2017 Lexus RC 300

#30
in Compact coupes
2017 MODEL

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Detailed Review

Style, performance, design, and comfort in correct proportion is the recipe for a good car. Minus two doors makes it even better. The sloping roofline, arched wheels, and unique touches are what make the 2017 Lexus RC 300 a very good contender to the coupes in the market today. RC series was introduced by Lexus in 2015 as an alternative to the big three.

With a base price of $42,770 for the AWD variant and $43,765 for the F Sport trim, it sure is a bargain for what it has to offer. The 3.5L V6 motor produces a peak power of 255 horsepower and 236 lb-ft torque whereas the F Sport trim produces 260 horsepower and has few other sporty additions to it.

See detailed review »

Pros

Well engineered chassis provide comfortable ride

Smooth power delivery from the V6 motor

Craftsmanship quality is amazing

Good steering

Cons

Seats at the back are cramped for adults

Performance subpar

Infotainment unit is difficult to operate

What's New?

The Lexus RC 300 remains unchanged


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$42770

bodystyle

2dr Coupe

passenger capacity

4

top speed

143 mph

drivetrain

AWD

engine type

displacement

211 cu. in.

horsepower

255 hp @ 6400 rpm

torque

236 lb.-ft. @ 2000 rpm

transmission

6-speed automatic

chassis

suspension front

independent front double wishbone suspension

suspension rear

independent rear multi-link suspension

brake rotors (f/r)

12.2 in. ventilated disc brakes/13.1 in. ventilated disc brakes

dimensions

wheelbase

107.5 in.

length

184.8 in.

width

72.4 in.

height

55.1 in.

curb weight

3891 lbs.

ground clearance

5.3 in.

capacity

passenger volume

82 cu ft.

cargo volume

10.4 cu ft.

towing capacity

4500 lbs.

payload capacity

1058 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

6.4 sec.

standing ¼-mile

15 sec.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

19/21/26 mpg

highway range

452.4 mi.

warranty

basic warranty

4 years/50000 miles

drivetrain warranty

6 years/70000 miles

corrosion warranty

6 years/unlimited

roadside assistance

yes



Styles

 2017 Lexus RC 300 in Atomic Silver color  2017 Lexus RC 300 in Caviar color  2017 Lexus RC 300 in Eminent White Pearl color  2017 Lexus RC 300 in Infrared color  2017 Lexus RC 300 in Nebula Gray Pearl color  2017 Lexus RC 300 in Obsidian color
Atomic Silver

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

6.0

Engine

9.0

Fuel Economy

8.1

Interior

10

Exterior

7.9

Driving

6.4

7.9

OVERALL RATING

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


 2017 Lexus RC 300 Base

Base

power
255 hp @ 6400 rpm
fuel
Premium unleaded (required)
mpg
21 combined

$42,770


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
2dr Coupe AWD (3.5L 6cyl 6A) Starting at $42,770 MSRP (19/21/26) 255 hp @ 6400 rpm3.5V6premium unleaded (required)
See Full Specs
6-speed automatic all wheel drive 4

Top Lexus Cars

2017 Lexus RC 200t
9.5/10

Engine: 241 hp @ 5800 rpm, 2 L I4

MPG: 26 combined

2017 Lexus RX 350
8.3/10

Engine: 295 hp @ 6300 rpm, 3.5 L V6

MPG: 23 combined

2017 Lexus GS 350
8.7/10

Engine: 311 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L V6

MPG: 22 combined

2018 Lexus GS 350
8.3/10

Engine: 311 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L V6

MPG: 22 combined

2018 Lexus RX 450h hybrid
8.8/10

Engine: 308 hp @ 6000 rpm, 3.5 L V6

MPG: 30 combined

2017 Lexus RX 450h hybrid
8.8/10

Engine: 308 hp @ 6000 rpm, 3.5 L V6

MPG: 30 combined

2018 Lexus GS 300
8.1/10

Engine: 241 hp @ 5800 rpm, 2 L I4

MPG: 26 combined

2017 Lexus ES 350
8.6/10

Engine: 268 hp @ 6200 rpm, 3.5 L V6

MPG: 24 combined


Expert Review


CARHP Editorial September 25, 2018

7.9

Overall Rating


6.0/10
Features

 

9.0/10
Engine

 

8.1/10
Fuel Economy

 

10/10
Interior

 

7.9/10
Exterior

 
 
 
 

The key rivals to the RC 300 are the Infiniti Q60 3.0T Premium and the Cadillac ATS premium luxury 3.6. Both of these sport an AWD drivetrain and bumped up price tags. However, does the RC 300 really prove to be great value for money?

2017 Lexus RC 300 Features

6.0/10

The RC 300 is available in 2 variants both having AWD as standard. The Lexus RC 300 is a sporty coupe that looks sharp because of the aggressive styling. It remains unchanged since 2015 when it was introduced. The Lexus RC 300 coupe blends performance and comfort, seamlessly. It has 2 variants being the RC AWD and the RC F Sport trim.

Trim RC 300 RC 300 F sport
MSRP

(AWD)

$42,770 $43,765
Key

Features

Fully Galvanized Steel Panels Quasi-Dual Stainless Steel Exhaust w/Polished Tailpipe Finisher
LED Brakelights Fully Automatic Projector Beam Led Low Beam Daytime Running Auto-Leveling Headlamps w/Delay
Radio: AM/FM/In-Dash CD Lexus Display Lexus Enform w/Safety Connect Selective Service Internet Access
Bluetooth Wireless Phone Connectivity Speed Sensitive Variable Intermittent Wipers
Includes Power Rear Seat Easy Entry Compact Spare Tire Mounted Inside Under Cargo
Remote Keyless Entry w/Integrated Key Transmitter, 2 Door Curb/Courtesy, Illuminated Entry, Illuminated Ignition Switch and Panic Button Electric Power-Assist Speed-Sensing Steering
Audio Theft Deterrent  
Audio -inc: 7" VGA screen, 10 speakers, 256-watts, digital signal processing, HD Radio  

The F Sport trim offers slightly better performance with a bump of 5 hp and other unique styling cues that distinguish it from the standard RC.

2017 Lexus RC 300 Engine

9.0/10

The RC is a fine performer in base form and the F Sport package adds some real excitement. - TheCarConnection

Engine and Transmission

The Lexus RC 300 coupe is packed with a 3.5L V6 motor that produces a peak power of 255 horsepower and 236 lb-ft torque. The F Sport trim produces 260 horsepower and is offered with a stiffer suspension setup and active dampeners for a sportier ride.

Models Lexus RC 300 (AWD) Infiniti Q60 3.0t premium (AWD) Cadillac ATS premium luxury 3.6 (AWD)
MSRP $42,770 $46,300 $48,995
Engine 3.5L V6 DOHC 24-Valve w/Dual VVT-i 3.0L DOHC V6 Twin Turbo 3.6L V6, SIDI, DOHC, VVT
Transmission 6-speed automatic 7-speed automatic 8-speed automatic
Horsepower 255 hp @ 6400 rpm 300 hp @ 6400 rpm 335 hp @ 6800 rpm
Torque 236 lb-ft @ 2000 rpm 295 lb-ft @ 1600 rpm 285 lb-ft @ 5300 rpm

The power delivery is smooth and linear, but the 6-speed automatic transmission is not very gutsy when compared to its rivals. The AWD setup used in the RC 300 along with the 2-liter inline four engine provides adequate power but is nowhere close to the RC F sport variant.

When stacked up beside the contenders, the Infiniti Q60 has a smaller 3.0L V6 motor but produces 300 horsepower and the Cadillac ATS churns out a respectable 335 horsepower from its 3.6L V6. The prices of both of these are, however, more than the RC 300.

Acceleration

The RC 300 takes 6.3 seconds to complete its 0 to 60 MPH. The quarter mile is achieved within 15.4 seconds. The peak torque is accessible at 2000 RPM and Lexus engineers have done a good job to keep the power delivery linear and predictable. At the end of the day, the RC would leave you wanting for more power.

Models Lexus RC 300 (AWD) Infiniti Q60 3.0t premium (AWD) Cadillac ATS premium luxury 3.6 (AWD)
0-60 MPH 6.3 sec 5.5 sec 4.9 sec
Quarter mile 15.4 sec 14.1 sec 13.3 sec
Engine 3.5L 3.0L 3.6L
Emission

(Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year)

8.4 8.0 8.0

The rivals offer stiff competition to the RC 300. Naught to 60 is achieved at 5.5 seconds and 4.9 seconds by the Q60 and Caddy ATS respectively. The Lexus RC 300 feels underpowered for a luxury performance coupe and should definitely have better numbers.

Ride and Handling

The RC 300 features four driving modes and depending upon your mood you can choose to push it hard or enjoy a compliant and comfortable ride. The RC F variants are offered with an RWD and torque vectoring system that makes cornering at higher speeds, safer. The RC 300 isn't composed over rougher terrain. Any road undulations travel to the cabin, and the ride will be choppy if pushed hard over the rough surfaces. The RC displays moderate handling characteristics.

Braking

The Lexus RC 300 has 13.2-inch diameter front brakes and 12.2-inch diameter rear brakes. With a curb weight of almost 3,900 pounds, it feels a bit heavy and takes 110 feet to stop from 60-0 MPH.

Model Lexus RC 300 (AWD) Infiniti Q60 3.0t premium (AWD) Cadillac ATS premium luxury 3.6 (AWD)
Brake Front (in.) 13.2 12.6 12.6
Brake Rear (in.) 12.2 12.1 12.4
Curb Weight (lbs.) 3891 3939 3693
60-0 MPH (ft.) 110 109 115

The contenders, however, each sport 12.6-inch front brakes. For the rear, the Infiniti has 12.1-inch brakes and the Cadillac has 12.4-inch brakes. The Infiniti has a curb weight of 3939 pounds and the Cadillac is much lighter at 3693 pounds. The stopping distance is shortest for the Infiniti with 109 feet and 115 feet for the Cadillac.

2017 Lexus RC 300 Fuel Economy

8.1/10

The fuel economy offered by the Lexus is rated as 19 MPG in the city, 26 MPG on the highway and a combined economy of 21 MPG. With this kind of economy, the RC 300 Coupe proves to be a capable daily commuter as well as a highway cruiser.

Model Lexus RC 300 (AWD) Infiniti Q60 3.0t premium (AWD) Cadillac ATS premium luxury 3.6 (AWD)
MPG (city) 19 19 19
MPG (highway) 26 27 27
MPG (combined) 21 22 22

The Lexus, Infiniti and the Cadillac all have similar fuel economy numbers. However, Infiniti and Cadillac have identical numbers, both of them better the RC 300 at 22 MPG combined mileage.

2017 Lexus RC 300 Interior

10/10

The interior of the RC 300 is well-built but has some issues. User interfaces are frustrating at best, and the space is good up front but ultra-tight in back. There are few places to put things such as cellphones, the trunk is small, and many visibility aids cost extra. - Edmunds

Seating and Comfort

The RC 300 has the greatest ground clearance amongst the contenders but still is a tight squeeze when interior space is considered. The passenger capacity is that of 4 but the rear seats are too tiny, even for children, let alone adults. The front seats are comfortable and tech-infused, electronically-assisted and provide a good experience overall. It boasts a touchscreen infotainment system but it is not really easy to use. It takes some time getting used to.

Model Lexus RC 300 (AWD) Infiniti Q60 3.0t premium (AWD) Cadillac ATS premium luxury 3.6 (AWD)
Passenger capacity 4 4 4
Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.) 39.0/54.7/45.4 37.4/54.6/43.1 37.6/54.1/42.3
Second

(Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)

34.8/50.8/27.3 34.5/52.0/32.4 35.1/51.1/33.5

The headroom and legroom is plenty in the front which when teamed up with the leather upholstery feels premium and roomy. The Infiniti and the Caddy have a similar problem when talking about the rear seating but at the same time, provide comfort and beautifully designed cabins to the driver and front passenger.

Cargo Volume

The cargo volume of the Lexus RC 300 is 10.4(ft.3) which is identical to the Cadillac ATS. It is enough space to carry luggage for a weekend getaway making the Lexus a pretty good practical coupe. The Infiniti loses a point here having 8.7(ft.3) in the trunk.

Model Lexus RC 300 (AWD) Infiniti Q60 3.0t premium (AWD) Cadillac ATS premium luxury 3.6 (AWD)
Cargo Volume (ft.3) 10.4 8.7 10.4

2017 Lexus RC 300 Exterior

7.9/10

Its jazzy styling is more aggressive than rivals like the Infiniti Q60. But it's not all about looks. Unlike the Q60, the RC offers responsive steering and a high-reliability rating. - Cars.usnews

Dimensions and Weight

The Lexus is on the heavier side of the scale. The RC 300 weighs 3891 pounds. It is the longest and tallest out of the bunch. The handling is unnerving around the corners, it demonstrates a bit of body roll when cornered at high speeds. The steering transmits a good feel of the road and lets you know when the car starts losing grip. It doesn't really feel confident to corner aggressively despite the presence of electronic aids like the Traction Control and ESC.

Model Lexus RC 300 (AWD) Infiniti Q60 3.0t premium (AWD) Cadillac ATS premium luxury 3.6 (AWD)
Curb weight (lbs.) 3891 3939 3693
Length(in) 184.8 184.4 183.6
Width(in) 72.4 72.8 72.5
Height(in) 55.1 54.9 54.8
Ground clearance (in) 5.3 4.9 5.0
Wheelbase (in) 107.5 112.2 109.3
Track width (in) F/R 62.2/61.8 61.2/62.2 60.3/61.7

The Cadillac is the lightest in the mix and because of that, it handles very well. AWD technology of the Caddy helps in the confident handling. Even though Infiniti is the heaviest, the power delivery and the steering is better than the RC 300.

2017 Lexus RC 300 Safety

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the nonprofit, independent Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) evaluate vehicles for crashworthiness in the United States. It rates vehicles out of 5 stars/Good to Poor scale respectively. The results of the tests are mentioned below.

NHTSA has not yet rated the Lexus RC 300 Coupe.

IIHS Rating

Crashworthiness
Small overlap front driver side Good
Small overlap front passenger side Good
Moderate overlap front Good
Side Good
Roof strength Good
Head restraints & seats Good
Front crash prevention Advanced
Headlights Acceptable
Child seats anchors (LATCH) Good

Safety Features

The Lexus RC 300 is well equipped with safety features to make the drive reliable and free of mishaps. It features standard safety features as airbags, traction control to prevent slipping, ABS (Antilock Braking System) to handle emergency braking scenarios. Safety monitoring is an optional safety feature which can be opted to increase the safety of the vehicle.

  • Safety Connect Emergency SOS
  • Airbag Occupancy Sensor
  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC)
  • First Aid Kit
  • ABS And Driveline Traction Control
  • Outboard Front Lap And Shoulder Safety Belts -including Pretensioners

2017 Lexus RC 300 Competition

Infiniti Q60 3.0t Premium (AWD) Vs Lexus RC 300

The Infiniti Q60 is a very well designed coupe that packs all the essentials a luxury performance coupe should have. It sports a sticker price of $46,300 which is thousands more than the Lexus. The extra $4000 brings much more power, better acceleration, shorter stopping distance, and better fuel economy. The Infiniti offers a good value for money and these increments make the Q60 a better overall contender.

Cadillac ATS Premium Luxury 3.6 (AWD) Vs Lexus RC 300

As aggressively designed as the Lexus is, the Caddy has the additional performance to match it as well. It packs a 3.6L motor that produces 335 hp. Acceleration of the Lexus doesn't come near the Cadillac. Although, fuel economy and cargo volume are similar but the Lexus has better braking performance. The pricing of the Cadillac works to its disadvantage. The Lexus RC 300 Coupe offers a better value for money.

2017 Lexus RC 300 Final Verdict

The 2017 Lexus RC 300 Coupe is a good value for money luxury performance coupe with lots of features alongside a solid build quality. The performance of the Lexus is subpar and it feels underpowered when compared with the rivals. The styling of the coupe is aggressive from every angle, it makes you crave for extra power. The styling is a two-way affair- either you would love it or you wouldn't even look at it.

The Lexus RC 300 betters the Cadillac owing to its better daily drivability and practicality which is offered at a lower price. However, the Infiniti Q60 is the all-rounder for this segment. As it ensures amazing practicality and performance.