Lexus is a brand somewhat unknown to the general public but it is no less important for that. Toyota’s premium firm has reached commercial maturity in 2019 with three decades behind it. To celebrate its 30th anniversary, Lexus invited us to closely relive that passage of time in a test day with its most emblematic models. Present were the Lexus LS 400, Lexus IS 200, Lexus SC 430, Lexus RX 400h, Lexus GS 450h, Lexus LS 460L, Lexus LS 600h and the Lexus LC 500 . Many of them will not be considered classics but, if one thing is clear, it is that they were not made haphazardly, but that they all represent an evolution.
The automotive sector is intrinsically linked to the culture and social movements of the time. Hence, some topics are easily transferable to the product arising from a brand based on its nationality. Lexus was born in 1989 but the Japanese do not jump into the pool without water: the project started much earlier. Eiji Toyoda, president of Toyota in 1983, challenged his company to create “a vehicle that was better than the best in the world.”
At that very moment, Japanese minds began their work: conscientious, patient and applied. Those six years had served to create a model in which more than 1,400 engineers and 2,300 technicians were involved . The confidential Circle F project was funded and supported enough so that Ishiro Suzuki, in charge of its development, could move away from what was established.
Its objective was the international market and therefore it had to relearn what luxury, comfort, sophistication and dynamism meant for the rest of the globe. A total of 450 test vehicles, 4.4 million kilometers on the Shibetsu test track and hundreds of prototype engines after the Lexus LS appeared. Its creation shocked the whole world: the Lexus LS400 was not a simple proposal or roadmap, it was real and it was very good.
30 years have passed, Lexus has gone hybrid , has abandoned traditional combustion, has changed the paradigm of customer service and has established itself in Europe as a premium brand. Let’s find out what makes this firm so interesting.