Report: Lexus seeks to expand lineup, could spawn a series of new cars

Lexus LF-LC Concept

Throughout the year 2011, we saw one of the world’s most prominent luxury automobile manufacturers’ take a dive in sales, only to be beat by counterparts Audi and BMW.

And to make up for their losses, Lexus is apparently planning to expand their lineup in hopes to make up for the 21% loss in sales to the competition. This comes after Lexus’s parent company, Toyota, supposedly announced that they want to completely overhaul Lexus’s lineup.

Lexus’s course of action: nine new or updated products. As part of these steps, even a car-based seven-seat people carrier and variants to the entry-level hybrid-powered CT are in the mix with the rumors. And from the 2012 Detroit Auto Show, the Lexus LF-LC Hybrid Concept is one of these potential steps. Additionally, word is moving down the pipeline that an SC430 successor could be part of these plans as well.

Lexus’s decline in sales was a result of the unfortunate events from last year’s earthquake that crippled the nation of Japan in March.

“We will grow more than any other luxury brand this year,” said Mark Templin in an interview, Lexus’s general manager. “Our base plan is 240,000. But we think we can exceed that by a pretty good margin.”

During the same interview, Templin pointed out that they are making some big changes to get Lexus back in the game of competing for US luxury sales. But Lexus is making sure not to extend their offerings down-market into smaller segments, which is already the point of Toyota. Not to mention, Lexus doesn’t need to go below segments smaller than the CT 200h because they’re already capable of meeting the government’s CAFE standards, thanks to the Toyota brand.

– By: Chris Chin

Source: AutoNews