Lexus’ cheapest car for now and, apparently, the foreseeable future, the $32,960 CT 200h
Last Thursday Toyota held its annual holiday lunch for Detroit area media types, bringing in high level executives from all of its brands for the event.Â Lexus chief Jeff Bracken took the opportunity to say that Lexus will not follow Mercedes-Benz, whose CLA is selling well, into the sub $30,000 market.Â ”We will not head down below $30,000,” Bracken said. “We have Toyota and Scion to handle that price level for us.”
From its introduction in September through November, M-B has sold almost 11,000 of the compact front drive CLA, which has a MSRP of $29,900 before destination charges. (Read More…)
Speaking at a preview event for the next-generation Hyundai Genesis, Hyundai CEO John Krafcik defended his company’s decision to forgo establishing a seperate luxury channel for cars like the Genesis and Equus. While the rationale put forth usually revolves around the exorbitantly expensive pricetag for launching a new brand and an all-new sales network, Krafcik put it from another angle.
While other automotive sites are patting themselves on the back for their comprehensive blanket coverage of the Los Angeles and Tokyo Auto Show, the TTAC Staff robot has been burning the midnight oil to bring you news from the third major auto show being held this week, Auto Guangzhou, held in China’s third largest city. While not yet at the rank of LA and Tokyo, the Guangzhou show is major enough that Lexus decided to debut the new Lexus CT200h, the first major update to Toyota’s luxury version of the Prius hybrid since the CT200h was introduced in 2010. It gets cosmetic changes, being the last Lexus model to get the corporate “spindle” grille, as well as better structural rigidity, suspension refinements, better aero and improved NVH levels. Despite the sportier look, the CT200h continues with the same 134 horsepower 1.8 liter version of Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive system, driving the car through a continuously variable transmission. Lexus estimates EPA gas mileage of 43/40 mpg city/highway and 42 mpg combined. Lexus is offering the CT200h in red for the first time, and you can also opt for a two-tone finish with a contrasting black roof. (Read More…)
Toyota has been teasing a Lexus coupe for a couple of years now with the LF-FC concepts. At the Tokyo Auto Show introduced two versions of the new RC coupe, one oriented towards performance, the other with green cred, slated to go on sale some time in 2014. Based on the GS platform, the RC 350 sports a 314 horsepower 3.5-liter V-6 gasoline engine and an eight-speed automatic transmission. The hybrid RC 300h, has a combined 217 hp, from a 2.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine matched with a 105 kw electric motor, driving through a continuously variable transmission. Both RCs use double wishbones up front and a multilink rear suspension.
After taking a sales hit due to tsunami-related production woes, Lexus has been trying to regain their mojo with a new product offensive. Things started out with the new Lexus GS sedan that Jack Baruth and I loved on and off the track, followed by a revised RX. With the redesigned IS, the bulk of their lineup has been overhauled. Initially,Â I was a little concerned that the Lexus IS sedan would receive nothing more than a new nose and some LED lights for 2014 but the Japanese 3-Series fighter came out swinging when we were invited to the launch event earlier in the year. I came away impressed with the IS 350′s road manners, butÂ most buyers will be shopping for the less powerful IS 250 and it’s taken us this long to get our hands on one.
Two of the newest Lexus products got an early reveal prior to their Tokyo Motor Show debut. The Lexus RC (above) is a coupe version of the new IS, with the IS350′s 3.5L V6 carrying over. World markets will get a hybrid version, dubbed the RC300h. Also debuting is the LF-NX concept, expected to preview a sub-RX sized crossover.
First of all I wanted to thank you for your great blog, I read it daily. Now I recently have bought a 2010 Lexus RX 350 with 30K miles on the clock. the original warranty will expire this coming January, since I have bought the car I have put about 5K on it without any problems, now should I buy the extend warranty or not?
The car was a returned 3 year lease which I got a pretty good deal since the dealer was a family friend; at that time they quoted me $2000 for the 5 year 75K extended warranty. (Read More…)
If reliability is the No. 1 trait your next car must have, you may then opt to visit your nearest Lexus dealership before considering anything from the Ford dealership across the street as far as Consumer Reports is concerned.
This is the Lexus LS460, the luxury boomer that built the brand. It was the Lexus LS that launched the Automotive Battle of Hastings back in 1990, attacking the European establishment with devastating competence. The 2013 Lexus LS460 is still that great, and yes, the ride is still more Chris Craft than hardtail.
The LS 600hL is the pinnacle of Toyota and Lexus engineering. It is the largest Lexus sedan, the brand’s most expensive model, the most expensive hybrid in the world and, with the death of BMW’s V8 ActiveHybrid system, it is once again the most powerful hybrid on sale. Yet the LS 600hL hasn’t had an easy time of things. The large luxury sedan has been lambasted for being the antithesis of green thanks to its EPA combined 20 MPG score. Critics also question whether the 600hL’s enormous premium over the LS 460L can ever be “justified.” I too questioned the logic behind the 600hL at first, but then I spoke with someone who changed my mind. Before we dive in, let’s talk about the elephant in the room. The 600hL starts at $119,910. With all the options checked, you land at $134,875. Without destination. Put your eye balls back in their sockets and click past the jump as we dive into an alternate universe.
Mercedes-Benz E-Class sales shot up 44% in August 2013, a 2008-unit gain. This improvement followed up on Julyâ€™s 10% year-over-year improvement, which put an end to four consecutive months of decline for the now-recently facelifted E-Class, Mercedes-Benzâ€™s core midsize model.
Thanks to our friends over at Autospies, you can get a better look at the Lexus LF-NX crossover concept, officially introduced today at the Frankfurt Motor Show. One might say that the LF-NX is a polarizing design, that is, if there was anyone who said that they liked it. The response since studio photos were released last week has been pretty much unanimously negative. Judge for yourself.
You can see the complete gallery at Autospies. (Read More…)
Officially this is just a concept, but the Lexus LF-NX is supposed to preview an upcoming competitor to the BMW X1 and Audi Q3. Â Using the familiar 2.5L 4-cylinder hybrid powertrain, the LF-NX will be available in FWD or AWD variants, though specific figures like power output have yet to be announced.
Most legendary cars achieved their status thanks to unique ideas, original design, character (whatever may that be) or joy they bring to their owners and drivers. So, is it even possible for a pragmatic, coldly efficient and mostly derivative car to become a legend?
When the first Lexus, called LS400, was introduced in 1989, it certainly wasnâ€™t the most original car on the market. In fact, it not only looked a lot like a W126 Mercedes S-class of the time, it was even named similarly (remove the L and the car would fit right into the naming system Mercedes started using a few years later). And it was no coincidence â€“ the LS400 was a result of Toyota brassâ€™ decision to move their business upmarket. The Voluntary Restraint Agreement between the United States and Japan limited the number of Japanese cars that could enter the country, making it a smart idea to charge more for each of them and clear more profit. The LS400 might have been a bit of a loss leader at $35,000 for a base model that nobody ever saw in dealerships, but it paved the way for hugely profitable successors and showroom companions like the ES300 and RX300.
Kia has big plans for America. The Korean brand that was written off in the 1990s, and is best known for making inexpensive cars with long warranties, isn’t planning an assault on the mass market. Kia has bigger plans: compete head on with Lexus, BMW and Mercedes. Say what? Yep. By 2017 Kia promises they will be ready. Rather than leaping right into the market, Kia is dipping their toes into the murky waters of the near-luxury pool. In many ways the near-luxury segment is a harder place to compete. This segment is full of aspiring brands trying to move up (Buick and Cadillac), brands that are floundering (Acura), brands that are treading water (Volvo and Lexus’s FWD models ), brands trying to expand down (Mercedes with the CLA)Â and brands that have no idea what their mission is (Lincoln). Into this smorgasbord lands a sedan that managed to be the most exciting car I have driven this year and the most awkwardly named. Now that I have that spoiler out of the way, let’s dive into the Credenza. I mean Cadenza.