2012 Lexus LFA Is Our Bring a Trailer Auction Pick of the Day

2023 lexus lfa
2012 Lexus LFA Is Our Bring a Trailer Auction PickBring a Trailer
  • Developed with the full might of Toyota/Lexus engineering, the Lexus LFA, built from 2010 to 2012, is one of Japan's greatest supercars.

  • The driving experience is all about that banshee-keening V-10, revving to 9000 rpm in the blink of an eye.

  • This example is a future classic in white and has just 2300 miles on the odometer and is up for auction until May 9.

A fun thought experiment to do is imagine what you might use to burn that last jerrycan of high octane fuel. One more dragstrip sprint in a Dodge Demon? A lap of Laguna Seca in a Ferrari F40? Well, here's one option for you, a Venn diagram overlap between combustion-powered performance and musical instrument.

2023 lexus lfa
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Pick of the day at auction site Bring a Trailer (which, like Car and Driver, is part of Hearst Autos) is this very low-mileage 2012 Lexus LFA, pristine in white. It's chassis number 468 of 500 cars produced, and its 4.8-liter V-10 is one of the best-sounding engines ever made. This car plus a long tunnel is basically Pavarotti hitting the crescendo in "Nessun Dorma," and it's an otherworldly experience. "None shall sleep," indeed.


More on that V-10 in a moment, but first a quick overview of what makes the rest of the LFA so special. Lexus took the engineering of its supercar so seriously that its engineers had to come up with an entirely new kind of loom for weaving the carbon fiber that makes up the bulk of the LFA's chassis. Think of the same level of unified effort that went into the game-changing launch of the LS400 in 1989, then target it at a limited-run hypercar operating at the then-bleeding edge of technology.

2012 lexus lfa engine
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Into this composite materials setting, Lexus placed the jewel that is the 1LR-GUE V-10. Displacing 4.8 liters, the 10-cylinder engine makes 552 horsepower at 8700 rpm, with a redline of 9000 rpm and a fuel cutoff at 9500 rpm. At the time, Lexus said that its engine revved so fast that an analog gauge couldn't keep up (from idle to 9000 rpm in 0.6 second), and it thus fitted a digital rev counter.

2023 lexus lfa
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Further, the 1LR-GUE is not only a Toyota/Lexus product but was made in partnership with Yamaha. The association between Toyota and Yamaha stretches back to the million-dollar collectible Toyota 2000GT, every one of which was hand-built by Yamaha. As a manufacturer of pianos and wind instruments, Yamaha has metallurgical expertise that was often forged into the best Toyota engines, with a particular focus on airflow through the head.

For the LFA's V-10, Yamaha's work was to make it sing. Its engineers did so by carefully tuning the surge tank that feeds the 10 individual throttle bodies, so that the sound feeds into the cockpit as the revs climb. A click of that column-mounted paddle shifter, and the driver is literally bathed in a 10-cylinder symphony.

This example has just 2300 miles on the odometer. It has had age-affected items changed out with fresh tires and a brake flush as of March of last year. Niceties include fitted luggage and a 12-speaker Mark Levinson stereo. Next to that V-10, this stereo must feel the same way Antonio Salieri felt about Mozart.

2023 lexus lfa
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The bad news is that, while the LFA sold slowly when new, it is now a highly desirable machine and fetches a premium. The good news is that there's still plenty of high-test at your local pump, and this car stands ready to usher its new owner into one of the best driving experiences on the planet.

As a collector-grade machine, it is of course a lovely thing. But the LFA was built to scream its heart out, and to keep it tucked away is like forbidding a world-class tenor from singing. Head on over to Bring a Trailer to uncork the greatest Lexus aria of them all.

The auction ends May 9.

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