A luxurious first BEV offering but does it have the “muscle” to compete? Wayne Gerdes – CleanMPG – November 22, 2019 2021 Lexus UX 300e Lexus continues to follow their long-term plan as laid out before us at the auto shows and various press events. At the 2019 Tokyo Motor Show, Lexus unveiled its global electrification strategy, called "Lexus Electrified", while promoting their future of exceptional performance, handling, and control. At the Toyota’s Electrified Past, Present and Future event we attended in Greensboro just over a month ago, the discussion lead me to the following: It must be that time as Toyota is now readying to move into the full electric landscape with its first battery electric vehicle (BEV). At the Guangzhou International Automobile Exhibition earlier today, the world was provided a first look at the 2021 Lexus UX 300e BEV. Lexus’ Electrified design process includes integrated control of powertrain, steering, suspension, and brakes with motor control technology coming directly from the brands class leading Hybrid vehicles. As the first all-electric production model under the Lexus Electrified banner, the all-new, all-electric UX 300e was designed to provide that exceptional performance wrapped in a distinctive exterior. The UX 300e's high-output motor will provide beyond gas and gas-hybrid engine acceleration while the high-capacity batteries and tray layout directly below the floor provides a low center of gravity and an approximately 175-mile driving range. That range result comes from Toyota’s release claiming a 400 km range on the NEDC which is vastly less severe than the real world or even our EPA. The UX 300e is scheduled to go on sale in the Chinese and European markets in 2020, and in Japan early in 2021. 2021 Lexus UX 300e Battery layout 2021 Lexus UX 300e Features The first EV from Lexus will provide owners the brand's comfortable and what Lexus calls “one of the quietest cabins in the CUV marketplace.” The UX 300e includes additional engineered insulation that suppresses outside wind or wheel well debris which would be otherwise noticeable in the absence of an engine and transmission. Active Sound Control (ASC) transmits natural ambient sounds to allow for understanding of driving conditions. I am not a fan of the active sound processing systems as movement within the cabin can creates a warble like auditory experience that is very unnatural imho. The UX 300e's Drive Mode Select lets owners dial in smooth acceleration and deceleration according to their desire. FO more spirited acceleration, a Performance mode with paddle shift should suit those drivers demands all the while offering great on-road feel. With the low center of gravity, optimized front/rear weight distribution, additional structure bracing, and shock absorbers' tuning, expect a near Tesla like road holding capability. The Toyota/Lexus engineering team focused on battery reliability given the ongoing discussion of early onset of reduced capacity. If they have somehow overcome the use and age battery degradation, it will be the dawn of a new era. The batteries are equipped with a temperature management system that operates at low and high ambient temperatures. Reliability is also increased with the use of multiple monitoring systems that regulate charging and prevent conditions like overcharging. The efficiency of the motor, inverter, GEARS – I am not sure what that is all about??? – and high-capacity battery were all maximized with the knowledge acquired from the hybrid vehicles. By improving the performance of the entire system, the UX 300e's ~ 175-mile driving range. As I have explicitly stated across numerous BEV announcements, targeting a range below current competitors’ offerings is a big mistake and Toyota/Lexus apparently have done just that. Remember it was way back in 2016 when the Model X 90D was introduced with 238 miles of AER which is close to what the 2021 Lexus UX will arrive with. For the 2020 MY, the Tesla X Long Range offers owners a 328-mile AER and surely will beat the snot out of the UX to 60 without the driver doing anything more than pushing the pedal just a partial way to the floor. Lexus’ UX 300e links the owner’s smartphone via a dedicated app from which you can deduce battery state of charge (SoC) and driving range. Charging controls are also included such as timer function to inform the owner when the vehicle will be fully charged or to schedule the charging according to when the vehicle is expected to be driven next. The app also allows the owner to remotely control various convenience functions such as the A/C, seat heaters, and window defrosters. We have experienced these exact same features from within the 2011 Nissan LEAF. Does anyone remember my pic of the following from the 2011 LA Auto Show Press days? Damn that was a small screen way back when! 2011 Nissan LEAF Smartphone App Driving range, SoC, charging start and finish time almost a decade ago and well before the UXs app providing the same. Lexus UX 300e Motor Specs Max output: 201 hp and 221 lb-ft. of torque. Lexus UX 300e Battery Specs 54.3 kWh Li-Ion with a max Level2 charging cap of 6.6 kW and Level3 DC of 50 kW In addition to the bold and sophisticated exterior reminiscent of tough and agile driving, Lexus developed special aerodynamic wheels and underbody cover for the UX 300e. Lexus prioritizes the development of the most advanced safety technologies and quickly delivering them to drivers. UX 300e adopts Lexus Safety System+, as Lexus continues to pursue the prevention of accidents and fatalities, as well as decreasing driver stress and developing driver assist systems to provide a more natural and safe driving experience. Lexus UX 300e Lexus UX 300e Early Conclusions A 54 kWh pack powering a 201 hp and 221 lb-ft. of torque motor in a compact CUV sounds like a recipe for an also ran. The Lexus brand is the epitome of Toyota technology but at a Lexus price point. This one appears to be swinging way behind the curve and it may not be accepted well once it arrives. I can only hope some of these specs are vastly uprated prior to any introduction into North American market as this is not the platform to propel the brand forward here. In the meantime, while we await a U.S. spec BEV from either Toyota or Lexus, thank goodness for the upcoming 2021 RAV4 PHEV-39, 7-passenger 2020 Lexus RX 450hL, and 7-passenger 2020 Highlander Hybrid.