Comfortable, refined, silent. The Toyota Group’s first fully electric car in Europe hits the market. It is the new Lexus UX 300e, the first model to feature a single high-power generator instead of the mixed solution of the full hybrid and plug-in hybrid. It will be available in Italian dealerships in the second half of March with a dedicated open weekend. We tried it for you in preview, on an itinerary that from the Toyota Italia headquarters, to Magliana, took us to the Castelli Romani, then to the Colosseum and back: a test on a mixed motorway route (the GRA in Rome, where we tested the acceleration from 0 to 100 km / h in 7.5 seconds), extra-urban and urban, which allowed us to see the extreme versatility of the crossover, the care that the manufacturer has dedicated to the soundproofing of the already tested UX ( the insulating barrier of the battery pack under the floor, the covers under the floor and the wheel arches, the damper under the dashboard …), but above all the surprising performance of the 204 hp (150kW) and 300Nm engine, which guarantees smooth acceleration but determined. And speaking of sounds: the new UX 300e features the sophisticated Active Sound Control, developed with a composer; a system that creates a sound sensitive to acceleration through the center speaker (but can be deactivated with a button)
The battery pack is under the floor
When you step on the accelerator – whether you’re in Eco or Sport mode – the new zero-emission Lexus bites into the asphalt. On the motorway it never disappoints (the limitation to 160 km / h is not a problem), and on the hills a fun driving in total respect for the environment. Under the floor, the 54.3 kWh lithium-ion battery pack (288 cells) – guaranteed for 1 million km or 10 years – capable of powering a range of over 305 km in the WLTP cycle. The efficiency of the motor, the inverter, the gears and the high-capacity battery have all been improved to the highest level. The weight, compared to the full hybrid version (which in a year and a half reached a market share in the segment of 4.5%), increased by only 130 kilos.
Elegant, powerful and safe: here is the electric Lexus
Fast charging to 80% in 50 minutes
On the curves of the road to Castel Gandolfo, the acceleration of the 300e is truly linear, without jerking, instant torque, precise steering. On the other hand, the UX 300e features bespoke suspension and steering, with elements of Lexus integrated engine management technology presented on the new electrified LF-30 concept. The power supply is controlled by the on-board computer in order to ensure ideal behavior in every situation. The chassis has been lightened but strengthened, the car’s center of gravity is 10% lower than before. This car will appeal to Lexus customers fascinated by pure electric. Doubts about autonomy? The new e-Suv has support for fast charging that allows you to switch – to direct current – from 0 to 80% of the battery capacity in 50 minutes to 50 kW or more (while from a 6.6 kW socket it takes about 7 hours). Two refueling sockets: on the right side the door of the AC socket, for domestic charging up to 6.6 kW; on the left the DC socket for fast charging.
Investments of 13 billion dollars
There are now over 1.9 million Lexus premium hybrids in circulation worldwide and the Lexus UX 300e represents the latest, important step in Toyota’s electrification strategy – from three decades at the forefront of the sector – which will invest more than 13 billion dollars over the next 10 years, and aims to sell 4.5 million hybrids and 1 million full electric annually by 2030. In the next 3 years, another 21 electrified versions will arrive in the group; waiting for the new Lexus plug-in hybrid, which “will be a plug-in based on the efficiency of the true full hybrid”. And in a few weeks it will be the turn of Toyota’s new generation of hydrogen-powered electric cars: the Mirai. Then comes the fifth generation of full hybrids.
Four complementary solutions
The group aims, by 2025, to reduce the volume of conventional motor cars to 10% of sales; certainly more than 70% will be full hybrid. In 2020 the group brought all the solutions in the sector to the last stage of the Giro d’Italia (of which sponsor), from full hybrid, to plug-in hybrid, to electric and hydrogen. Four non-antagonistic but complementary solutions – explain in Toyota – to give each customer anywhere in the world the possibility to choose the right car at the right time and at the right price, with the conditions of accessibility that are essential for a market development . And in this regard, in this period – thanks to state incentives – the electric Lexus can be purchased with a saving of 10 thousand and 500 euros on the price lists. Which are, turnkey: 57,000 for the Premium set-up; 61 thousand for the Luxury.
Six Adas packages: total safety
Superior quality in the interior of this Lexus full electric, thanks to the craftsmanship of the Takumi masters (skilled workers with at least 25 years of experience: they are the ones who take care of the hand-sewn seats), but what matters most, in addition to the reliability of the ecological engine, it will be – for the Italian buyer – the tranquility guaranteed by the Adas systems. On this Lexus UX 300e, the second generation Lexus Safety System plus is the most complete on the market: with 6 different packages – All-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Pre-Collision System (PCS) with pedestrian detection, Lane Tracing Assist with Lane Departure Alert and Steering Assist, Road Sign Assist (RSA) and intelligent high beams (or optionally the Adaptive High Beam System) – which reduce the likelihood of accidents. Among the interesting features, there is also the remote control of the car, assistance for programmable recharging, the possibility of starting (always remotely) the car’s heating or cooling. A dedicated offer will allow buyers to install their own wall box, but at dealerships – thanks to an agreement with Edison – there will be 300 new columns. For the first year, you can top up at no cost.
February 8, 2021 (change February 8, 2021 | 14:12)
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