After bringing a two-year production of the $375,000 LFA in 2012, Lexus is all set to build a similar car for the next generation. The 552HP car had a limited production of just 500 units and had a huge impact on the brand’s reputation in the luxury car market. The firm’s Executive Vice President indicated that the long-term plan of building a special car for the current generation had President Toyoda’s support. However, he demurred from going into specifics.
Considering that LFA was in the pipeline for a period of ten years before it was manufactured, luxury car buyers may have to wait for a long time, which may be as long as 30 years if the company spokesman is to be believed. The LFA propelled Lexus into the rarified world of luxury car makers and was compared with Volkswagen’s Porsche, Fiat’s Ferrari, and Daimler’s Mercedes Benz. It has also influenced the company’s other premium models introduced in the market.
The US luxury car market, long dominated by BMW and Daimler, saw the entry of a third competitor, Lexus, which responded to President Toyoda’s persistent efforts to combine styling and performance with quality to impress luxury car enthusiasts. The redesigned IS sedan and GX SUV models offered by Lexus has helped it steal market share from the other two brands.
The LFA was originally conceived as a $120,000 coupe. However, the car’s price tag kept on rising as improved technology and newer features were continuously included into the car. President Toyoda’s enthusiasm for a LFA-like car for the next generation may stem from the stunning public reaction for the LF-LC coupe concept car unveiled at the 2012 Detroit auto show.
The President has subsequently named a designer to lead the brand and introduced NX, the first Lexus car to have a turbocharged engine. The RC and RC F sport coupes are set to be launched in the US in November 2014.
Demand for Lexus cars in the USA has been rising with half of the company’s worldwide sales in 2013 coming from this country. Lexus is targeting to break its record 523,000 deliveries in 2013 by delivering 550,000 units in 2014. Sales in the US are set to exceed 300,000 units as compared to the 274,000 units old in 2013. Orders for IS and GX SUV have seen a close to 100% and more than 100% increase respectively.
On the whole, Lexus’ investment in the luxury car segment seems to be paying off and car enthusiasts in the USA have a whole new range of cars to consider, compare, and experience.