It seems Lexus is a busy forward-looking company of late…
Only last month I wrote about the fine-looking ROV and the NX PHEV concepts, both resplendent in their matching bronze and black colours. While those vehicles might best be described as catering for a more niche market, the recent reveal of a Lexus battery EV sports car might pique the interest of those that the ROV and NX PHEV passed by.
The Lexus electric supercar concept is certainly another fine-looking automobile and adds weight to the claim, according to CEO Akio Toyoda, that Lexus long-term forward-thinking plan is to centre the brand on battery-powered electric vehicles (BEVs).
The much-respected Lexus LFA was a 2-seater sports car revealed in the autumn of 2009 at the Tokyo Motor Show. This followed a couple of intriguing concept vehicles appearing as part of the LF Line series of concepts which first appeared in 2003. It’s now been exactly six years since Lexus announced that the company had no immediate plans for a replacement for the LFA anytime soon. It may be that Lexus was already thinking ahead to the electric sports car, as the company say that this EV concept is about reviving the spirit of the Lexus LFA.
Lexus’ grand plan is to launch a full BEV line-up by 2030, under the branding of Lexus Electrified. While we don’t have many details yet, Lexus has teased a bold claim for this electric supercar claiming a 0-62mph of just over 2 seconds. It looks like such power will not compromise range either, with a further bold claim of a cruising distance of around 430 miles, thanks – the manufacturer intriguingly says – to the potential use of solid-state batteries. It was only late last year that Forbes described the solid-state car battery as the ‘knight in shining armour’ for the electric vehicle going forward – solid-state batteries are lithium-metal batteries that utilise solid electrodes and electrolytes.
But let’s not get too excited about thoughts of long-distance cruising without worrying about how much charge you have left just yet; it’s estimated that as such batteries are still rather experimental and in the midst of an evolution, we aren’t likely to see anything worthwhile till around 2030 (at least) – just when Lexus aims to have a fleet of EV sports cars on the road, of course. So sitting where are today, still 8 years away from 2030, all this is speculative at best of course – but interesting nonetheless.
Lexus also says that with the eventual launch of a fleet of electric vehicles, it will be catering for more diverse driving experience options, as perhaps evidenced by the aforementioned bronzed duo. Toyoda has said that the process towards a fleet of BEVs will allow Lexus to become more attuned to what the customer wants, offering a choice of vehicles tuned to differing lifestyles and recreational pursuits aimed at specific different regions across the globe.
It’s clear that Lexus is entering into an exciting and ambitious period of development for the not too distant future, and we can but hope that what we have seen so far all make it to full production.
Let us know your thoughts, in the comments below.
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