Like its parent company Toyota, Lexus plans to modernize its entire product lineup with new architecture, powertrains, components, and assorted luxury features in the next few years. The global shift of customer interest in crossovers is leading this product revamp for Lexus.
Crossovers are selling like hot cakes all around the world. Every automobile manufacturer is scrambling to come up with its own flavor of the UV so as to pull in more customers into its fold. The demand is such that even supercar and ultra-luxury carmakers like Rolls-Royce, Lamborghini, and Bentley had to bend to the trend and produce cars like the Cullinan, Urus, and Bentayga.
In this scenario, Toyota is pretty far ahead in the game with an existing range of crossovers. Lexus though, focused mostly on luxury sedans with a minimal UV portfolio. Having to adjust its strategy according to shifting consumer demand, the company is launching a new product offensive led by a new crossover, the Lexus UX.
Toyota’s luxury automobile arm is tapping into its parent company’s new platforms to come up with new-age products. Toyota debuted a new architecture recently, dubbed TNGA (Toyota New Global Architecture) which will underpin future Lexus cars.
The new UX (Urban Explorer) is a hot new almost-SUV that shares a little of the TNGA platform and builds upon it with fresh new styling. Directed mostly towards the young buyer, this compact crossover is incidentally the first Lexus to be part of a subscription program. Powered by the new Toyota Corolla’s 168hp engine with automatic transmission, the UX sits at a medium height above the ground like the C-HR. Expect the baby Lexus to arrive at dealerships in December 2018.
Next in line for a revamp is the NX. This midsize crossover got a facelift in 2017 and is expected to spawn a new generation by late 2020. While it is based on the wildly popular Toyota RAV4, it doesn’t clone the Toyota’s development cycle and marches at its own pace.
The Lexus RX is a segment-leading midsize luxury crossover. It received a major redesign in 2016, maintaining its bestselling position in the Lexus portfolio, so there will not be any major facelift or generation change with the successful model until 2020 model year. Updates, if any, will be mostly cosmetic and technical.
The Lexus GX is another solid, stable seller for the brand. It is based on the old-school body-on-ladder construction that it shares with the Toyota 4Runner. Despite the aging platform, it is still going strong. Lexus could retouch the GX’s design in 2020 or 2021, followed by a major redesign in 2022.
Last but not the least, the huge ultra-luxurious Lexus LX could get fresh new livery or special editions in the coming months. Lexus also began selling a two-row version of the Land Cruiser-based behemoth for a slightly lower price. This model is also posting strong sales for the company leading us to believe there are no plans for a redesign at least until 2022 model year.