It will likely be an electric version of the UX small crossover or a small hatchback.
Prepare to cross off another brand from the list of automakers without an EV as Lexus has just announced it will introduce its first car sans a combustion engine next month. It will follow the recent debuts of what will be mass-produced electric vehicles like Honda’s E, Volvo’s XC40, and Mazda’s MX-30. The important disclosure coming from Toyota’s luxury division was not made in a separate press release, but in the same one talking about the fascinating LF-30 concept currently on display at the Tokyo Motor Show.
Gallery: 2019 Lexus UX 200: Review
All that Lexus has to say for the time being is that it “plans to unveil its first BEV in November 2019 – broadening our response to the needs of various regions around the world.” The identity of the model has not been disclosed, but reports are suggesting the vehicle in question will be a fully electric version of the UX small crossover. Alternatively, it could be a small hatchback in the same vein as the 2015 LF-SA concept.
One possible hint leading into the UX’s direction can be found in the LF-30’s press release where Lexus says the mysterious EV will be followed early in the next decade by a newly developed platform catering to battery-powered cars. Also in the early 2020s, Lexus will introduce its first plug-in hybrid production model.
Seeing as how the company explicitly says it’s working on a dedicated architecture for EVs, it leads us to believe next month’s car will be based around an existing product that has a combustion engine. By the middle of the next decade, Lexus promises to have electrified derivatives of all products in the portfolio, with the goal being for PHEVs and EVs sales to eventually surpass those of regular ICE cars.
Now that we know the first zero-emissions Lexus will premiere in November, it could mean the vehicle is going to receive its world debut in the latter half of the month at the Los Angeles Auto Show. Of course, there’s also the possibility of a dedicated event where the EV would not have to share the spotlight with the competition.