In an interview with Wards Auto, Lexus USA VP of Marketing Brian Smith explains Lexus has no immediate plans to release another subcompact car beyond the CT:
There currently are no plans for an entry-level non-hybrid car to slot in under the all-new ’14 IS sport coupe, although Smith says that remains a possibility if the market demands it. Lexus retails the compact hybrid hatchback CT 200h in the U.S.
Luxury competitors have been forced to offer entry-level vehicles to meet fuel-economy mandates, but Smith says Lexus, due to its grouping with Toyota and Scion, does not need such fuel-sippers.
However, he says Lexus will continue to monitor the trend toward small, entry-level luxury vehicles. And if there’s sufficient demand, “Lexus might go there someday.”
The introduction of a proper coupe and a compact crossover are the two largest opportunities for the Lexus lineup right now, but the C-Segment is turning into a key battlefield for luxury brands (see the new 1-series, B-Class & A3) and may be one of the best ways for Lexus to grow its brand worldwide. Definitely an interesting market to watch.
(I’m still of the mind that Lexus should build a sports car based off the GT-86/FRS platform, but would that even be classified as an entry-level model?)
[Source: Wards Auto]