European debuts for the first Lexus electric car, the UX 300e, LC convertible and enhanced ES
Lexus has provided the first European reveal of its full-electric model, the UX 300e, alongside a new electric concept, updates to its business-orientated ES model and a new convertible version of its top-of-the-range LC sports car.
The UX 300e is Lexus’ first full-electric vehicle, and is based on the company’s best-selling UX model launched last year. The electric version features a 204hp motor, a 54kWh lithium-ion battery and a range of around 186 miles (WLTP) per charge. Dissapointingly, the car is said to only support up to 50kWh DC charging speeds, meaning a 0-80% charge will take around 50 minutes, although this is reasonably competitive for its segment. The car isn’t just an electric powertrain placed into the UX bodyshell, however, as it also benefits from additional enhancements designed to reduce the different noises an electric vehicle makes compared to an internal combustion-powered machine. The low-centre of gravity is also said to aid the car’s driving characteristics. Lexus’s first electric car will begin to be delivered to customers at the end of this year.
Despite previously sticking adamantly to its hybrid guns, Lexus is going electric. Complementing the UX 300e, the company showed its electric LF-30 Electrified concept car for the first time in Europe, which is designed to demonstrate a possible direction for Lexus to go in 2030.
Lexus additionally showed off enhancements to the ES model range, including new Digital side-view cameras that replace the mirrors. The cameras don’t merely supply live images to the interior screens and are instead more inventive – for example they automatically zoom out when a left or right indicator is turned on by the driver, to expand the field of view, revealing potentially otherwise-hidden cyclists, pedestrians or other developing hazards. The updated ES is available now.
The new LC convertible also made its European debut and aims to pull off the difficult job of being both a relaxing cruiser and a roughty sports car, with a valve in the exhaust that enhances the vehicle’s exhaust note on demand. The vehicle also benefits from clever aerodynamics that allow in-car conversation between passengers, even with the roof down and at speed, Lexus said. European sales commence this summer.