Lexus’ electrified ambitions have allowed it to make a name for itself, with hybrid cars accounting for more than a quarter of their global sales last year. Now, they have to up their game if they want to stay competitive, and an electric vehicle is mandatory.
Such a model is coming, according to President Yoshihiro Sawa, quoted by AutoNews, and it will be sold in Europe and China.
The new electric vehicle is a necessary asset to help boost the company’s sales in both markets, which are governed by stricter emissions regulations. It’s mandatory that they launch it sooner rather than later, but the Lexus official couldn’t provide a time frame.
“Definitely here we need an EV in the future”, Sawa said during the 2019 Shanghai Auto Show. “But I cannot say when or how.”
He also couldn’t say what vehicle will get the zero-emission conversion. However, the answer might lie in a recent trademark: the UX300e, which was secured with the European Intellectual Property Office a few months back.
Lexus’ parent company Toyota, which is one of the biggest hybrid carmakers globally, has already dipped its feet into the electric car segment with the C-HR. The battery-electric vehicle was introduced in Shanghai and will be built by the GAC-Toyota and FAW-Toyota joint ventures for the Chinese market.
On the other hand, Lexus has made a controversial bet on minivans, by presenting the LM, during the same event. A rebadged version of the Toyota Alphard with an obvious focus on luxury and comfort, the people carrier is strictly limited to the Asian continent, where it will go on sale in two trim levels called the LM 350 and LM 300h. The first one uses a 3.5-liter V6 gasoline burner and the second one has a hybrid powertrain.
Note: Lexus UX 250h F Sport pictured