2021 Jaguar F-Type vs. 2020 Lexus RC

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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Both the F-Type and the RC have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

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The F-Type comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The RC’s 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 10,000 miles sooner.

Jaguar pays for scheduled maintenance on the F-Type for 4 years and 50,000 miles longer than Lexus pays for maintenance for the RC (5/60,000 vs. 1/10,000).

Reliability

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A hardened steel chain, with no maintenance needs, drives the camshafts in the F-Type’s engine. A rubber cam drive belt that needs periodic replacement drives the RC’s camshafts. If the RC’s belt breaks, the engine could be severely damaged when the pistons hit the opened valves.

The battery on the F-Type is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures that can degrade battery life. By keeping the F-Type’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The RC’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.

Engine

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The F-Type has more powerful engines than the RC:

Horsepower

Torque

F-Type P300 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder

296 HP

295 lbs.-ft.

F-Type P380 3.0 supercharged V6

380 HP

339 lbs.-ft.

F-Type R 5.0 supercharged V8

575 HP

516 lbs.-ft.

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.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the F-Type P300 RWD gets better fuel mileage than the RC 300 RWD (23 city/30 hwy vs. 21 city/30 hwy).

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the F-Type’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The RC doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The F-Type V6/V8’s standard fuel tank has 1.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the RC (18.5 vs. 17.4 gallons).

Transmission

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The F-Type’s launch control uses engine electronics to hold engine RPM’s precisely in order to provide the most stable and rapid acceleration possible, using all of the available traction. The RC doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

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

F-Type

F-Type R-Dynamic

F-Type R

F-Type opt.

RC

RC F Sport

Front Rotors

14 inches

15 inches

15 inches

15.7 inches

13.2 inches

14 inches

Rear Rotors

12.8 inches

12.8 inches

14.8 inches

15 inches

12.2 inches

12.2 inches

The F-Type offers optional heat-treated ceramic brake rotors, which last ten to twenty times as long as conventional cast iron rotors, don’t rust, don’t fade during repeated high speed braking, and their lighter weight contribute to better braking, handling and acceleration. The RC doesn’t offer ceramic brake rotors.

The F-Type stops much shorter than the RC:

F-Type

RC

70 to 0 MPH

137 feet

178 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the F-Type has larger standard tires than the RC (F:245/45R18 & R:275/40R18 vs. 235/40R19). The F-Type R’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the RC (F:265/35R20 & R:305/30R20 vs. F:235/40R19 & R:265/35R19).

The F-Type’s standard 275/40R18 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the RC’s standard 45 series tires. The F-Type’s optional 255/35R20 front and 295/30R20 rear tires have a lower 35 series front and 30 series rear profile than the RC’s optional 40 series front and 35 series rear tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the F-Type offers optional 20-inch wheels. The RC’s largest wheels are only 19-inches.

Suspension and Handling

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The F-Type’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The RC doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the F-Type is .6 inches wider in the front and 2.4 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the RC.

The F-Type R Coupe handles at 1.00 G’s, while the RC 350 pulls only .85 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

Chassis

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The Jaguar F-Type may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs up to about 400 pounds less than the Lexus RC.

The F-Type is 9 inches shorter than the RC, making the F-Type easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Cargo Capacity

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The F-Type Coupe has a much larger trunk than the RC (14.4 vs. 10.4 cubic feet).

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the F-Type Coupe offers an optional power trunk, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button. The RC doesn’t offer a power trunk.

Ergonomics

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Unlike the driver-only memory system optional at extra cost in the RC, the F-Type has standard driver and passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

The F-Type’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. An easy entry system costs extra on the RC.

The F-Type’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The RC’s parking brake has to released manually.

The F-Type’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The RC’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

The F-Type’s optional Park Assist can parallel park by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The RC doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Model Availability

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The Jaguar F-Type comes in coupe and convertible bodystyles; the Lexus RC isn’t available as a convertible.

Recommendations

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The F-Type was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” in 2014. The RC has never been an “All Star.”

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