Lexus is reportedly preparing a new entry-level model with petrol, hybrid and electric powertrains, separate to the existing UX.

    Japan’s BestCarWeb reports the new entry-level crossover will replace the ailing CT hatchback, discontinued here in 2021 and ending production in Japan in October.

    The report says this new model will be offered in addition to the UX, which entered production late in 2018, and will debut either late in 2024 or early in 2025.

    It’ll reportedly echo the UX in offering three different types of powertrains, and it’ll reportedly have styling that’s more like that of a hatchback than a traditional SUV – again, somewhat similar to the UX.

    Late last year, Lexus released a group photo depicting next-generation electric vehicle concepts.

    At the rear of this photo, there are shadowy depictions of a range of other Lexus vehicles including the current UX, new NX, and the new RX that was subsequently revealed this year.

    Alongside these models are three mystery vehicles: a large sedan, a large, boxy SUV, and a small hatchback crossover model.

    The latter features styling blurring the lines between a traditional hatchback and a crossover, similar in concept to the defunct Infiniti Q30 and QX30 duo.

    Its lines were also more curvaceous than the wedgy UX, with rounded wheel arches and a floating roof treatment.

    Positioned in the photo next to a UX, it appears to be a similar size.

    The dated CT was discontinued locally as it didn’t comply with new, stricter government regulations around side impact protection.

    Lexus announced last July it’d go off-sale in November 2021, along with the IS sedan and RC coupe.

    In the CT’s best year, 2012, Lexus sold 1500 examples in Australia. Subsequently, sales typically hovered around 700-900 units annually before taking a dive in 2019.

    That year was the UX’s first, and it instantly broke the CT’s record with 1931 sales.

    Though it received updates during its run, the CT’s advanced age was clear. Underneath, it was related to the third-generation Toyota Prius, but it continued to be sold concurrently with the fourth-generation Prius.

    Before any new small crossover arrives, the fairly popular UX is getting a series of updates.

    Due in the second half of 2022, the UX gets updated infotainment including touchscreen functionality for the first time.

    The range was recently joined by an electric model, the UX300e.

    Lexus aims for EVs to account for 100 per cent of its sales in North America, Europe and China by 2030. For other markets, there will be a “full lineup of battery EVs in all vehicle segments by 2030”.

    Beyond this, Lexus says it is targeting 100 per cent of global sales to come from electric vehicles by 2035.

    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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