Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
April 12th, 2012
There isn’t an automaker more aware of its conservative image these days than Toyota. Since the company lost interest in continuing its classic performance models like the Celica, Supra, and MR-2, it fell off of enthusiasts’ radars almost completely. From there, the rising average age of its buyers quietly earned it a reputation as a company who built ornaments for retirement home parking lots.
Just as Toyota was walking away publicly from performance cars however, it was also beginning a rather secretive ten year development program for the first ever Japanese supercar — the Lexus LFA. And although it wasn’t exactly praised for its styling and outright criticized for its lofty $375,000 dollar price tag, Toyota somehow didn’t even come close to resorting to paper sacks of money balled up in gloveboxes to sell the car to buyers. While a Ferrari 599 was just as fast and considerably cheaper, the LFA proudly wore the title of “Japan’s first supercar” around its neck like a ten ton Olympic gold metal, and production was limited to just 500 examples making it quite rare and desirable.
Despite the styling and cost, the Lexus LFA was actually successful — and it’s the LFA’s success, as well as Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda’s desire for the company to better utilize its performance-minded potential, that the Japanese auto giant may work on a second album to follow-up the LFA’s first.
At least, that’s what AutoGuide is saying anyway. According to AG, a “well-connected” source of theirs contacted them, claiming that word was passed on to him by a top-ranking executive that plans for the next LFA are already underway and it will be more powerful, more exclusive, and more expensive. AutoGuide claims that only 100 examples will be built and it could cost upwards of $800,000 dollars, possibly even a whole million.
That certainly sounds, well, utterly ridiculous coming from a company that’s still better known for its hypoallergenic hybrid models like the Prius. Based on the information suggested by AutoGuide, it seems that Toyota isn’t content with building a car that’s in the same company as various Ferraris and Lamborghinis; it seems that Toyota wants to go straight to the heart of the supercar sun while thrusting a dagger at the Bugatti Veyron. It all could be credible, but I’m personally taking it with a grain of salt.