Lexus won’t follow the same electrification strategy as BMW and Mercedes-Benz with their range of plug-in hybrid models, choosing instead to focus on fully-electric vehicles.
Lexus’ current electrification strategy includes basic hybrid models, but those models won’t be replaced. The coming years will see the brand introduce only full-electric and fuel-cell powered models.
Alain Uyttenhoven, Lexus’ European boss, said as much in an interview with :
“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.”
The fuel-cell powered sedan will be based on the LF-FC concept and should arrive sometime in 2020. The LS and LC models are also slated to get electric versions.
The first fully-electric Lexus could possibly be a small, premium electric car, with Uyttenhoven adding:
“It could be. A lot of people who have reached a certain level of wealth like to have a small premium car more than a bigger, more mainstream brand of car.”
We’ll have to wait to see what the company cooks up. Let’s just hope they don’t look too funky.
Amazon Alexa Comes To Toyota And Lexus Models
Toyota will offer Amazon Alexa connectivity in select Toyota and Lexus vehicles featuring the Toyota Entune 3.0 App Suite and Lexus Enform App Suite 2.0, respectively.
With Alexa, Amazon’s cloud based voice service, customers can ask for directions, control entertainment, get the news, add items to a shopping list, or even control features of their home in their car. That’s pretty extensive list of capabilities considering some automakers use voice assistants to perform very limited vehicle functions such as controlling lights, locks, and engine starting.
Zack Hicks, senior vice president and chief information officer of Toyota Motor North America and chief executive officer and president of Toyota Connected, stated:
“Voice services are rapidly becoming more popular and through our integration with Amazon Alexa, Toyota and Lexus customers will soon be able to easily speak to Alexa in their cars while on-the-go.”
Now if only Toyota would join the party and add Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to its cars as well…
Lexus RX L Brings Third-Row Seating To RX Lineup
Due to strong demand, Lexus has stretched its popular RX crossover to accommodate a third-row of seats, giving buyers a choice between six- or seven-passenger configurations.
The Lexus RX L is 4.3 inches, has a steeper tailgate window angle to improve headroom, and features a lever that folds the second seat forward to provide access to the third-row can be accessed.
The standard seven-seat configuration employs a 40/20/40-split bench for the second row, while an available six-seat edition features second-row captain’s chairs that allows third-row passengers to simply walk in.
To provide more foot room for third-row passengers, engineers positioned the second row slightly higher than the third. A rear tri-zone climate control system further contributes to the comfort.
The base RX 350L is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 that produces 290 horsepower and 263 pound-feet of torque. Front-wheel drive is standard, while all-wheel drive is available as an upgrade.
If you want something more efficient, there is an RX 450hL hybrid powered by a 3.5L V6 paired with two electric motors for a combined output of 308 horsepower. It comes standard with all-wheel drive, with the real wheels being powered by the electric motors.
The 2018 Lexus RX 350L has a starting price of $48,665 in the United States, representing a premium of nearly $5,000 over the five-passenger RX350.
Tesla Model S Wins ‘World’s Greatest Drag Race’
Each year, Motor Trend holds a ‘World’s Greatest Drag Race’ featuring some of the fastest, most exciting sports cars, supercars and hypercars ever made. And this year, not a single one of them won.
The high-octane race part of the magazine’s “best driver’s car” competition and features the finalists doing a simultaneous quarter mile race against each other on an airstrip — the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, this time around.
As you would imagine, the list of contenders is what every car enthusiast’s dream is made of. See for yourself:
- Ferrari 488 GTB
- McLaren 570GT
- Porsche 911 Turbo S
- Mercedes-AMG GT R
- Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE
- Porsche 718 Cayman S
- Lexus LC 500
- Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio
- Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport
- Mazda MX-5 Miata RF
- Aston Martin DB11
- Nissan GT-R NISMO
The Mazda MX-5 RF, despite being in contention for the “best driver’s car” title, is grossly underpowered and was forced to watch from the sidelines, wishing the track was a little twistier. To make things interesting, Motor Trend decided to replace the Mazda that wished-it-could with the Tesla Model S P100D Ludicrous, a car we’ve all wanted to see frolic with the likes a Ferrari, McLaren and Porsche in terms of pure speed.
And — you guessed it — the relatively unassuming, electric-powered Model S, the heaviest car on the track, beat them all! In fact, it would have crushed the race if not for the Ferrari 488 GTB and Porsche 911 Turbo S being hot on its heels. It’s quite something to see…
Guess which car came in last?