Lexus Introduces 2006 RX 400h

Lexus Announces On Sale Date for 2006 RX 400h

11/08/2004 Torrance, CA

November 8, 2004 - Torrance, CA - Lexus announced to its dealers on Friday that the RX 400h luxury hybrid SUV will go on sale April 15, 2005. Lexus has more than 9,500 confirmed pre-sold orders for the 2006 RX 400h with more than 46,000 consumers registering online for more information about the world's first luxury hybrid vehicle through the company's website, www.Lexus.com

The RX 400h is the first vehicle to provide a powerful new performance dimension to the traditional hybrid advantages of high mileage and low emissions.

"We've received significantly more pre-launch consumer interest for the 400h than any vehicle in our entire 15-year history," said Lexus Group Vice President and General Manager, Denny Clements. "Although the on sale date is confirmed, we are attempting to move the start of production up even earlier in 2005 to build up sufficient inventories to help meet the demand we expect in mid-April," he added.

In addition, Lexus Financial Services announced it will extend lease agreements to current Lexus owners who have placed orders for a RX 400h by as much as 12 months, if necessary, to accommodate those customers who have voiced concern that their Lexus lease might run-out before their RX 400h arrives.



 

09/07/2004

Additional information on the RX 400h will be available on February 1, 2005.

Lexus debuted what will be the world's first luxury gas-electric hybrid vehicle at the 2004 North American International Auto Show. The 2006 RX 400h will be powered by a V6 Hybrid Synergy Drive system that combines sub-eight second zero-to-sixty acceleration with fuel-efficiency equivalent or better than the current average for a four-cylinder compact sedan. The RX 400h also will be rated Super Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (SULEV), one of the most stringent emissions ratings in the industry.

"The new RX 400h redefines the midsize luxury SUV market while raising awareness and acceptance of hybrid gas-electric vehicles among luxury car and SUV buyers," said Denny Clements, Lexus group vice president and general manager. "This is truly a breakthrough in terms of hybrid gas-electric powertrains because, for the first time, it adds a new performance dimension to the traditional hybrid advantages of high mileage and low emissions."

Lexus created the car-based, luxury SUV segment with the launch of the innovative RX 300 more than five years ago. For 2004, Lexus made significant enhancements to the luxury content, performance and safety features with the introduction of the RX 330, making this vehicle the perfect match for the new V6 hybrid system.

The new RX 400h, available in early 2005, will become the premium model in the RX series, offering increased performance, smoother operation, fuel efficiency and a host of high technology, safety and comfort features.

New Vehicle Stability Control

The RX 400h will introduce the next generation in Lexus vehicle stability control systems. Monitoring a variety of sensors, the system is designed to anticipate the onset of a vehicle skid or slide and then helps correct the situation with a combination of braking and throttle control. The new system is less obtrusive than conventional VSC but ultimately more effective.

More Powerful, Advanced Drivetrain

The 400h all-wheel drive hybrid powertrain combines two powerful electric motors with the highly efficient 3.3-liter V6 engine found in the RX 330 to significantly improve low to mid-speed acceleration and overall fuel efficiency. The system is a "full hybrid," meaning that the RX 400h is capable of operating in separate gas or electric modes, as well as a mode that combines power from both.

The RX 400h will develop a peak system output of approximately 270 horsepower and deliver combined fuel economy equivalent or better than the current EPA average of a compact sedan. Zero-to-sixty acceleration also will improve over the current RX 330's sub-eight second time.

The RX 400h uses a regenerative braking system to further boost system efficiency. When the vehicle is coasting or the brakes are applied, the electric motor functions as a generator, capturing kinetic energy that would normally be lost as heat through the brakes and converting it into useable electricity to recharge the batteries.

One of the most remarkable features of the RX 400h is how similar this SUV is to its cousin, the RX 330. The computer-controlled powertrain seamlessly blends power from the V6 gasoline engine, the electric drive motor and the generator. The driver does not feel the vehicle changing operational modes. In fact, the only give away is the absence of the traditional tachometer. In its place, the RX 400h has an illuminated power meter that displays the level of power generated by the gas-electric hybrid powertrain. The driver also will be able to monitor the gas-electric power distribution on the available navigation system's seven-inch touch panel display screen.

Luxury and Convenience Features

Lexus craftsmanship and attention to even the smallest details continue with the RX 400h. Nearly every feature available in the RX 330 is found in the RX 400h, with the exception of the exclusive use of brushed aluminum accents inside the RX 400h that convey a high-tech look and feel to match its capabilities. The three-spoke steering wheel features easy-to-use controls for the audio system as well as the hybrid system's on-board computer monitor located in the center instrument panel.

"We believe the RX 400h will exceed the expectations of luxury vehicle buyers and establish a premium market for performance-oriented, fuel-efficient gas-electric hybrids," said Clements.

Preliminary Specifications
Powertrain: Engine - 3.3 liter V6
Electric motors - Permanent magnet
Estimated total horsepower - 270
Expected EPA emissions rating - Super Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (SULEV)
Transmission - Electronically-controlled Continuously Variable Transmission (ECVT)
Wheelbase: 106.9 in.
Length: 187.2 in.
Width: 72.6 in.
Height: 66.4 in.

Lexus Division
Primary Media Contacts

Bill Ussery
Lexus Public Relations Manager
bill_ussery (at) toyota.com
310-468-3282

Charlotte Lassos
Lexus Public Relations Administrator
charlotte_lasso (at) toyota.com
310-468-3279

Brad Nelson
Public Relations Consultant
brad_nelson (at) toyota.com
310-468-5224