While there’s plenty of focus on the bZ4x, Toyota’s first electric car (and one that still only exists in concept form), technically speaking the brand’s first electric car will actually come via its sister brand, Lexus.
The Lexus UX 300e, a fully electric version of the UX compact crossover, has snuck in under the radar somewhat. Having already been revealed and looking more or less identical to its pure combustion and hybrid cousins, it’s set to land in New Zealand in November.
The big story is pricing. Lexus plans to bring in just one variant of the UX 300e, and they’ve priced it at $79,900. And, unlike most pricing models, that includes on-road costs.
This means the model will qualify for the government’s $8,625 Clean Car Discount rebate for new EVs, meaning that the price effectively becomes $71,275 once owners claim the rebate.
The UX 300e’s electric powertrain produces a neat 150kW of power and 300Nm of torque, paired to a 54.3kWh lithium-ion battery. It’s claimed that the model can drive 400km per charge, based on the NEDC cycle. It’s also claimed that the model can sprint to 100km/h in 7.5 seconds.
“Lexus already has one of the lowest overall CO2 emission averages of its fleet in New Zealand due to the high proportion of hybrid-electric vehicles (HEVs) we sell. Year-to-date electrified sales account for 69% of our overall sales,” says Lexus Chief Executive Neeraj Lala.
“The new UX 300e is the first of many new electrified Lexus models that will ultimately contribute to the decarbonisation of our national vehicle fleet. As a company we plan to introduce 10 further electrified models by 2025 based on the concept of offering affordable mobility in the right place at the right time.”
Sales of electrified Lexus models are up some 188 per cent year-to-date relative to 2018, with 69 per cent of Lexus buyers in 2021 buying a hybrid according to Lexus New Zealand.
“The UX 300e is an expression of the Lexus brand today with its contemporary design, imaginative technology and focus on refined craftsmanship,” adds Lexus New Zealand general manager Andrew Davis.
“Lexus has always pursued both performance and sustainability, and through the Lexus electrified badge, will continue to use technology to create a sustainable future while still embracing the enjoyment and pleasure that our cars offer customers.”