Lexus Racing will introduce its LEXUS RC F GT3 in the GT3 category races in Japan and the United States starting from the 2017 season.

The Lexus RC F GT3 was developed based on the RC F, the automaker’s high-performance coupe, specifically to compete in the GT3 category races, a worldwide popular customer racing category.

Lexus Inteernational President Tokuo Fukuichi commented, “Lexus is embracing new challenges as a luxury lifestyle brand as it strives to inspire customers with amazement and excitement that exceed the imagination. Our decision to enter in customer motorsports will both refine the performance of our high-performance F models and give our customers an amazing experience.”

Following the car’s debut at the 24 Hours of Daytona, one of the world’s three great endurance races, from Thursday, 26 January, to Sunday, 29 January (U.S. time), Lexus will enter two vehicles each in races held in Japan and the U.S. during the 2017 season. In the U.S., the vehicle will compete in the GTD category of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship series under 3GT Racing, and in Japan, it will compete in the GT300 class of the Super GT series under LMcorsa.

Based on the RC F sports coupe, the RC F GT3 is wider, lower, and has been lightened to 1,250kg. Equipped with a modified version of the RC F’s V8 engine, maximum output will exceed 540 horsepower.

Toyota Racing’s Technical Chief Officer and Director Koei Saga said, “I’m pleased that we are able to introduce the Lexus RC F GT3 in the GT3 category, which represents the highest level of customer racing. The first step is to place four cars in races in the U.S. and Japan, but in the future we will nurture our RC F GT3 into a model that is loved by worldwide customers.”

Lexus Racing will put more focus on participatory motorsports with the production model-based Lexus RC F GT3 racecar, strengthen the performance image of the Lexus brand and offer surprise and excitement to an even larger audience worldwide.