Sunday, August 1

Can a car inspire a Michelin star?

Unveiled at the last Goodwood festival held before the pandemic, the LC Convertible is more than just a luxury convertible in the Lexus range. Based on the LC500h coupe, which is offered in our market with hybrid motorization, the LC Cabrio has been conceived from all points of view, to achieve the satisfaction of its exclusive buyers: aesthetics, interior and dynamics. Because starting with the rate, the 155,000 euros that it costs make it tie directly with the best of BMW, Mercedes or Porsche: the 850, SL and 911, respectively.

At 4.76 meters long and only 1.35 meters high, the LC Cabrio has an unmistakable exterior stamp, highly elaborate on the front and rear, and large wheel arches around 21-inch wheels that plant it on the asphalt with monolithic appearance. The lines of the profile trace to that of the LC 500h Coupé from the hood to the rear of the doors, where an increase in height and width begins to house the mechanism of the electric hood. In search of authenticity, this one is made of fabric and folds in a breath (15 seconds and up to 50 km / h), and due to its four-layer construction and the extreme tension of the material when it is unfolded, it hardly increases the interior noise. compared to his tin-roofed brother. By choice of materials, fit and design, the interior of the LC Convertible is directly the Lexus where quality is most evident. Also for technology at the service of comfort, such as the air conditioner at neck height whatever the outside temperature.

In search of sensations, the choice of a single eight-cylinder naturally aspirated gasoline engine is logical. It delivers 477 horses and although it sounds powerful and harmonic in itself, various systems are responsible for enhancing the most glorious notes, canceling out those that interfere with the experience. Mechanically, a series of valves control the sound of the exhaust; in parallel, the audio equipment keeps a program active that changes the equalization depending on the speed of rotation and the sound coming out of the engine, canceling out unpleasant frequencies like headphones with active noise cancellation do.

For all the above, French chef Lionel Beccat has found a direct connection with the LC Cabrio: “Eating and driving are physical sensations that must appeal to the five senses”. A consistent brand ambassador because he shares his birthplace, Europe, with Lexus’ fiercest rivals, and because he has developed his professional career in Japan.

Born in Corsica, his talents blossomed after studying French cuisine with chef Michel Troisgros – a three-star pioneer in introducing French cuisine at the Century Hyatt in Tokyo. Under its influence he moved to Japan, where his philosophy of cooking changed after spending some time reflecting on art. That change was driven by both nature and the honesty of the farmer-producers who interact with the Japanese landscape. “I used to cook to express my way of being, but when I discovered the wonders of Japanese nature and the power that people get from it, I realized that it is the ingredients that should be expressed in the food, and not in the chef ”.

The roads of the upper prefecture of Oita, in southwestern Japan, are the ones to find the connection between driving and the senses that Lexus pursues with its flagship convertible. A setting where you can enjoy the ride quality and the precision of guidance of the LC Cabrio. And the 1,000 kilometers that separate Mount Aso, one of Japan’s most famous volcanoes, from the “Esquisse” restaurant that Lionel runs in the exclusive Ginza district of Tokyo, the necessary journey to reflect on the dish based on that driving experience. .

One of the key ingredients was the wild bird that crossed his mind while driving through the highlands. “Free and wild, but graceful and graceful. That’s the image I had when I thought of the LC Convertible, ”explains Lionel. “What you discover while traveling enriches you, and in my case, as a chef, it is cause for reflection.”

Food and vegetables. One might think at first that they don’t seem related, but Lionel explains that there are definite similarities. Both must attract the five senses of the human being ”. Those words convey the determination of a man willing to satisfy the infinite desires of the senses.

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