In the coming years, Lexus will skip plug-in hybrid models and instead move to the development of all-electric vehicles and hydrogen-powered fuel-cells.
Speaking to Auto Express at last month’s Frankfurt Motor Show, Lexus Europe boss Alain Uyttenhoven said the luxury arm of Toyota doesn’t need hybrid models in order to meet strict emissions targets.
“We do not need to have plug-in hybrid vehicles. It’s a loophole in the market. We will reach the [CO2] targets without them,” he said.
Uyttenhoven said that Lexus will start its EV and hydrogen push by offering alternatively-fuelled variants of the LS sedan and LC coupe to avoid the exorbitant costs of installing the tech in cheaper vehicles. However, the executive did say that Lexus must eventually offer more affordable electric and hydrogen vehicles if it wants to turn a profit.
“In Europe, the more successful electric car sales are at the high end but in the premium market, 50 per cent of cars are sold below 40,000 Euros. If it’s more than that, how will people afford it?”
Interestingly, Uyttenhoven said there’s a possibility the carmaker’s first all-electric vehicle could be a small but premium model.