I basically stole this Auto Art Lexus LC 500

It’s been so long since I’ve scored like this…

It’s been far too long since I had scored an absolute steal of a deal off of a eBay auction. One of those deals that’s just so good, you feel like you’ve won the lottery. This 1/18 scale Lexus LC 500 from AutoArt I’m showing off today came to me through one of those deals. The LC 500 had been one of those models on my list forever, I just never pulled the trigger. I stumbled upon an interesting eBay auction for one earlier this spring. I threw in a bid, forgot about it, and ended up winning!

The model was located in Puerto Rico; an island off the coast of Florida that is a territory of the United States. Shipping to my location in the south-eastern corner of the US mainland was an eye-watering $34! However, this worked in my favor as it scared off any potential bidders from the opposite coast. There was only one other bid at the time that I found the auction: $99. I entered a bid of just $1 more, and I ended up the winner. $134 for a recent Auto Art release is a good deal, at least to me!

I’ll never forget the first time I saw an LC 500. It was completely unexpected; I didn’t even know Lexus was coming out with such a car. After moving down the east coast, pre-pandemic, I was wandering around a local Cars and Coffee meet to get a sense of what the car scene was like near my new home. A local Lexus dealer had brought one of these to the show, finished in this exact Infrared color. It caught me by surprise, because I had been completely ignorant of Lexus’s new offerings. They lost me after transitioning to their corporate “Predator grille” design, but the one on the LC 500 just works! The rear of the car looks like some sort of Star Wars character’s helmet; its LED taillights are like staring into an infinity mirror. The interior is incredible and punches way above its price tag. It might take a few more years of depreciation beatings before I can afford one, but it’s certainly a car I wouldn’t mind in my garage one day.

Five years later, I finally have an Auto Art model of that exact car I saw in my collection. I had to open this one up as soon as it arrived and snapped a bunch of pictures. As with all recent Auto Art models, the Lexus is a composite ABS bodied car. The paintwork is fantastic and offers rich red tones across the body panels. Its headlights look like jewelry, although I thought the plastic covers could have lined up better with the body seams. A rear trunk-lid spoiler can be activated with your fingernail, but I found the hinges of the trunk itself to be a bit flimsy. Other details include a carbon fibre roof decal and an opening hood. The LC 500’s heart is a 5.0L 2UR series V8 engine, but all the plastic covers in the engine compartment are hardly worth photographing.

The last few years have been difficult for model collectors with rising prices and retail discounts becoming more and more scarce. Even eBay has become a wasteland of resellers posting their unwanted models with high Buy It Now listings instead of bidding to win it. This Auto Art score was a good deal for me, and gave me hope that the excitement of hunting for models might be coming back around!

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