So You Can't Afford: Lexus LFA
552-hp 4.8-liter V-10
The inexpensive imitator: Nissan GT-R
In the world of high-end Japanese supercars, these two are the benchmarks. And in this matchup, the less expensive car could actually be the quicker machine.
The LFA is a carbon-fiber V-10 monster that screams to its 9000-rpm redline. It's built in extremely low numbers and it's one of the most expensive cars on the planet. But save your cash. The Nissan GT-R will do almost everything the LFA will do, for $275,000 less.
But Maybe You Can Afford: Nissan GT-R
545-hp twin-turbo V-6
There's a reason the GT-R is nicknamed Godzilla. According to Nissan's internal testing, the 545-hp 2013 GT-R will scorch 60 mph in 2.7 seconds. That's beyond even a motorcycle time—it's sportbike territory. It takes the LFA over 3.5 seconds to do the same job.
Around a track, though, the LFA will be a match for the GT-R. In recent tests, the LFA set a Nürburgring Nordschleife lap time of 7:24, while the LFA Nürburgring Package demolished the production lap record with a blistering 7:15. The previous model GT-R set a best lap time of 7:24, but Nissan says the more powerful 2013 edition will shave a little more than 7 seconds from that time. Not quite enough to dethrone the Lexus.
Still: Is the Lexus's exclusivity, its incredible track potential, and its ferocious V-10 enough to justify the enormous price difference? Not to us. We'd take the GT-R and park a Ferrari 458 Italia next to it in our garage—and still keep more than $30,000 in the bank.