The 2024 Lexus LC 500 Convertible Is a Wireless Charger Away From Perfection

The Lexus LC 500 is my favorite car on sale today. It looks gorgeous, it drives gorgeous, it’s well-built, luxurious, adequately quick, the volume knob always reminds me of an expensive hi-fi, and the noise. My god, the noise. Like most Lexuses from a certain era, though, there’s always been one fly in the LC’s ointment: the infotainment system. It was one of those screens that was controlled by a laptop-style touchpad, made so that the display itself could sit high and far within the driver’s line of sight but not require a big reach to operate. As much sense as it made on paper, it was a bit of a disaster in practice.

The Big Fix

For 2024, though, Lexus has fixed this. Instead of the old touchpad-controlled 10.3-inch display, there’s a 12.3-inch touchscreen running the new Toyota/Lexus operating system as well as wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. There’s even a hard button now that whisks you to the climate screen that lets you adjust seat and steering wheel heating, proving that Lexus really did listen to specific criticisms. This is, objectively, a massive improvement.

The touchscreen works as advertised. It’s been brought further forward for easy reach, 12.3 inches is plenty, and it indeed responds when you touch it now. However, and it pains me to say it, I hesitate to call it perfect. For starters, the screen itself is still noticeably lower rent than what you’d get in a new BMW or Mercedes. The black levels just aren’t there and, for whatever reason, album art in CarPlay Spotify is a little blurry. And, at the end of the day, while Toyota and Lexus’ current infotainment OS is a massive upgrade from what came before it, it’s just OK in the grand scheme of the industry.

The most glaring omission to me, though, is the lack of a wireless charger. Running wireless CarPlay without wireless charging conjures up the same emotions as driving an electric car in the dead of winter. It’s a nice experience underscored by constant low-grade range anxiety as the battery that sits in my pocket and powers my one window to the world saps itself dry. This absence is especially disappointing considering how well-conceived parent company Toyota’s wireless chargers have been lately. Of course, this is easily solved by simply plugging your phone in, but asking LC owners to do that feels like a bit of a faux pas considering this Convertible version starts at $108K.

Finally, and this is petty, the new screen means no more analog clock on the dash. Sorry, watch guys.

Chris Tsui

Still Amazing

While the new screen implementation isn’t quite as perfect as I’d hoped it would be, the rest of the LC is as exquisite as ever. Lexus’ 5.0-liter naturally aspirated V8 remains the star of the show making 471 horsepower, 398 lb-ft of torque, and the most entertaining noises you’ll hear south of $200,000. If my memory serves, this is my fifth time driving an LC 500 (and I intend to keep driving them every single time Lexus offers one up), and I’m still taken aback by the animalistic wails and cracks coming from this V8.

You know that moment in Taylor Swift’s Eras concert when she brings the house down seamlessly transitioning from “Don’t Blame Me” to “Look What You Made Me Do”? I have seen that shit over a dozen times at this point, I know it’s coming, but it still manages to alter my brain chemistry with its sheer awesomeness every time. Getting back into an LC 500 and letting it stretch its legs on an on-ramp is a bit like that. It is absolute cinema.

One downside of driving the LC is not being able to see the outside from behind the wheel. Just look at the damn thing. Ultrasonic Mica Blue 2.0 paint is new for this year as are the 21-inch wheels which, to my eye, are a slight downgrade from the rims that came before but look nice nonetheless. This blue and white interior may seem silly in pictures, but it is lovely in person. LC surrounds you with rich leathers, robust plastics, and a healthy array of alloy touch points—just like the metal shift knob in a Honda Civic Type R, that hi-fi-smooth volume knob gets real finger burn-y when left in the sun, folks. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Lexus’ grand tourer is a wonderful, fantastic car that, seven years into its existence, remains my favorite automobile one can buy new off a showroom floor. It’s as beautiful, exciting, charming, and livable as ever. Now that it’s had its biggest flaw corrected—corrected, not perfected—it’s also objectively the best it’s ever been. Its lack of a wireless charger and a proper luxury car-grade touchscreen does leave room for improvement, though.

The 2024 Lexus LC 500 isn’t perfect just yet, but it’s getting awfully close. Perhaps that’s coming in the 2026 LC. Because there will indeed be a 2026 model year LC 500, right, Lexus?

Right, Lexus?

Chris Tsui
2024 Lexus LC 500 Convertible Specs
Base Price (Canadian-spec as tested)$108,150 ($141,326 CAD)
Powertrain5.0-liter V8 | 10-speed automatic transmission | rear-wheel drive
Horsepower471 @ 7,100 rpm
Torque398 lb-ft @ 4,800 rpm
Seating Capacity4
Cargo Volume3.4 cubic feet
Curb Weight4,540 pounds
0-60 mph4.6 seconds
Top Speed168 mph
EPA Fuel Economy15 mpg city | 25 highway | 18 combined
Quick TakeDollar-for-dollar, the most entertaining car on sale today.
Chris Tsui

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