Before I drove the 2018 Lexus LC 500, I was pretty sure it was my favorite car on sale. Now that I’ve borrowed one for a weekend and spent hundreds of miles enjoying its naturally aspirated V8 and fantastic sound system, I know it’s my favorite car on sale.

But the themes that make the LC 500 spectacular are covered conclusively by Kristen’s great LC 500 review from last year. Instead of adding to her thoughts, I want to highlight some of the little details that help make the LC 500 feel special.


Here, my fellow Jalops, are five cool little touches in every Lexus LC 500.

1. Hidden Door Handles

The Lexus LC 500 isn’t the only high end car to have hidden door handles, but as a package they’re executed so well that they deserve mention here.

While some cars hide the door handles in hard to reach places, the LC 500 has them flush with the door. As you unlock the door, they pop out and present themselves for your convenience. What’s cool, though, is that they also can be manually popped by pressing the indented area on the handle.


Plus, the door handles inside are also special. I never like when you have to fumble with electronic door releases inside a car, so I’m glad Lexus skipped that flashiness. Instead, it just made the interior door handle this extremely gorgeous floating hunk of metal.

2. LED Lock Indicator


The common theme of the LC500 is that every little thing is done a tiny bit better than a normal car. Everything you do feels nicer and more polished, down to the turn of the volume knob.

That carries over to the lock indicator; rather than the traditional pop up piece of plastic or red colored tab displaying whether the door is locked or not, Lexus did something cooler. Inside a metal trimmed glass bulb on both doors lies a bright LED. When the door is locked, it glows green and instantly shows you that things are as they should be. Unlock the doors and it shuts off, so you always know at a glance whether drifters and scoundrels can access your Alcantara-trimmed interior.


3. Cascading Tail Lights


L-shaped LED taillights are nice. But if you want those, the $40,000 IS can provide them. This is THE Lexus, so it has to go bigger. How does one make taillights more special? Infinity mirrors.

The LEDs in the taillights are reflected back and cascade toward a vanishing point, making them look highly futuristic.


4. Endless Dash Panel


From the edge of the passenger-side climate vent all the way to the start of the driver’s instrument cluster, the LC 500’s dash is tucked behind a massive pane of glass.

Inside the glass, the massive infotainment display flanks a tasteful analog clock—don’t worry, though, the gauge cluster still has a digital one for the chronographically challenged.


In front of the passenger, the glass covers a lovely metal pattern design that’s lit from the bottom with white LEDs at night, casting a cool glow into the cabin.

5. Customizable Gauge Cluster


Toggle the drive mode in your LC 500 and the gauges will instantly transform to better suit the intended mission. The tachometer becomes the main focus in Sport and Sport +, whereas eco gives you a little meter to show how green you’re being. Which, given that you have a 5.0-liter V8, is never very green.

But that’s not special; changeable drive modes and a gauge to match is par for the course in cars this expensive at this point. The LC 500’s center gauge, though, has one special party trick: It moves.


The physical, metal rim around the digital gauges can slide from the middle off to the side to give you more room for information. Not only that, but it’s perfectly synced with the digital gauges so they move entirely in unison. It genuinely looks like the numbers on the screen are part of the physical gauge, even when I know that isn’t the case.

Mack Hogan is Jalopnik's Weekend Editor, but you may know him from his role as CNBC's car critic or his brave (and maligned) takes on Twitter. Most people agree that you shouldn't listen to him.

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