Lexus’ sales lead as a luxury automaker is under threat from German competitors including Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz. Most of that can be blamed on the brand’s aging product lineup – however, a bunch of new or redesigned models are on their way to dealerships.
First on the list is a BMW 1-Series and Audi A3 competitor known as the Lexus CT 200h. Lexus decided to stay true its frugal and fuel-efficient minded consumer and will only offer the CT 200h as a hybrid model. No gasoline version is planned.
Another crucial update for Lexus is the next-generation GS. Since the GS is the shortest vehicle in its competitor segment, which includes the BMW 5-Series and the Mercedes-Benz E-Class, the next-generation model is expected to get a lengthened wheelbase. The next GS will also be the lead vehicle of a new shared platform when it hits dealers this spring as a 2011 model year.
A segment Lexus is studying very closely is the crossover segment. The company is planning a competitor to the BMW X6 crossover based on the next-generation Lexus GS and IS platform. Instead of focusing on power and dynamics, Lexus will focus on offering a 7-seater crossover with smooth drivability.
– By: Omar Rana
Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)