarer for over a decade -- producing a solid 300 horsepower @ 5600 rpm, yet still making the California Air Resources Board's harsh Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle standards. Features such as Vehicle Skid Control and a TRAC traction control system, teamed up with double wishbone independent suspension, electronic five-speed automatic transmission, and vented disc brakes on all four wheels with an anti-lock braking system create a stable, easy handling ride. Of course, it couldn't be a Lexus without luxury -- the SC430 provides, with a retractable hardtop, leather interior, heated front seats (ooh), six-disc CD changer, power windows and locks, electric mirrors, DVD navigation system and more.
Unfortunately, the SC430 is very expensive, to the majority of us anyway, starting at $62,600 USD -- an about equal competitor, Infiniti's G35, costs less than half, at $27,675.