New Lexus SUV on the way

Small Lexus SUV hybrid
Credits: Christian Schulte
23 Apr, 2013 11:05am Paul Bond

Our artist's image shows how the new baby Lexus hybrid SUV could look

Lexus is poised to launch a new hybrid-only rival to the Audi Q3, designed to sit below the RX 450h.

Kasuo Ohara, international executive vice president of Lexus, has been widely reported as saying that we could see a concept for the entry-level SUV as soon as the Tokyo Motor Show in November.

The production version, seen here in our artist’s illustration, will be based on the same platform as the Toyota RAV4, and is expected to be fitted with the 178bhp 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine and electric motor from the Lexus IS 300h.

As with the RX 450h, the petrol engine will drive the front axle and a high torque motor powers the rear wheels when traction is limited or under heavy throttle angles.

Combined output should be around 218bhp and 300Nm of torque, with CO2 emissions as low as 105g/km. No name is confirmed yet, but it will definitely feature an ‘X’ after the letter designation, as on RX. A release date of spring 2014 is expected.