Lexus goes all-electric with UX 300e crossover
Lexus has been producing hybrid vehicles for well over a decade, but now it's made its first move into the world of full electrification, revealing plans for a battery-powered version of its UX compact luxury crossover. Currently on show at the Guangzhou International Automobile Exhibition in China, the UX 300e carries a lot of the automaker's ambitions for the era of electric vehicles, though you mightn't know it from the outside looking in.
The UX 300e appears identical to Lexus’ UX compact crossover, but the automaker has equipped its debut battery electric vehicle (BEV) with a set of purpose-built aerodynamic wheels and underbody cover. Stuffed inside is a 54.3-kWh battery splayed out beneath the cabin floor, providing the electric crossover with a low center of gravity and 400 km (248 mi) of range.
The electric motor generates 150 kW (201 hp) of power and 300 Nm (221 lb-ft) of torque, with Lexus offering a variety of acceleration and deceleration curves through what it calls a Drive Mode Select function.
There is also the addition of a shift-by-wire system on the center console, while the cabin is wrapped in extra insulation to soften outside noise that would normally be drowned out by a conventional engine and transmission.
While the UX 300e is spearheading Lexus' charge into the all-electric age, it will only be doing so in selected markets for now. The car will go on sale in China and Europe in 2020, and then in Japan early in 2021. There is no word yet on pricing.