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Updated Lexus RX Coming to New York Auto Show?

Lexus RX Update

The Lexus RX will be getting an update next year, according to automotive industry source Just Auto:

Even after more than three years of production, the RX remains Lexus’ best seller, especially in the USA, where deliveries are on course to possibly touch the 110,000 mark by year end (98,419 YtD). The next news will be a facelift for North America’s 2020 model year, the updated vehicle likely premiering at next year’s New York auto show.

The RX facelift will likely incorporate design elements of the new UX and updated NX, with the spindle grille becoming less prominent and more integrated into the overall body.

Just Auto also weighed in on the next-generation RX and what it could bring:

The 760X series fifth generation RX should again be built in Canada and Japan. Production is likely to begin in the second half of 2021. There will be standard and long-wheelbase derivatives, and there will probably also be a plug-in hybrid or even a fully electric variant. The architecture will change, the new model to be based on TNGA-K.

A 2021 launch seems ambitious and not in line with current Lexus product lifecycles, though it’s far enough off that the strategy may change. There’s no reason to doubt that the next-generation RX will be offered in standard and long-wheelbase variants, especially when a new model can incorporate the third-row right from the initial concept.

(One thing is for certain, there’s no overstating the importance of the next-gen RX and what it means for the Lexus brand.)

Modellista Debuts Body Kit for New Lexus UX Crossover

Lexus UX Body Kit Modellisa

Japanese tuner Modellista has released a body kit for the new Lexus UX subcompact crossover, boosting up the F SPORT variant with generous ground effects:

Modellista has also developed some LS & LC inspired accents, bringing some chrome to a model with surprisingly little bling:

The body kit is available at Japanese dealerships for ¥232,200 ($2,000 USD), while the chrome accent three-pack will retail for ¥115,560 ($1,000 USD). Availability outside of Japan is doubtful.

No Immediate Plans for Lexus USA Vehicle Subscription Service

Lexus UX Subscription

Lexus USA has no immediate plans to launch a vehicle subscription program, despite initiatives from competitors like Mercedes and BMW — from Automotive News:

As long as the payoffs remain unclear, Lexus isn’t going to “panic and jump in just to jump in,” said Cooper Ericksen, Lexus’ vice president of marketing.

“I think there’s a lot of unanswered questions about how you take a depreciating asset and have a revenue model that is good for the consumer and good for the brand over the long term of that asset,” he told Automotive News on the sidelines of the Los Angeles Auto Show.

Ericksen mentions a general resistance to the idea from dealerships:

“The most consistent feedback we get from dealers on the idea of subscriptions is: ‘Please don’t take away our ability to have this one-on-one relationship with a guest. We value that, and we want to maintain that,’ ” he said.

“Some brands are taking the Tier 1 approach of, ‘We’ll handle everything, and you deliver the vehicle,’ and I don’t think that’s a road we’re going to go down,” Ericksen said.

The Lexus UX will be available with a new leasing program when it arrives in American dealerships later this year. Called Lexus Complete Lease, the new program will be a two-year lease that includes both insurance and maintenance in the price.

The Complete Lease program will launch in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles & Miami before expanding into other markets. There is no vehicle “swapping”, so leasers will remain in the same UX through the two years. Mileage is limited to 20,000 miles in total.

Lexus November 2018 Sales Report

Lexus ES November Sales


Lexus USA has reported 26,446 total sales for November 2018, a 2.5% decrease over last year — here’s the model-by-model breakdown:

MONTH Year to Date (*DSR)
2018 2017 % CHG* 2018 2017 % CHG*
CT 0 8 -100 4 4,681 -99.9
IS 1,830 2,458 -25.5 20,734 23,705 -12.8
RC 213 826 -74.2 3,017 6,677 -55.0
ES 4,222 3,911 8.0 43,099 46,351 -7.3
GS 472 739 -36.1 6,017 6,857 -12.6
LS 902 358 152.0 8,409 3,788 121.2
LC 139 280 -50 1,827 2197 -17
LFA 0 0 0 2 3 -34
Total Cars 7,778 8,580 -9.3 83,109 94,259 -12.1
NX 5,622 5,404 4.0 53,315 51,931 2.3
RX 10,248 10,102 1.4 98,419 94,356 3.9
GX 2,369 2432 -2.6 23,402 23,865 -2.3
LX 429 600 -28.5 4,541 5,260 -14.0
Total Trucks 18,668
Total Sales 26,446 27,118 -2.5 262,786 269,671 -2.9

Please note, all percentages are calculated by the Daily Sales Rate (DSR), which takes into account the number of days in the month that dealerships could sell cars. November 2018 had 25 selling days, November 2017 had 25 selling days.

Lexus LC to Return in Next Year’s 24 Hours of Nürburgring Race

Lexus LC Nürburgring 24 Hour Race

Lexus has announced that a modified LC coupe will race in next year’s 24 Hours of Nürburgring. The LC has been built to race specifications, and incorporates advanced development technologies destined for future production vehicles — here’s a vague list of improvements:

  • Body technology – optimal low-weight and high-rigidity structure, aerodynamic components, and driver assistance technologies
  • Suspension technology – low-weight and high-rigidity components
  • Engine development – increased output from 2UR-GSE engine, reduced friction, and lower centre of gravity

This is an improved version of the LC coupe that finished 96th overall at this year’s Nürburgring 24 hour race, and will retain the same driver lineup of Takeshi Tsuchiya, Takamitsu Matsui, Naoya Gamo, and Yuichi Nakayama:

Lexus LC Driver Lineup

From the Lexus UK blog:

[Driver] Gamou has the additional responsibility of vehicle set-up. Although development of the Lexus LC endurance racer for 2019 has been in progress for a relatively short amount of time, he reports that the coupe is already improved beyond expectations. The vital dialogue between car and driver is much smoother than before, and practical elements such as the electronic rear-view mirrors provide clear, fog-free images on the dashboard monitor.

Gamou continued: “Through testing in Japan and Germany, I hope to pursue more than just better lap times. I hope we can build a car that is more comfortable and fun to drive.”

The 24 Hours of Nürburgring starts on June 20th, 2019, as part of a four-day weekend event. This will mark the thirteenth consecutive year that Lexus has participated in the race.