LEXUS Australia says its first yr with five-figure gross sales remains to be inside attain regardless of the new-vehicle market’s decline and tight provide of its in-demand hybrid fashions.
Chatting with GoAuto this week on the RX nationwide media launch within the Blue Mountains, Lexus Australia spokesperson Dan DeGasperi stated the corporate is three months away from confirming its highest annual gross sales results of 10,000-plus items.
The newest VFACTS figures present that the Japanese status model has elevated its gross sales by 6.6 per cent to the tip of September, presently standing at 7107 items in a market that has cooled off by 7.9 per cent.
“Lexus is having its finest yr ever and by the point fireworks welcome within the New 12 months, we’ll have achieved a brand new full-year gross sales file,” he stated.
“Not like our German rivals, Lexus has elevated gross sales and market share this yr.”
Mr DeGasperi stated Lexus Australia is sticking to its 2019 goal of 10,000 gross sales, which was introduced in January, though he cautioned there are “a few variables at play”.
“Two issues working (towards us) is the broader financial system and you will notice within the wider market a downturn there, which hasn’t affected Lexus,” he stated.
“The larger one, actually, for us is hybrid provide normally, however notably for UX and NX. It’ll come down as to whether some orders may be crammed in December, on the again finish of the yr, or if they are going to go to January.
“So, it will likely be a file yr, however the place it falls, we don’t know in the mean time.”
The hybrid UX250h is accounting for about 60 per cent of the UX small SUV’s general quantity in its first yr on sale, making for a three-month ready record, whereas the affect of a worldwide scarcity of batteries is being most felt by the best-selling NX mid-size SUV, which has backtracked by 14.7 per cent, to 2516 items.
Both method, Lexus Australia is coming off the again of a file September that noticed it promote 734 autos, which is 129 items – or 21.three per cent – greater than it did within the corresponding month final yr.
The UX was roughly singlehandedly chargeable for this development with 122 examples offered final month.
Having formally launched in January, the UX has acted as a gateway mannequin, in response to Mr DeGasperi, not solely introducing new consumers however offering essential incremental gross sales for Lexus Australia in one of many years it has wanted them most.
In whole, 1395 examples of the UX have discovered houses to the tip of September, and with out these registrations, Lexus Australia’s year-to-date quantity can be down a major 14.three per cent.
That stated, the UX is just not the one mannequin offering a lift for Lexus Australia this yr because the ES300h mid-size sedan has discovered favour with consumers, recording 421 gross sales for a whopping 184.5 per cent enchancment over the corresponding interval in 2018.
The ES300h’s success stands to proceed following a model-year replace earlier this month that ushered in a brand new performance-focused F Sport grade in addition to range-wide Apple CarPlay and Android Auto assist.
The third and ultimate mannequin offering Lexus Australia with development this yr is the LX upper-large SUV, which is up 21.three per cent to 336 gross sales.
Whereas Toyota Australia has moved to delete petrol variations of the mechanically associated LandCruiser 200 Collection from its mannequin line-up as a result of low gross sales, Mr DeGasperi stated Lexus Australia has no plans to make the identical transfer.
“We’re retaining diesel and petrol for LX as a result of the gross sales point out there may be completely a marketplace for each,” he stated.
Mr DeGasperi added the gross sales of the diesel LX450d have “surpassed expectations”, accounting for about 45 per cent of the LX’s general quantity since its launch.
Obtainable in facelifted fourth-generation type as of this month, the RX massive SUV nonetheless performs a key position for Lexus Australia as its third-best-selling mannequin, having discovered 1383 houses (-7.9%) within the yr to this point.
Whereas Mr DeGasperi wouldn’t be drawn on gross sales projections for Lexus Australia’s freshest product, he did reveal that “the plan is to develop the amount inside the context of the section” it performs in, which has contracted by eight.2 per cent to the tip of September.
The LC sportscar is perhaps Lexus Australia’s lowest quantity contributor after taking a 71.zero per cent hit within the yr to this point, to simply 20 examples, but it surely may quickly obtain a carry from a second physique fashion, the convertible that was revealed in July and remains to be but to be confirmed on the market domestically.
Mr DeGasperi stated the drop-top’s possibilities are usually not depending on the fixed-roof model’s gross sales, which might in any other case put a severe dent in its enterprise case.
“In case you take a look at the sportscar market, that isn’t a quantity automobile for Lexus,” he stated. “It does an unlimited job of carrying the model into new territory.”
The CT200h small hatch (145 items, -68.5%), IS mid-size sedan (643, -25.2%) and GS massive sedan (28, -57.6%) are Lexus Australia’s three oldest fashions, with their declining gross sales in 2019 reflecting this, though the a lot newer LS upper-large sedan (25, -62.7%) has additionally stumbled.
Nonetheless, Mr DeGasperi stated: “This yr’s file gross sales are the fruits of a long-term focus by Lexus on placing prospects first.”