Pure-electric Lexus UX 300e SUV confirmed for New Zealand
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Falling under the Toyota umbrella, Lexus has had mild hybrids in its fleet for some time now, but is yet to offer an all-electric alternative in New Zealand.
This is set to change before the end of the year, as Lexus New Zealand has announced plans to bring in the all-electric UX 300e SUV.
Lexus New Zealand General Manager Andrew Davis says it’s exciting to reveal the marque’s first battery electric vehicle (BEV).
“Lexus has chosen the UX platform as the first of its range to carry the much-awaited pure electric technology. As the smallest Lexus SUV, this makes the UX300e an accessible luxury battery-electric SUV.”
“The UX 300e is the first of many new electrified Lexus models which will ultimately contribute to the decarbonisation of our national vehicle fleet - a key objective of the NZ government,” Mr Davis says.
Power comes from an electric motor that makes 150kW and 300Nm, the UX 300e can make the 0-100km/h sprint in 7.5 seconds. Like most small electric SUVs, power is sent exclusively to the front wheels.
Featuring a 54.3kWh battery, the 300e is able to travel up to 400km on electric power alone, and is capable of both AC and DC fast charging.
Before shipping, every UX 300e will be checked for perfection in a ‘Quiet Room’ facility by Takumi craftspeople. Here they use their finely trained ears and fingertips to detect and rectify unwanted noise and vibrations within the cabin.
The Lexus journey from, first adding an electric motor and battery to a petrol engine to create the ‘hybrid’ powertrain, and then to battery electric and plug-in hybrid options, mirrors the transitional pathway the company says is the most feasible method to get New Zealand to a zero-carbon future.
“We don’t see an immediate jump to BEV for all drivers. We expect that as Lexus drivers upgrade over time, they will continue to purchase vehicles that meet their needs. Our role is to be able to provide these vehicles in the most fuel-efficient and low carbon-emitting way,” Andrew says.
Local pricing a specification will likely be revealed closer to the end of the year, when the car is set to be launched.