2020 Lexus RC vs. 2020 Toyota 86

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/05

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Lexus RC have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision. The Toyota 86 doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

The RC’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The 86 doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The RC has standard Pre-Collision System, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The 86 doesn't offer collision warning or crash mitigation brakes.

The RC offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The 86 doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The RC’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The 86 doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The RC’s optional blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The 86 doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.

To help make backing safer, the RC’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The 86 doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

The RC’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The 86 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

The RC has standard Safety Connect®, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The 86 doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the RC and the 86 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras and available rear parking sensors.

The Lexus RC weighs 900 to 1115 pounds more than the Toyota 86. The NHTSA advises that heavier cars are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts. Crosswinds also affect lighter cars more.

A significantly tougher test than their original offset frontal crash test, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety does 40 MPH small overlap frontal offset crash tests. In this test, where only 25% of the total width of the vehicle is struck, results indicate that the Lexus RC is safer than the 86:

RC

86

Overall Evaluation

GOOD

ACCEPTABLE

Restraints

GOOD

ACCEPTABLE

Head Neck Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Peak Head Forces

0 G’s

0 G’s

Chest Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Max Chest Compression

20 cm

22 cm

Hip & Thigh Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Hip & Thigh Injury Risk R/L

0%/0%

2%/0%

Lower Leg Evaluation

GOOD

ACCEPTABLE

Tibia index R/L

.56/.43

.97/.72

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and its standard front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the RC the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 202 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The 86 was not even a “Top Pick” for 2016.

Warranty

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The RC comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The 86’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

Lexus’ powertrain warranty covers the RC 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Toyota covers the 86. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the 86 ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.

The RC’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the 86’s (6 vs. 5 years).

Reliability

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To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the RC has a standard 580-amp battery. The 86’s 390-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Lexus vehicles are more reliable than Toyota vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lexus first in reliability, above the industry average. With 2 more problems per 100 vehicles, Toyota is ranked second.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Lexus vehicles are more reliable than Toyota vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Lexus first in reliability. Toyota is ranked third.

Engine

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The RC has more powerful engines than the 86:

Horsepower

Torque

RC 300 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder

241 HP

258 lbs.-ft.

RC 300 AWD 3.5 DOHC V6

260 HP

236 lbs.-ft.

RC 350 3.5 DOHC V6

311 HP

280 lbs.-ft.

86 2.0 DOHC 4-cylinder

200 HP

151 lbs.-ft.

86 2.0 DOHC 4-cylinder

205 HP

156 lbs.-ft.

Fuel Economy and Range

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The RC has 4.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the 86 (17.4 vs. 13.2 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Transmission and Drivetrain

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The Lexus RC comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the 86.

All-wheel drive, available in the RC, provides the best traction for acceleration in wet, dry, and icy conditions. In corners, all-wheel drive allows both outside wheels to provide power, balancing the car. This allows for better handling. The Toyota 86 is not available with all-wheel drive.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the RC’s brake rotors are larger than those on the 86:

RC

RC F Sport

86

86 TRD Special Edition

Front Rotors

13.2 inches

14 inches

11.6 inches

12.8 inches

Rear Rotors

12.2 inches

12.2 inches

11.4 inches

12.4 inches

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the RC has larger standard tires than the 86 (235/40R19 vs. 215/45R17). The RC’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the 86 (F:235/40R19 & R:265/35R19 vs. 215/45R17).

The RC’s optional 265/35R19 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the 86 TRD Special Edition’s 40 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the RC has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the 86. The RC’s optional 19-inch wheels are larger than the 18-inch wheels on the 86 TRD Special Edition.

Suspension and Handling

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The RC has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The 86’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The RC offers an available driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The 86’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the RC’s wheelbase is 6.3 inches longer than on the 86 (107.5 inches vs. 101.2 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the RC is 2.4 inches wider in the front and 1.8 inches wider in the rear than the track on the 86.

The RC 350 handles at .88 G’s, while the 86 pulls only .86 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the RC’s turning circle is 1.9 feet tighter than the 86’s (34.2 feet vs. 36.1 feet). The RC AWD’s turning circle is 1.3 feet tighter than the 86’s (34.8 feet vs. 36.1 feet).

Passenger Space

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Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the RC a Subcompact car, while the 86 is rated a Minicompact.

The RC has 7.3 cubic feet more passenger volume than the 86 (83.8 vs. 76.5).

The RC has 1.9 inches more front headroom, 3.5 inches more front legroom, .8 inches more front hip room and .2 inches more front shoulder room than the 86.

Cargo Capacity

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The RC has a much larger trunk than the 86 (10.4 vs. 6.9 cubic feet).

The RC’s standard folding rear seats are split to accommodate bulky cargo. The 86’s standard single piece folding rear seat is not as flexible; long cargo and a passenger can’t share the rear seat.

With its coupe body style, valet key, locking rear seatbacks and remote trunk release lockout, the RC offers cargo security. The 86’s non-lockable remote release defeats cargo security.

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the RC. The 86 doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

Servicing Ease

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The RC uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The 86 uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

A maintenance reminder system is standard on the RC to save the owner time and money by calculating maintenance intervals for oil changes, air filter replacement, tire rotation, radiator flush, brake pad replacement and transmission fluid replacement based on odometer mileage. This takes the guesswork out of keeping your vehicle in top condition and helps it last longer. Toyota doesn’t offer a maintenance reminder on the 86.

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Lexus service is better than Toyota. J.D. Power ranks Lexus second in service department satisfaction. With a 41% lower rating, Toyota is ranked 14th.

Ergonomics

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The RC has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The 86 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

When three different drivers share the RC, the optional memory system makes it convenient for all three. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position, steering wheel position and outside mirror angle. The 86 doesn’t offer a memory system.

The RC’s optional easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The 86 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The RC’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge - which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The 86 does not have an oil pressure gauge.

The power windows standard on both the RC and the 86 have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the RC is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The 86 prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

If the front windows are left open on the RC the driver can close them at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. (This window function must be activated by your Lexus service department.) The driver of the 86 can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The RC’s power window, power lock and power mirror switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The 86’s power mirror switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

The RC’s optional wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The 86’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The RC offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The 86 doesn’t offer headlight washers.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the RC detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The 86 doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the RC has standard extendable sun visors. The 86 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

The RC’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Toyota only offers heated mirrors on the 86 GT/Hakone.

When the RC with available tilt-down mirrors is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The 86’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

The RC’s standard rear view mirror and optional side view mirrors have an automatic dimming feature. These mirrors can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The 86 has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the RC keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in Summer. The 86 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the RC’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The 86 doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

The RC has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning is only available on the 86 GT/Hakone.

For greater rear passenger comfort, the RC has standard rear a/c vents to keep rear occupants more comfortable. The 86 doesn’t offer rear vents.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the RC has a standard Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The 86 doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the RC owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the RC will cost $2190 less than the 86 over a five-year period.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the RC is less expensive to operate than the 86 because it costs $173 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost less on the RC than the 86, including $188 less for a muffler, $36 less for front brake pads, $11 less for fuel injection, $199 less for a fuel pump and $58 less for front struts.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/05

The Lexus RC outsold the Toyota 86 by 35% during 2019.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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