Toyota's Luxury Brand Lexus to Debut its First Electric Vehicle
【Summary】Unsurprisingly, the debut is scheduled to be made in China where the electric car is expected to be popular.
Toyota and luxury sibling Lexus have quite a few hybrids in their lineups. Neither Japanese brand, though, has a fully-electric offering. It's really strange. Toyota, being one of the first automakers to offer hybrids on a mass scale, has fallen well behind brands like Chevrolet, Hyundai, Audi, and Nissan that all have electrified vehicles. Instead of electric cars, Toyota, and to some part Lexus, has decided to go after fuel-cell vehicles. Well, even Toyota can't wait any longer to enter the electric-vehicle scene, as the Japanese automaker will be debuting its first production electric car later this month. It's going to be badged as a Lexus, though.
First Lexus Coming Soon
Earlier this week, Lexus confirmed that the automaker's first "battery electric vehicle" would debut at the Guangzhou International Automobile Exhibition on November 22. Besides confirming that an EV is on the way, the press release is short on a lot of news. The only other thing that's noteworthy is where Lexus will be aiming the vehicle.
"Specifically crafted to suit the needs of audiences in China and Europe, this further advances the brand's desire to offer a portfolio of electrified powertrain choices for diverse audiences worldwide," states Lexus.
While we're just guessing, we don't think Lexus will offer the EV in the U.S. The reasoning? The automaker would've said something at the recent Los Angeles Auto Show if it had anything to share. Since it didn't share anything and specifically call out North America in the press release, we don't see the U.S. as a market – at least at the beginning.
Built For Chinese Markets
Without anything to go off of, it'll be difficult to say what the electric vehicle will look like. Lexus recently showcased the LF-30, which is an electric vehicle with 536 horsepower and stylish gullwing doors. The vehicle was unveiled at this year's Tokyo Motor Show and is unlikely to be a source of inspiration for the upcoming EV. Unfortunately, with its dramatic styling, total of four electric motors, and drone vehicle on the top of its roof, there's very little that we could see making it to a production vehicle.
Then there's the LF-SA (pictured above) that came out at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show. Recent reports indicate that Lexus has been planning to come out with an urban electric vehicle, so there's some semblance to the idea that the upcoming EV would be based on the LF-SA and be a city-oriented vehicle. With crossovers being very popular, we expect the EV to be a crossover. The only thing we know for sure is that it will have an "ELECTRIC" badge at the back.
By the next six years, Toyota wants to have 10 electric vehicles on sale. For Lexus, the luxury brand is looking for electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles to surpass the sales figures of vehicles with internal combustion engines.
Vineeth Joel Patel
Joel Patel has been covering all aspects of the automotive industry for four years as an editor and freelance writer for various websites. When it comes to cars, he enjoys covering the merger between technology and cars. In his spare time, Joel likes to watch baseball, work on his car, and try new foods
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