The core market of Toyota’s luxury brand Lexus has been Asia; in Europe, it sold merely 70,000 cars last year. Despite the headwinds, Lexus is increasingly becoming a serious alternative for many buyers, even though – or maybe precisely because – 98 per cent of its vehicles are hybrids. Alain Uyttenhoven, head of Lexus Europe, said: “When customers come in to pick up their Lexus, we have already preset their most favorite radio channels and connected their smartphone.”
Part of Lexus’s strategy is the hybrid engine, but without plug-in technology, as “very few customers in large cities will have comfortable access to a charging point,” Uyttenhoven told motor-talk.de. Asked why the competition relied on battery vehicles, he replied: “They don’t have any other way to meet the 2020 target of 95 grams of CO2. We do.” Hydrogen is key to the carmaker’s efforts. Lexus first presented a concept study of the Lexus Future – Flagship Car / Fuel Cell, or LF-FC for short (see image), last year. However, there are rumors that the LS sedan may also be equipped with a fuel cell starting in 2019.