NASCAR star Kyle Busch made the bad kind of news yesterday when he was popped for doing 128 mph in a 45 mph zone behind the wheel of a new Lexus LFA. Or was it all that bad? Now some claim it's all a setup by Lexus. Is it?
According to a Jalopnik source, Kyle Busch picked up the car from Hendrick Lexus in Charlotte, N.C., (owned by NASCAR team owner Rick Hendrick) who was responsible for loaning it out to Toyota drivers who wanted to take the vehicle for a spin. The first to sign up? "Rowdy" Kyle Busch.
It was a nice little exchange. Busch showed up, signed some autographs, and then took the keys to a brand new $450,000 luxury supercar (seen in the video above) for a day. "He drove it off the lot at about 2 mph with the Lexus rep looking on very nervously since Kyle has a wild side," said our tipster.
An hour later, in a remote part of North Carolina he's clocked doing 128 mph by the police and given a ticket. CONSPIRACY? An attempt by Lexus to get good PR for their supercar? Not really.
Let's start with the apparent source of the rumor: people who work in the service department at a Lexus dealer. This isn't to say people who work at service departments in Lexus dealers in North Carolina are untruthful, it's just that car mechanics in the south tend to chew Skoal and spit BS as a manner of custom.
Plus, Kyle Busch is a NASCAR driver nicknamed "Rowdy" who doesn't need to be given a reason to speed in a supercar. The thing can go 202 mph which means it's more surprising he was busted for only doing 128 mph.
Finally, the people who buy expensive, small production high-tech luxury Japanese cars might be the same people who watch NASCAR regularly enough to follow news about a NASCAR driver, but we doubt it's such a key demo for them they're going to setup one of their own drivers.
The last thing Lexus, or its parent company Toyota, would want to do right now is have anyone talk about one of their cars in the same breath as the words "speeding uncontrollably." They've sort of had a problem with that lately.
We only wish Lexus was that cool.
Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/Getty Images