Tokyo: Lexus is no stranger to electrification, with almost its entire line-up being hybrid powered, but when it comes to fully-electric vehicles the Japanese premium carmaker has lagged a little.
But that’s set to change with the release of the all-new Lexus RZ, which joins the new Toyota bZ4X on the company’s new dedicated EV architecture called e-TNGA.
Lexus says the newcomer heralds its transition into a BEV-centred brand.
There’s also a fair chance that the Lexus RZ will come to South Africa as the local division says the new model is currently “under study”.
The all-wheel drive electric SUV is powered by two electric motors: one on the front axle that produces 150kW and another at the rear, which adds 80kW to the tally.
Its 71.4kWh battery is said to offer a range of up to 450km, according to factory claims, and Lexus believes that its battery-control technology will allow it to retain at least 90 percent of its capacity after 10 years of use.
The vehicle measures 4.8 metres in length and 1.89 metres in width, making it slightly larger than the Lexus NX but a bit smaller than the RX.
A whole range of advanced safety technologies are on offer, including the latest Lexus Safety System + with Proactive Driving Assist.
This includes an optional driver monitor that provides a warning if it detects the driver is drowsy or looking sideways. If the system determines that the driver's posture is severely compromised and that it is difficult for the driver to continue driving, it warns other drivers by flashing the hazard lamps while gently decelerating the vehicle. The system then stops the vehicle in its lane, unlocks the doors and automatically notifies emergency services through the vehicle's connected technology.
Advanced Traffic Jam Support and Advanced Park with remote function are also available in the new Lexus RZ.