Lexus has tested a fully electric luxury car for Indian customers and will likely launch it soon as competitors such as Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz are getting aggressive in the EV segment here. This was told exclusively to Livemint by Lexus Indian Chairman Naveen Soni. On March 9, the Toyota-owned luxury car brand launched its new hybrid car, the NX 350h, in India. So far, Lexus has only hybrid and ICE cars in India in SUV, Sedan and Coupe form factors.
The Japanese automaker is focusing on the BEV and by 2030 it aims to have a significant proportion of electric cars in its portfolio, which also includes the Indian market.
The 2022 NX 350h has been upgraded and reintroduced to Indian buyers with more advanced features and technical superiority over its previous models.
The Lexus NX 350h has a nearly six-month waiting period, but the company hasn’t disclosed how many reservations it has received so far. “The response for the NX 350h has been amazing and exceeded our expectations,” said Naveen.
Regarding semiconductor shortages, he said the worst is already over and we could now see the level of production increase in the second half of 2022.
The Lexus NX 350h was released in three variants; Exquisite, exclusive and F-Sport. With a starting price of ₹64.90 lakh (ex-showroom), highest variant costs ₹71.60 lakh (former showroom). Although the company started bookings in January this year, buyers have to wait at least six months to get their hands on the 2022 Lexus NX 350h. The first model of Lexus NX was unveiled in 2018 in India.
The 2022 Lexus NX 350h is equipped with a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine mated to a 259-volt lithium-ion battery, which together develops an output of 236 hp.
Lexus is also focused on expanding its field presence with new stores coming to various cities across the country. Naveen also mentioned that rising crude prices could impact raw material costs and hence input costs, but did not see an immediate price hike on its car range in India.