Previews

Zip Code: 20149

2018 Lexus RC 300: Preview, Pricing, Release Date

, Automotive Editor - September 25, 2017

Model Preview

Lexus debuted the new entry-level version of the RC, the RC 200t, along with the base all-wheel-drive version, the RC 300, in 2016. Now, just two years later, the RC 200t will become the 2018 RC 300, while the all-wheel-drive version will simply gain the “AWD” designation. On top of these changes are a few technical and safety updates, and a slight power boost for the RC 300 AWD.

In terms of looks, the sleek and stylish RC will be a carryover. Being so new, it’s not much of a shock that it’ll hold onto its swoopy roofline, long nose and short overhangs. The only change of note on the outside will be the new Flare Yellow exterior color option on F Sport models.

Inside, the looks will remain the same for the RC 300, save for its new standard 10.3-inch multimedia screen. There will be a few other behind-the-scenes tech updates inside the RC 300, including Lexus Enform Destination Assist being free for its first year, available Enform App Suite 2.0 with NPR One, Scout GPS Link, and Sign Up apps, optional Dynamic Voice Recognition, and free Scout GPS Link on the base infotainment system for three years.

Lexus RC 200t

Under its hood, the 2018 RC 300 will import the 2017 RC 200t’s 2.0-liter four-cylinder, so it will produce the same 241 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. This engine will continue to use an eight-speed automatic transmission. The RC 300 AWD, however, see’s its 3.5-liter V6 increase by 5 hp to 260 hp and 236 lb-ft of torque. Backing the 3.5-liter engine will be the same six-speed automatic transmission as before.

The RC 300 will continue with the same Top Safety Pick Plus rating from the IIHS, as there are no structural changes in store for it. What will change, though, is that Lexus Safety System+, which includes the all-important automatic emergency braking, will be standard.

Pricing & Release Date

Lexus makes no mention of when we can expect to see the 2018 RC 300 in showrooms, but it should be within the next few months.

Pricing is also not officially available, but with only small changes, we expect the RC 300 to start around the same range as the 2017 RC 200t, which is $41,150 (destination fees included).

The key competitors for the 2018 Lexus RC 300 will include the BMW 4-Series, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe, and the Audi A5.

Learn about the current RC 200t on sale now»

Pictured: 2017 RC 200t

Lexus RC 200t

Lexus RC 200t

Lexus RC 200t

Lexus RC 200t

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Used Lexus RC in 20149