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Lexus adds entry-level hybrid model to UX range

2020-05-16 07:00
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Lexus UX250h EX. Image: Motorpress

Lexus will continue to muscle a hybrid-powered model into every segment it fights in. The Japanese luxury carmaker unveiled details of its latest UX hybrid model to local media via a virtual launch on Friday (May 15). 

Priced at R690 300 the UX 250h EX is one of four derivatives: petrol-powered 200 EX, followed by the new 250h EX, the UX 250h SE and topped off by the UX 200 F Sport.

The company sold 147 hybrid models in 2019 and aims to increase its market share with the new 250h EX model. Lexus says the UX competes against compact premium SUVs such as the BMW X1, Mercedes-Benz GLA and the Volvo XC40. 

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Image: Motorpress

"Expanding the UX 250h line-up was a natural extension for the Lexus newbie, which has been a sales driver in the local market for the brand. Lexus has furthermore enjoyed a good market share for hybrid sales over the last year. In 2019 Lexus commanded a 39% market share of all hybrid and electric sales in the premium sector," says Glenn Crompton, Lexus sales and marketing vice president. 

Mechanically, the 250h EX is identical to the SE derivative which means a total output system output of 135kW provided by a normally-aspirated 2.0-litre petrol engine in conjunction with bespoke hybrid drive system engineered for the UX's platform. 

Lexus says a fully-electric UX is planned for 2021 but has been not confirmed for local introduction at this point. 

Notable standard features include park distance control with a reverse camera (without panoramic view), two rear USB charging ports, a navigation system and a hands-free rear boot opening. 

Infotainment wise expect an eight-speaker sound system and functionality for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Lexus says it includes free Wi-Fi connectivity for the driver and passengers under the ‘Lexus Connect’ banner.

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Image: Motorpress

Pricing

200 EX - R654 700 

250h EX - R690 300

250h SE - R756 200 

F Sport  - R785 400

Compiled by Sean Parker

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