A New Lexus Trademark Hints At A New EV With an Unmentionable Body Style
Remember the Lexus LF-30 Concept that was revealed back in 2019? It was a futuristic concept with extreme styling and what you might expect from Lexus some 30-40 years from now. Even the cabin gave off the aura of a spaceship, so it was pretty clear that it wouldn’t enter production anytime soon. However, a new trademark filed by Lexus in the U.S., Europe, and Australia for the RZ 450e name, could hint that at least some of its DNA is about to head into production. Obviously, the “e” in the name means it will be an EV – one of the many that the company will offer by 2025 – but what kind of vehicle will it be?
For a while now, rumors have been circulating, and it seems as if the Lexus GS may find itself on the guillotine at the end of the fourth and current generation. That generation has been around since 2011 and was just updated in 2015, however, the GS has had some seriously insignificant sales, which is probably why rumors seem to point toward the ES taking the GS’s place in as the mid-sized executive box on wheels. And, considering Lexus sells roughly 10 times more ES than GS models, the rumors make sense. However, we’re now looking at some spy shots that point to those rumors being wrong. We’re guessing the model you see here is the new GS, but it could also be the next-gen ES as it’s currently about time for a generational shift as well. Either way, there is something fresh coming to Lexus’ stable soon, and if it is the GS, rumor has it that the next-gen GS F will get a 4.0-liter, twin-turbo V-8 that’s good for some 590 ponies and 500 pound-feet of torque.
With that said, the spy shots show a fairly revised model regardless of what it really is, but we don’t know much else about it at this point. It is clearly a hybrid, as the yellow tape on the back window is a safety requirement for hybrids testing on the Nürburgring. Potential debut dates, based on the current life cycle of both the ES and GS, point to a late 2018 debut with the potential to be a 2019 model with 2020 seeming more feasible. So, we should be learning more about what’s lurking under the camo in the somewhat near future. But, until then, we’re going to assume this is a next-gen GS, so let’s take a better look and talk some more about it.
Latest Rumors About Toyota and Lexus Point to an All-New Engine for the next Supra
The rumor mill is churning over at Toyota with reports that the Japanese automaker is finally building a 3.0-liter twin-turbo V-6 engine, codenamed 943F, that it plans to use on the fifth-generation Lexus GS. The model is scheduled to make its debut in late 2017 or early 2018 and will be marketed as a 2019 model. But, according to Japanese media outlet Mag-X, the big takeaway from the fifth-gen GS is the turbocharged V-6, the first production V-6 that Toyota will build in its long and illustrious history.
While there hasn’t been any confirmation coming from either Toyota or Lexus, there is an argument to be made for Lexus to get a turbo V-6, none more so than the increased importance being placed by automakers in downsizing their engines as a way of addressing the increasingly stringent emissions regulations. For its part, Lexus also needs a forced induction V-6 because a lot of its competitors already utilize a similar engine in some form or capacity. It may be time for Toyota’s premium brand to join the fray in that regard and expand its V-6 offerings past the turbocharged inline-sixes that it has used in the past.
If Toyota does take this step, don’t sleep on the possibility of another model eventually using the same engine. Again, this is all speculation but if Toyota wants to maximize the seemingly limitless potential of the returning Supra sports car, having a turbocharged V-6 as an engine option is a great way to do it. At the very least, it would be able to make a big statement in differentiating the sports car with the Toyota GT 86, which currently uses a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. That’s been one of Toyota’s goals anyway so it only makes sense for the company to give the Supra the same turbo V-6 that it is reportedly developing for the Lexus GS.
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What does it take to be a flagship vehicle? For starters, it has to be impressive. Really impressive. It has to define a brand’s look, tout the latest technology, and provide a driving experience that rivals any and all challengers. That’s a tall order, but Lexus is looking to fill it – not with a new two- or four-door, but with an SUV.
Currently leading the marque is the full-size luxury LS sedan. Originally offered in 1989, the LS is expected to see the introduction of its fifth generation for the 2017 model year, complete with all the cutting-edge goodies that Lexus can muster. However, Jeff Bracken, Lexus’ division general manager, spoke to Reuters early in August, saying Lexus might add another flagship model alongside the LS, and that “it doesn’t have to be a sedan.”
The move isn’t all that surprising when considering just how much the premium SUV segment has grown recently. According to Truecar, sales for SUVs priced at $75,000 and above is 44 percent higher this year compared to last, far exceeding the 13.2 percent growth for cars in the same price range.
In the same Reuters interview, Bracken mentioned Land Rover, the Cadillac Escalade and offerings from the major German luxury automakers as examples of the premium SUV done right. Other makes are capitalizing on the demand as well, with Rolls-Royce, Bentley, Jaguar and Maserati all getting in on the SUV game for the first time.
So what will Lexus bring to the table? Bracken said details on the new complementary flagship will be revealed in January, but until then, read on for our predictions.
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The LF-LC has been the subject of rumors since it debuted in concept form at the 2012 Detroit Auto show. Today, a new report from Taiwan claims to have loads of insider information on the production version, which Lexus is calling the LC, including its available engines.
You’ll need to bear with me, as I used translating software to get all of this in English, so there may be a few incorrectly translated items. The biggest news is that the LC will have two available powertrains: one standard gasoline setup and one hybrid. The gasoline-powered model, which will carry the LC 500 name, will feature a 5.0-liter V-8 that churns out 550 horsepower and mates to a 10-speed automatic transmission. The LC 500 will reportedly hit 62 mph in just 4.5 seconds and deliver 26 mpg.
The hybrid model, which Lexus will name the LC 500h, will come with a 3.5-liter V-6 mated to electric motors. The combined output will supposedly sit at 400 horsepower, which will put the 47 mpg LC 500h at 62 mph in just 5.5 seconds.
In terms of size, the LC is rumored to be 4,700 mm (185 inches) long, 1,920 mm (75.6 inches) wide, and ride atop a 2,870 mm (113-inch) wheelbase. To help keep the LC’s curb weight between 1,450 and 1,550 kg (3,197 and 3,417 pounds), Lexus will craft the doors, hood, roof, and other sheet metal out of an aluminum-magnesium alloy.
Also rumored is a debut at the 2016 Detroit Motor Show and a production of 600 units per month, 500 of which will hit American shores.
Continue reading for the full story.
Lexus has officially announced it will be bringing a new F-branded vehicle to the 2015 North American International Auto Show this coming January. The new vehicle will accompany the recently launched RC F in the automaker’s growing lineup of performance-oriented cars. However, the two teaser shots here are all the details Lexus has provided.
The images, combined with the recent sightings of a camo-covered – but still obviously sportier — Lexus GS sedan, adds fuel to the fire of an upcoming GS F. Judging by the photos, the character lines and size of the teased car seems to indicate this as well.
So what can we expect? Well Lexus will likely use the same 5.0-liter V-8 found in the RC F, along with its close-ratio, eight-speed automatic transmission. Expect the same 467 horsepower and 389 pound-feet of torque routed to the rear wheels. Then again, Lexus could add some extra ponies to compensate for the larger sedan-sized packaging. The RC F hits 60 in 4.4 seconds; any slower and the GS F runs the risk of not being taken seriously.
While speculating is fun, we can also glean other information from the two pictures. The car will have massive four-piston calipers with slotted rotors surrounded by a beautiful double-spoke-style wheels with matte and bright finishes, all wrapped in performance rubber.
Also included is an updated grille design with a new style of fishhook LED daytime running lights The headlights are also Lexus’ new style of LED bulbs. It should make for an attractive appearance both day and night.
Click past the jump to learn what this model could be.
Well that was a blast, I hope everyone enjoyed it. It was filled with lots of Miata talk so if you are a big fan of fun to drive roadsters, this may be your favorite. If you aren’t a fan of the new 4-th generation Miata, no worries. We have lots of cool stuff for you too.
We start the show with a look in our driveways for the Weekly Wheels. Mark talks about the very large Lexus GX460 and I spend some time talking about towing a horse trailer with the 2014 Toyota Tundra. Oh, you also get the chance to see a cool new Lego Mini Cooper.
For main news stories we talk about the recent sighting of the new Audi TTaround the Nurburgring, a pretty blue Dodge Viper, the all-new Land Rover Discovery Sport announcement and we finish things with the upcoming Kia Optima we just spied in camo.
If you did come for the Miata, well then we have lots for you. We cover all the information we know about the machine from overall size to wheel and tire dimensions. We discuss the design, potential drivetrains, what the weight savings really means and more. We also talk about some of the fun stuff that Keith Tanner from Flyin’ Miata was able to glean from a talk with one of the chassis engineers.
After the Miata madness and the news, we move as always to the Q/A portion of the show. We spend some time discussing winter tires, why you need them, and what you should look for when buying. We also take a few minutes to answer a question about the most recognizable cars in the world.
We wrap things with an Own, Drive, Burn that sees us trying to pick the lesser of three evils; it’s a trio of family-hauling crossovers.
As always, a huge thanks goes out to everyone who listens and watches, with an extra special little thanks to our live viewers. We hope you all have a great weekend and we will see everyone next week.
Don’t forget to leave us questions and Own, Drive, Burn suggestions for later eipsodes!
Ok, this is getting ridiculous. A successor to the Lexus LFA has been a heated topic largely because everybody seems to have an opinion on whether Lexus is planning one or not. A few weeks ago, Lexus Executive Vice President Mark Templin told Automotive News that Toyota President Akio Toyota wants to build an LFA for this generation of vehicles.
But now, Yukihiko Yaguchi, the chief engineer of Lexus’ RC F program, told CarAdvice at the launch of the RC F in New York last week that there are no active plans to build a successor to the LFA.
So who do we believe now?
If we’re basing it on hierarchy, Templin’s statement might have more weight to it, and let’s be honest, we want to believe the guy because he’s the one who said that an LFA supercar successor is going to happen!
Is it possible that Yaguchi, whose statements were said via an interpreter, may have been misquoted? I personally don’t know and I’d like to believe that our colleagues at CarAdvice vetted that information before posting it.
Or maybe both guys are actually saying the same thing but with different timetables? Maybe Yaguchi is right by saying that Lexus has no immediate plans, and Templin is also correct that Lexus is planning on building one, just not right now?
Are you confused yet?
Hopefully, we have a clearer answer soon because all this “will they-won’t they” talk is giving me a headache.
Click past the jump to read more about the Lexus LF-A.
Hyundai appears to be considering entering the luxury crossover market to compete with the Lexus RX, Audi Q5, and Cadillac SRX. That’s according to an interview Edmunds.com had recently with Hyundai CEO Dave Zuchowski.
However, Zuchowski says the main problem with creating a luxury SUV would be having a place to sell it. “We made a conscious decision on our premium products not to establish a secondary distribution channel,” he says. “And that decision, and we absolutely think it is the right decision, has some flow-through impact on products.”
So in other words, Hyundai doesn’t think a premium SUV or crossover would sell well within conventional Hyundai dealerships. The Korean automaker is already traveling down this bumpy road with its classy Genesis and Equus sedans, products that far exceed the Hyundai brand perception held by the general public. Hyundai does have that "dealership within a dealership" concept in use where the premium products are separated from the non-premium vehicles, but apparently the concept isn’t working well enough for it to add an SUV to the Genesis and Equus side of the showroom.
Regardless of the selling method, the SUV itself would likely be based on the seven-passenger Santa Fe. It would likely keep the same underpinnings and powertrain, but have completely unique styling and an interior that matched the luxuriousness of the all-new 2015 Genesis sedan.
Zuchowski and Hyundai appear to be stuck behind their decision to remain a singular brand and not create a secondary luxury label like Toyota’s Lexus or Nissan’s Infiniti. Zuchowski uses the example of Toyota and Lexus in selling mechanically similar products with different levels of refinement. "The RX is basically the Toyota Highlander and they can charge a premium for that vehicle because they are sold in different showrooms," Zuchowski says.
For now, Hyundai’s plans for rolling out a Lexus RX competitor are on hold, with Zuchowski implying that once a sales method has been reached, the automaker could move forward.
Note: Photo is of the Hyundai Intrado Concept
Click past the jump to read about the Hyundai Intrado Concept
The Lexus SC was first launched by the luxury division of Toyota in 1991. But if there was nothing impressive about the design back then, all changed with the launch of the second generation in 2002. But this is still not enough. If Lexus wants to still be important on the personal luxury coupe class they need to do something about it. And they will with the launch of the third generation SC in 2009.
The launch of the LF-A Roadster Concept at the Detroit Auto Show gave us a pretty good idea of how the future Lexus models will look like. And inspired by the Concept’s design here’s how we presume the third generation SC might look like.
Lexus has to come with something big that will easily compete with models like BMW 3-Series. In order to do this, the exterior changes aren’t the only one that are required. There are important changes required under the hood too.
Click on read to find out more about the 2010 Lexus SC.
The engineers and designers at Lexus continue to use their groundbreaking LF-A premium sports car concept as a medium for expressing their ideas about what a high-performance sporting vehicle not only can be, but should be. In this latest expression of the LF-A, they have removed the car’s top to create a high-performance roadster.
After the concept that was unveiled in 2005 at Detroit Auto Show and after many spy shots you have seen, the Lexus LF-A is anything but a secret. Set to be unveiled at Tokyo Motor Show and go on sale winter 2007 at a price of about $170.000, LF-A will be a competitor for the 2008 Nissan GT-R, 2008 Acura NSX, Porsche 911 and Audi R8.