Crazy Lexus IS 300 with 713hp

Normally, I wouldn’t post a video like this, but the insane power of this car needs to be shared. (Funny thing is, at lower speeds, it still managed to retain its Lexus characteristics.)

Lexus RX Commercial: Lift-Off

The latest in Lexus’ series of Actively Safe commercials managed to give me the creeps very effectively:

No, really…where was the dog during the crash?

Lexus GS Video: 1998 Motor Trend Import Car of the Year

This video of Motor Trend television awarding the Lexus GS the 1998 import car of the year award is extraordinary if only for the sheer amount of praise heaped on the vehicle:

“Almost as good as a new Corvette.” “Matching or exceeding the German traditions in every measure possible.” It’s no wonder why the second-generation GS was such a success, with compliments like that (from Motor Trend of all places!).

Lexus Europe 2008 YTD Sales

Lexus Logo

Lexus Europe have reported their 2008 January to June sales, and the result is very similar to the US numbers. For the first six months of the year, 24,859 vehicles have been sold, a 14% decrease from last year.

The press release also mentions that 35% of all Lexus’ sold in Europe are hybrids, which is down from 37% last year. (Hardly a significant drop, but it’s worth mentioning.)

In addressing the drop in sales, the Toyota press release included a very interesting quote:

‘2008 has been challenging as we prepare for a new product offensive and face tougher external pressures,’ said Tadashi Arashima, President and Chief Executive Officer of TME. ‘We are confident of entering a new phase of growth in-line with the introduction of 18 models, including two hybrids, to Europe. Each model will bring improved fuel efficiency, helping to expand our low CO2 sales mix.’

With eighteen new models (!!!) about to be introduced, it looks like Toyota/Lexus is about to begin a major offensive in Europe.

[Source: Infibeam]

New Toyota Hybrid is Expected

Lexus Hybrid Engine

Japanese newspaper Nikkei business daily is reporting that a new Toyota hybrid will be introduced next year:

Toyota Motor Corp plans to produce 100,000 units a year of a new hybrid-only model slated for release in 2009 at a subsidiary in southern Japan, the Nikkei business daily reported on Saturday.

The new car, which will be Toyota’s second dedicated hybrid model after the hot-selling Prius, will have a 2- to 2.5-litre engine and will also be sold under the company’s luxury Lexus brandname, the paper said.

You may remember last month’s announcement/retraction about this very vehicle, but to recap: Toyota VP of R&D Masatami Takimoto stated that there would be three hybrids announced; the next-gen Prius, a new Toyota, and a new Lexus. However, this was later retracted by Toyota, who said that it was one Toyota & one Lexus.

What’s the big deal? Well, the common opinion is that the new Lexus hybrid will be a variation on the Prius, but that’s less likely if indeed there’s a new Toyota in the works. If you consider the Toyota lineup, I would say a hybrid Rav4 is the best fit, which means Lexus may have a BMW X3 competitor on the way.

[Source: Reuters]