Lexus: No Plans to Release Sub-$30k Models

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Lexus will not be heading downmarket to compete with its German competitors, says Lexus USA general manager Jeff Bracken in an interview with Automotive News:

“We will not head down below $30,000,” said Bracken in an interview here. “We have Toyota and Scion to handle that price level for us.”

Bracken acknowledges the CLA and 1 series are attracting younger, first-time buyers, but said it’s too early to say that will help Mercedes and BMW long-term.

He said: “We don’t know how loyal those new customers will be.”

Toyota USA senior vice president also weighed in on the issue:

Bob Carter, senior vice president of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., said Mercedes and BMW need small, high-mileage vehicles to meet stricter 2016 U.S. Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards. But Lexus has sister brands Toyota and Scion to carry that torch, he said.

That’s a competitive advantage that lets Lexus concentrate on more premium and higher-margin vehicles, Carter said.

“By not diluting its brand image, Lexus will stay focused,” he said. “It lets Lexus hit on higher levels, in segments more traditionally associated with luxury.”

By running counter to its competitors, Lexus has an opportunity to separate itself from the pack. BMW & Mercedes are cashing in on their rich luxury heritage by introducing affordable models, whereas Lexus is now looking to occupy the more rarified position these brands used to occupy a decade ago — an interesting turn of events, to be sure.

[Source: Automotive News]


  1. Wow! The "L" word. I haven't heard anyone at Lexus mention LUXURY for quite some time. Please do re-focus on luxury, rather than sportiness or aggression. I want those soft buttery leather seats back in production again, not the hard BMW-esque sports seats Lexus now seems to fit in its vehicles.
    • That's where the grandpa ES comes in I guess.
    • Agree! Im tired of reading the Word "agressive" all the time when guys like this blogger are discussing Lexus.
    • First, change slogan back into "The pursuit of perfection" rather than strange "amazing creating". Let do Nissan/Renault/Infinity the job of overdesigning cars every 2-4 years and let Lexus be more traditional and smooth. That means, more BENZ than BMW. Mike
  2. No surprises with this announcement since it was similarly stated several months back.
  3. It is not about sportiness vs. comfort. It can be both. Good thing is if Lexus focuses on luxury cars (can be both sporty and comfortable) and does not go down market. That is really an advantage for Lexus compared to BMW and Mercedes and even Audi. I want to work for Lexus.
  4. Damn str8! Because they are not desperate, sell-out, bottom-feeders, like some companies. "By not diluting its brand image, Lexus will stay focused....."Dilute. Brand. Mercedes. Keep in mind, Mercedes has become desperate sell-outs for two reasons. One, they want to sell-out, as in sell the maximum number of cars possible, and beat out BMW for sales titles that they both DESPERATELY care about, and then lie to your face, saying they don't, while piling $4k in the hood in Q4. So the first reason is plain as day. The second reason is because of CAFE considerations, and their inability to sell hybrids, diesels, or anything fuel efficient. They can't do it, they don't know how that works, and they are just weak in that area, and they have to get their corporate fleet MPG average up. So they MUST bottom-feed to avoid government penalties up the wazoo. Lexus sells about 20% of their volume as hybrids, between the ES, CT and RX hybrids, so they don't need help from Toyota or anybody else to manage their CAFE. 4-banger, high EPA numbers (who knows what it really does on the street), and high sales. They sell-out their brand image, but make that paper, and take titles from BMW, which is their mission..... BD
  5. It's all very well an good saying this, but if the CT isn't any better than some of its German rivals which are priced below $30k then I don't see how that's a smart strategy. If Lexus regards the CT as a luxury vehicle which is a step above the new CLA and A3 then it will need to significantly improve the model at the next update.
  6. The current cars are already just redressed Toyota models anyway in far too many cases. What's smarter... A new "budget Benz", or a Camry or Avalon that is somehow $10k more?