LexusSC 430

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Base model shown as 2010 2dr Conv
2010 Lexus SC 430 2dr Conv

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Top Features of Base Model

  • Hard-top convertible
  • Powerful V8 engine
  • Luxury interior with wood and leather
  • Mark Levinson audio system
  • Smooth-shifting six-speed transmission

When it was first released in 2001, the Lexus SC 430 was marketed as the "jewel of Lexus." This was understandable considering it was the first ever convertible from the luxury automaker. Positive reviews of the time show that many people felt that this sports coupe lived up to its moniker. The 430 was part of the SC series' second generation. It enjoyed a 10-year run from 2001 to 2010 before the automaker retired it from the U.S. market. Marketers billed the SC 430 as a classic grand touring convertible that hearkened back to the driving experience of the 1980s. This made sense given its classic exterior design, luxury interior, and roaring V8 engine. The last edition of the SC 430 was the second iteration of the nameplate. As a nod to the 20th anniversary of the SC series, the car's retirement came with an Eternal Jewel Limited edition. This sold 200 units for collectors and featured throw-back technology such as a cassette-deck stereo system. Perhaps the most attractive part of the SC 430 was the raw power of its rear-wheel drive powertrain. With a massive V8 engine, it reached 60 mph from a dead stop in just under six seconds. This coupled with its standard luxury cabin features made it a favorite of car collectors who wanted to add a luxury sports coupe to their repertoire.

The Lexus SC 430's Exterior Design

Throughout the life of this model, designers strived to maintain a classic sports coupe look that complemented the modern performance and technology. One of its premium features is a power-retractable convertible hardtop, which drops with the push of a button in 25 seconds. The ride inside the vehicle stays quiet via sound-dampening materials in the undercarriage and wheel wells. Car buyers had a choice between nine paint hues to accentuate its lobed exterior design. By 2010, the available colors were as follows:

  • Black Sapphire Pearl
  • Costa Azul Mica
  • Golden Almond Metallic
  • Matador Red Mica
  • Mercury Metallic
  • Obsidian
  • Smoky Granite Mica
  • Starfire Pearl

Furthermore, the lower panels on the body got a coat of anti-chipping paint to protect it from rocks and debris.

Interior Design of the Lexus SC 430

As a luxury sports coupe, the vehicle pampers shoppers with a standard suite of luxury and advanced technology features in the cabin. This includes pricey materials like leather and wood trim. The leather trim isn't limited to the seats and steering wheel—even the armrests, seat belt guides, and console have leather coverings. Wood trim accents this leather-dominated interior decor on the console, instrument panel, and doors. The dark Espresso Birdseye Maple wood elegantly matches the lighter-hued camel-colored leather. The overall effect makes riding in this car like being on the bridge of a luxury yacht.

State-of-the-Art Features and Luxury Amenities

Technology really accelerated in the 2000s. That's why engineers tried to keep up with the emerging connectivity that car buyers expected from luxury vehicles at the end of the decade. Designers also made sure music lovers had a cutting-edge sound system to enjoy during road trips. This edition featured an upgraded navigation system and an integrated Bluetooth phone book that made placing calls easier with cellphones. Its voice-activated system was state-of-the-art at the time, offering drivers the ability to handle calls without taking their hands from the wheel. The SC 430 also featured a package of XM Satellite Radio services, like XM NavTraffic and NavWeather, that made it possible to plan routes while on the go. The technology package also included a luxury Mark Levinson audio system.

Safety Features of the 430 Lexus SC Have

Lexus engineers paid attention to safety when they designed the SC 430. It features several safety and security systems that combine to provide a safe driving experience that dovetails with its high performance. These include front and side airbags designed to detect whether an adult passenger is present before deploying. There are also front knee airbags to protect passengers’ legs in head-on collisions. This sports car also includes several electronic systems designed to enhance stability and control in difficult road conditions. These include an advanced anti-lock braking system and vehicle stability control. Together, these sensor-driven systems help drivers maintain traction when performing high-speed turns and coping with difficult weather.

What Kind of Engine Is in the 430 Lexus SC?

This is a luxury vehicle designed for heart-pounding acceleration. To achieve that experience, engineers dropped a 4.3-liter V8 engine into a lightweight, ground-hugging chassis.

How Does the Lexus SC 430 Drive?

The V8 results in some impressive raw speed. In addition, the transmission delivers smooth

responsiveness as it shifts through six gears. With a quarter-mile time just over 14 seconds and a top speed of 149 mph, this car's 288-horsepower engine delivers a genuine race-car experience.

Are There Any Benefits with the Transmission?

The automatic transmission adjusts to changing road grades and sudden speed changes using Lexus's Shift Logic Control, and the driver has the option of manually shifting when climbing and descending steep hills. Combined with Lexus's Adaptive Front-Lighting System, which adjusts the headlamp's direction as you drive, it makes cross-country road trips enjoyable regardless of the terrain or time of day.

What Was New for the 2010 Edition?

Its final iteration didn't bring any major updates to the SC 430 besides the special edition produced as a send-off for the last year of production. Designers did add a new set of 18-inch wheels that featured an updated six-spoke design. There were also a couple of other minor exterior touches added, such as puddle lamps for the side mirrors.

Did the 2010 Edition Unveil Any New Technologies?

The most noticeable updates were the addition of iPod and USB connectivity, an optional subscription to XM satellite radio, and the luxury Mark Levinson audio system. A new navigation system was also added to the lineup.

Is the 430 Lexus SC a Powerful Car?

Lexus's SC series vehicles are not considered leaders of the pack when it comes to horsepower. What the SC 430 lacks in power, though, it makes up for in luxury design. This combination of luxury and sports coupe performance is what defines the Lexus SC 430.

Pros and Cons of the 2010 Lexus SC 430


  • Power convertible hardtop
  • Accelerates to 60 mph in 5.8 seconds
  • Luxury interior materials and technology
  • Smooth automatic transmission


  • The suspension system is not high performance
  • Some consider the exterior design outdated
  • Not a fuel-efficient vehicle for commuters
  • Competing sports coupes performed better
Model History

This edition of the SC series made its debut at the Paris Auto Show in 2000 and entered production in 2001 as the second-generation model descending from the SC 400. It was originally billed as a grand touring hard-top convertible that came equipped with a V8 engine and the exterior styling of a luxury sports coupe. Over the course of its 10-year history, it received only modest design updates. Reviews for the convertible were quite positive at the time of its initial release. The general consensus was that that price matched the luxury delivered. By the time these cars were discontinued in 2010, the inventory price was between $34,212 and $35,996. In 2005, the second version of the SC 430 received a redesign of its alloy wheels and new technology features like Bluetooth connectivity. The brand continued to languish in the later 2000s, and sales dwindled until it was discontinued in the summer of 2010. However, many grand touring lovers still consider the Lexus SC 430 to be at the top of its class.

Specs & Key Features of the 2010 Lexus SC 430


Body Style
2-Door Convertible
288 hp
Passenger Doors
Passenger Seating
Rear Wheel Drive
City MPG

Key Features

  • Audio
  • Back Up Camera
  • Bluetooth
  • Cruise Control
  • Heated Seats
  • Leather Steering Wheel
  • Sat Nav

More Features

  • 4.3L DOHC SFI 32-valve V8 engine -inc: continuously variable valve timing w/intelligence (VVT-i)
  • Electronic throttle control system w/intelligence (ETCS-i)
  • 6-speed automatic sequential electronically controlled transmission -inc: intelligence (ECT-i), OD, gated shifter, pwr mode, snow mode
  • Liquid-cooled transmission oil cooler
  • Rear wheel drive
  • Front/rear double wishbone suspension -inc: coil springs, gas-filled shock absorbers
  • Front/rear stabilizer bars
  • Vehicle speed-sensitive progressive pwr rack & pinion steering
  • Pwr front ventilated & rear solid disc brakes
  • Dual stainless steel exhaust w/chrome tips
  • Tool kit
  • 18" x 8.0" 6-spoke aluminum wheels
  • P245/40ZR18 summer tires
  • T145/70R17 compact spare tire w/steel wheel
  • Pwr-retractable aluminum hardtop w/open/close button
  • Body-color bumpers
  • Chrome accented grille
  • Two-bulb headlamp design -inc: HID lowbeam lamps, independent halogen high beam lamps, auto-on/off, adaptive front lighting system (AFS), washers
  • Integrated fog lamps
  • LED brake lamps
  • Body-colored chrome accented electrochromic pwr heated mirrors -inc: puddle lamps, integrated turn signals, auto-tilt in reverse, memory, defoggers
  • Water-repellent door glass
  • Ultra violet & heat reducing glass on all windows
  • Rear wind deflector
  • Variable intermittent front wiper w/mist cycle
  • Body color chrome accented door handles
  • Mark Levinson AM/FM stereo w/in-dash 6-disc CD/DVD changer -inc: 240-watt amplifier, MP3/WMA, Bluetooth, (9) speakers, automatic sound levelizer (ASL), radio data system (RDS), aux audio input, USB input, integrated XM satellite radio w/90 day free trial subscription, XM NavTraffic, XM NavWeather w/90 day free trial subscription
  • Pwr mast antenna & FM diversity
  • 10-way pwr heated front bucket seats -inc: 4-way adjustable headrests, pwr lumbar, memory
  • Center console -inc: dual compartments, aux pwr outlet
  • Dual front cupholders
  • Carpeted floor mats
  • Illuminated scuff plates
  • Wood & leather-trimmed pwr tilt/telescopic steering wheel w/audio controls -inc: auto tilt-away, memory
  • Trip computer -inc: avg mpg, instant mpg, drive time, avg mph, digital clock
  • Warning lights -inc: fuel level, coolant level, oil level, oil pressure, battery, engine, parking brake, ABS, air bag, door ajar, seat belt, tail lamp bulb
  • Dual LCD trip odometers
  • Outside temp gauge
  • Pwr windows w/auto-up/down
  • Pwr door locks -inc: two-turn driver door unlock, anti-lockout
  • Retained accessory pwr
  • Key-integrated multi-function remote entry system -inc: audible lock, 2-stage unlock confirmation, trunk release, panic function, remote-linked window opening
  • Lexus personalized settings (LPS)
  • HomeLink garage door opener
  • Cruise control
  • Pwr fuel filler door & trunk release
  • Alarm system w/engine immobilizer -inc: valet function for trunk, glove box, lower center console box & convertible top operation
  • HDD-based navigation system -inc: voice command, LCD display w/back-up camera, Bluetooth
  • Automatic climate control -inc: lap vents, smog sensor, auto-recirculation, air filter
  • Rear window defogger w/auto-off timer
  • Semi-aniline leather interior trim
  • Wood trim
  • Electrochromic rearview mirror
  • Illuminated entry
  • Dual sun visors w/illuminated vanity mirrors
  • Wood trimmed shift knob
  • Front seatback pockets
  • Front door pockets
  • Front passenger net pocket
  • 4-wheel anti-lock brake system (ABS)
  • Electronic brake force distribution (EBD) w/brake assist (BA)
  • Vehicle stability control (VSC) w/on/off switch
  • Traction control (TRAC)
  • Front/rear crumple zones
  • Dual side-impact beams
  • Daytime running lamps
  • Dual front SRS airbags w/passenger detection sensor
  • Dual front seat-mounted side-impact SRS airbags
  • Dual front knee airbags
  • All-position 3-point seat belts -inc: front pretensioners w/force limiters
  • All-position emergency locking retractor (ELR)
  • All-passenger automatic locking retraction (ALR)
  • Rear seat top tether anchors & ISO-FIX lower anchorage brackets
  • Direct tire pressure monitor system
  • Collapsible steering column
  • Impact dissipating interior trim
  • First aid kit
  • Emergency interior trunk release

Warranty Options for the 2010 Lexus SC 430 (4)










Roadside Assistance



Available Trims for the 2010 Lexus SC 430 (1)

2dr Conv
MSRP Starting at

Safety Ratings for the 2010 Lexus SC 430

2010 Lexus SC 430 2dr Conv

US NHTSA Crash Test Results

Results shown are for the 2010 Lexus SC 430 2dr Conv:

Overall Rating
Overall Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
Overall Side Crash Rating
Side Barrier Rating
Side Barrier Rating Driver
Side Barrier Rating Passenger Rear Seat
Side Pole Rating Driver Front Seat
Combined Side Rating Front Seat
Combined Side Rating Rear Seat
Rollover Rating