Lexus IS, RC, and CT Cancelled in Australia


A new side pole impact design rule, known locally as ADR 85, will require Lexus to cancel the IS sedan, RC coupe, and CT hatchback in the Australian market effective October 31. ADR 85 requires all new cars sold from November 1, 2021, to pass a difficult new side impact test that Lexus claims is yet to be introduced in other markets.

The new Australian regulation is aligned closely with the European ECE135 standard but has not been adopted in other markets such as the United States. As such, the IS and RC will continue on in the North American market but the CT was removed from the lineup there in 2017.

After the retirement of the GS sedan in 2020, this change will leave only the ES, LS, and LC as Lexus’ range of passenger cars down under. Lexus will maintain the UX, NX, and RX crossovers in the lineup.

While many Lexus enthusiasts have praised the design of the 2021 IS, it’s removal from much of Europe due to emissions regulations, and now subsequent removal from the Australian market due to crash test standards, seem to be proof that an all-new IS will be required if Lexus wants to maintain the nameplate outside of North America.

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Second refresh IS is not present on European market because of emissions? No, that cannot be true.
 

CrisB

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In EU, or at least in Italy it’s not a problem of emissions, as car less eco of Lexus still run and could be sold easily.

Itis Marketing.

Or commercial problems.

It happes that in EU the customers want only the range of mini-suvs.

Sedans, coupes or at least the CT dramatically decreased the numbers here in Italy, same for RC or LS.

Most sold in Lexus range are NX and now UX, especially second hand, from occasional Lexus customers that does not know the story of the brand, they easily think Lexus is like Kia or Hyundai

The dealer tell me they sell most demo, used, or old models than new, if new, the most cheaper version.

Most of the “old customers” that liked and own the IS, don’t want to buy, instead, an ES or a Suv.
sure.y they can’t go for a LS because the price, or the LC because too sporty.

So they change brand, dealer told me they lost a high percentage of customers.

So, from the side of the dealer he said me that cancel here IS, it was a big mistake.

From my perspective, I bought the first IS200 Sportcross 15 years ago, and had an IS250, two IS300H, my wife two CT.
When I need to change my 2ND IS (MY2017) and heard the new IS will not be available in Italy, I was able to buy a demo RC300H F Sport full optional, from 2019, that is not so easy to find here.

It is the best choice I could made in my opinion, as a suv or an ES, surely could no give me the same emotions in term of design or performance.

I reputed the RC300H one of themost beautiful Lexus, still have the heritage of the sport side of Lexus, details that comes from LF-A and so on.
 
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Safety issues? So that's the new excuse for Lexus becoming an all SUV brand? After killing the same models in Europe, without any explanation. You mention emissions, but what about the IS 300h ? Not only don't we get an IS 500 in Europe, that you could justify with tighter emission rules, but the IS has vanished from the catalogue in several countries, or is about to do so. And no dealer thinks that it will come back, even as a new model. It's all about SUVs now, with a bit of ES (which is too large for European streets), and, curiously, the LS that only the Japanese ambassadors will buy...

So, Lexus just killed off the IS in Europe, allegedly because customers only buy SUVs, and here we have Genesis arriving in Europe, not only with a saloon G70, but also with a minimalist wagon-like "shooting brake" version, specially for the European market. Lexus wanted to compete with the German premium triplets and yet never offered a wagon, just the Sport Cross for 4 years (way ahead of the shooting brake trend) that they never really tried to sell in Europe. I surely hope that Genesis has the better market analysis for Europe and after 20 years of being a faithful Lexus client, maybe it is time to try something else. Especially if they go full electric soon. Kind of makes you think about how the Sony versus Samsung rivalry ended for smartphones...
 

CrisB

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Safety issues? So that's the new excuse for Lexus becoming an all SUV brand? After killing the same models in Europe, without any explanation. You mention emissions, but what about the IS 300h ? Not only don't we get an IS 500 in Europe, that you could justify with tighter emission rules, but the IS has vanished from the catalogue in several countries, or is about to do so. And no dealer thinks that it will come back, even as a new model. It's all about SUVs now, with a bit of ES (which is too large for European streets), and, curiously, the LS that only the Japanese ambassadors will buy...

So, Lexus just killed off the IS in Europe, allegedly because customers only buy SUVs, and here we have Genesis arriving in Europe, not only with a saloon G70, but also with a minimalist wagon-like "shooting brake" version, specially for the European market. Lexus wanted to compete with the German premium triplets and yet never offered a wagon, just the Sport Cross for 4 years (way ahead of the shooting brake trend) that they never really tried to sell in Europe. I surely hope that Genesis has the better market analysis for Europe and after 20 years of being a faithful Lexus client, maybe it is time to try something else. Especially if they go full electric soon. Kind of makes you think about how the Sony versus Samsung rivalry ended for smartphones...
👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏
 

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Safety issues? So that's the new excuse for Lexus becoming an all SUV brand? After killing the same models in Europe, without any explanation. You mention emissions, but what about the IS 300h ? Not only don't we get an IS 500 in Europe, that you could justify with tighter emission rules, but the IS has vanished from the catalogue in several countries, or is about to do so. And no dealer thinks that it will come back, even as a new model. It's all about SUVs now, with a bit of ES (which is too large for European streets), and, curiously, the LS that only the Japanese ambassadors will buy...
It is not that simple. To meet this new side-impact requirement would probably need a major structural change. Any major change is costly and automakers will do it only if they can earn back their investment either through higher prices, keeping the revised model on sale for a long enough period of time, or spreading the change among a large number of models (in large markets).

Lexus cannot raise Australian prices of the IS and RC without reducing sales even lower than they are now.

Seeing that the IS and RC are already old models (with perhaps only 3 more years on the market in their current form), they will not be on sale long enough to recover development costs.

And seeing that other markets -- namely Lexus' largest market, North America -- do not require this change, Lexus has only a small number of vehicles to be sold (only in Australia) to earn back its investment.

This change has become too expensive for slow-selling models that likely will be replaced in the not-too-distant future.

The IS and RC are slow-selling models in most markets, with the exception of North America. That is why they are being cancelled in the EU and Australia, but being kept on in North America.

So, Lexus just killed off the IS in Europe, allegedly because customers only buy SUVs, and here we have Genesis arriving in Europe, not only with a saloon G70, but also with a minimalist wagon-like "shooting brake" version, specially for the European market. Lexus wanted to compete with the German premium triplets and yet never offered a wagon, just the Sport Cross for 4 years (way ahead of the shooting brake trend) that they never really tried to sell in Europe. I surely hope that Genesis has the better market analysis for Europe and after 20 years of being a faithful Lexus client, maybe it is time to try something else. Especially if they go full electric soon. Kind of makes you think about how the Sony versus Samsung rivalry ended for smartphones...
I highly doubt that you will see an IS Shooting Brake, despite the fact that Genesis is offering such a model. There are 2 main reasons for this.
  1. Genesis is only just entering the European market so it is still trying to prove itself to shoppers that it is a brand worth buying. It does that -- obviously -- by trying to offer what it believes buyers want (it does not really know yet what buyers want because it is a new market); all Genesis models being offered in Europe are gambles, and some will turn out to be more expensive gambles than others. Lexus, however, is now an established brand in Europe; it does not have to prove itself like Genesis does, and so it can afford to sell models that it knows will sell (such as ES) and cut models that do not sell (IS and RC).
  2. Lexus is at a disadvantage in Europe. It is not Lexus' home market and neither is it a large market for Lexus. Lexus' home market (Japan) and largest market (North America) do not buy station wagons. Lexus cannot afford to build an IS Shooting Brake only for a small market.
The closest thing to a station wagon that we will see from Lexus, I believe, will come in the form of something that has crossover styling cues but sits lower than the current RX and NX crossovers. Maybe the new RZ will be more like a station wagon/shooting brake than a car-based SUV.
 
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CrisB

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that it knows will sell (such as ES)
I can assure you that in Italy, and I suspect even in Europe, the next one to be cut will be the ES.

I talked with the most two important dealers of my region, in the North East Side of Italy, the 80% of the people that go into their doors want an NX (if they have some more money), and the others a UX.

Better inf they are used, demo, samples and so on, no request for roof, accessories, special models and so on.

Another slice of the cake is people with money, they go better for the RC, but he said less because the large amount of NX on the street decreases the brand value of Lexus that in Italy is still seen as a niche.

ES, LS not asked here, very few, in fact, they have more ES demo units to sell than a request for new cars: remember that in Italy the ES Luxury with ML and paint is about 70/72K €, even for rich customers THAT car is considered TOO expensive because at the end is the less Lexus than what they expect, I have tried and confirm: very slow, little noisy, not good assembly... definitely not what I remember from my IS 2014 and 2017 or the RC300H that I'm driving, even if it is 2018-19 MY

LC, never seen one, or maybe just one, bought from a rich industrial owner in red.

They make a video of the delivery as it was the only one the dealer sold.

They both said the cut the IS, was a mistake… very close to the mother of all the mistakes here that were the IS200D with the Diesel engine, proclaimed by a great success reached for the EU market (a request from the dealers) and refuse at all by the customers.

Anyway, what it counts now is to sell, so I can understand they decide to swap some of the reputations for more units sold.

It's a point to fo view from Italy, other markets are not affected by this, when you go to the Japanese website you could see the full range, including IS, RC, CT too and a boat! And to be honest, it's pleasure for the eyes.
 

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