When Van Nuys drivers think of Lexus cars, they think of luxury, dependability, and style. It’s easy to forget that the new Lexus cars at Keyes Lexus have racing genes in their DNA as well. From 2006 to 2008, the Lexus brand owned the 24 Hours of Daytona, winning with legendary drivers like Scott Pruett, Juan Pablo Montoya, Dario Franchitti, and Salvador Durán behind the wheel of Riley-modified Lexus cars. In 2017, the automaker returned to racing in a big way.

The 24 Hours of Daytona is considered one of the three most important endurance races. The others are the 12 Hours of Sebring and the legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans. It’s the only 24-hour race held in North America, and kicks off the year’s calendar of endurance races. The Lexus brand makes its return with the Lexus RC F GT3, derived from the Lexus RC Coupe.

The racing version has some key differences from its production counterpart. It’s 1,200 pounds lighter, puts out 90 more horsepower (540 horsepower versus 450 from the V-8 in the production model), and is built to the specifications of the GT3 series. The new team, 3GT Racing, is anchored by Scott Pruett and will have two cars in the hunt, but there are future plans to introduce the Lexus LC 500 (in racing spec) to the GT500 category soon.

The Japanese SuperGT series kicks off on April 8 in Okayama, Japan, giving racing fans (and fans of Lexus cars) plenty to look forward to. We can’t wait to see how the 3GT team performs in the years ahead. To get a closer look at what Lexus is doing closer to home, visit your Van Nuys Lexus dealership. Keyes Lexus is located at 5905 Van Nuys Blvd. in Van Nuys, CA.