The Japanese brand seems to be focusing on making more affordable luxury cars.
Lexus is predominantly known as the purveyor of large, dependable luxury vehicles. But of late, the Japanese automaker has shown an interest in exploring other avenues of income. We've heard rumors of a Lexus-badged Toyota 86 and seen evidence of such a prototype, and traditional gas guzzlers like the Lexus GS may return as environmentally friendly reincarnations. But along with potentially rebadging an affordable sports car and making a massive sedan hydrogen-powered, a new rumor suggests that the carmaker wants to give the Lexus UX a baby brother, of sorts. According to reports, this vehicle would be something even smaller and more economical.
Japanese publication Mag-X reports that this new model would be built on the GA-B platform that currently underpins the Toyota Yaris Cross and would not come to the States. Instead, it would likely be sold in Europe, Japan, and Australia - the same markets where the Yaris Cross is sold. The powertrain is also likely to be identical, with a 1.5-liter three-pot hybrid system delivering a modest 100 horsepower. As for the unnamed speculative crossover's competition, it would likely do battle with BMW's X1 and Audi's Q2, neither of which are cars that have a huge amount of power, though both offer more performance than just 100 ponies.
It's quite possible that Lexus would offer better engines, but that may inflate the price too much for the sub-UX crossover to be competitive. Nevertheless, we're sure Lexus will highlight a number of unique selling points, should this new vehicle rumor be based in reality. As a reminder, the BMW X1 in America produces 228 hp from its 2.0-liter four-banger, while the Audi Q2 (not sold here) comes with a 1.4-liter four-pot producing 147 hp. However, if Lexus wanted to, there is surely room for more power to be eked out of the Yaris engine. It could come from revised tuning or a more powerful electric presence.