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Lexus RX 400h and 450h



  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    "Doesn't make sense on the premise of battery supply alone"

    Well it kind of makes sense from two perspectives.
    1. The RX400 battery is twice as large as the Prius. So they can build two Prius cars with the batteries of one RX400h.
    2. The Prius goes a lot further in raising Toyota's CAFE standings. I don't think Toyota is worried about making money on the hybrids at this point.

    If Lexus postpones the RX400h till 2006 as rumored, I think it will be a black eye on their credibility.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    To address the two points you brought up...

    1. It would help Toyota to get "some" RX400h out from marketing point of view than to give all the allocation to Prius.

    If it takes twice as many batteries in RX400h, if Prius production were to be upped by 25K, it would still leave room for production of 12.5K RX400h.

    Also, does this mean Camry Hybrid isn't going to happen either?

    2. Prius would help Toyota's car CAFE ratings (unnecessary since Honda and Toyota more than do well in that regard). RX400h would do the same to Toyota in light truck lineup though (where Toyota may need it more than it does in its car lineup).
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    (unnecessary since Honda and Toyota more than do well in that regard)

    Are you sure of that? Honda does fine. Toyota has 2 of the 5 worst polluters on the road. Worse than the H2. I don't think you will see a hybrid Camry for at least a couple years. I don't think Lexus wants to exchange capacity in their RX330 plant to facilitate building the RX400h. They are probably making a killing on the RX330. It will take a bit to get the China factory for the Prius up to speed. I think they are not as organized as Honda. They have not managed to hit their initial delivery dates on any of the hybrids yet. And look how vague they are on the RX400h. Sometime next year is not a precise delivery date. If Honda delivers the HAH on December 3rd as they say it will show they have their act together better than Toyota.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Thats exactly the point I made on CAFE. Toyota needs "light truck" more than a car for the purpose. Prius won't help in that regard, RX400h would.

    That said, I just learned that MT is reporting the issue to be related to CVT (noise) issue although they mention that Lexus is spinning it as a capacity issue.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    "Thats exactly the point I made on CAFE. Toyota needs "light truck" more than a car for the purpose"

    I thought they just dumped all the vehicles in one pile and your overall emissions had to be a given average. I don't know a lot about CAFE regulations.

    If there is a eCVT issue with the RX400h, WWEST may be right in his analysis of the whole HSD system. It works fine for Prius size vehicles and not much larger. They may have to re-think the hybrid business. Who knows maybe even get Honda to show them a few IMA pointers :-)
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Given the much lesser weight of the Camry over the RX the I4 hybrid would be a MUCH better solution and fewer matters of scale to content with.

    So we're more likely to see an I4 hybrid Camry long before an RX400h, if the latter even happens at all.
  • rfruthrfruth Posts: 630
    Toyota already has a in demand hybrid sedan and Honda is about ready with their Accord hybrid so its time for the 400h (& HH) - I agree a Camry would be easier to implement but that will come after a couple hybrid SUVs.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    There have been rumors of Acura RDX in the near future (a smaller SUV sitting under MDX). In concept form, it was a hybrid, powered by a 60 HP IMA system (two 30 HP brushless DC motors) to go with 190 HP ICE for a total of 250 HP.

    If RX400h is delayed by as much as MT reports, and RDX comes out as a hybrid, Honda could have (another) upper hand marketing.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    "An I4 with V6 torque/HP makes a lot more sense than a V6 with V8 torque/HP."

    Fantastic idea for the Hybrid Highlander. In fact I would be quite interested in such a relatively inexpensive(hopefully inexpensive)vehicle. It would suit the needs of many---cargo volume, passenger space, mileage/emission, awd. The I6 for the RX330h and an I4 for a Highlander makes a lot of sense. People paying premium prices for a Lexus will feel justified knowing their vehicle vrooom faster than a Highlander!
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    Pardon my cynicism, but I looked at the most recent media sources and there is nothing about a delay in the RX400h intro. The Oct. 3 New York Times just mentioned that the model will be out in Spring 2004. I still have my doubts---outside of Motor Trend I did not hear anything about a delay.

    Such a long waiting list(15,000 are on the list for a rx330h) I think several media sources would have picked up on such a significant delay and some of the 15k individual would have been notifiied by now.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Perhaps it is a misprint... and should be read April 2005 instead of April 2006. We may know for sure, soon.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    "New York Times just mentioned that the model will be out in Spring 2004."

    The above statement of mine was a misprint itself: I meant Spring 2005.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    "New York Times just mentioned that the model will be out in Spring 2004."

    NY Times does not have a history of accuracy IMO. Has the November issue of Motor Trend hit the news stands?
  • andyux2andyux2 Posts: 17
    Please refer to my message #405. I got the letter from Lexus, I spoke with my salesperson. Looks like spring 2005.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    "Has the November issue of Motor Trend hit the news stands?"

    Yes! It appears only Motor Trend knows this rumor.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    "Please refer to my message #405. I got the letter from Lexus, I spoke with my salesperson. Looks like spring 2005."

    Motor trends knows about the delay but Toyota/Lexus appears not to know about the delay. This does appear bogus to me. Although that letter from Toyota you received may be dated, you would think that the company would at least inform everyone on the waiting list.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    "Motor trends knows about the delay but Toyota/Lexus appears not to know about the delay"

    Stranger things have happened. We know they had 6 RX400h vehicles in Hawaii for Promo videos, because I followed one for several miles. Maybe all the testing has uncovered some bugs that Lexus did not want let out. Has anyone else with a deposit heard from Lexus?
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    If, as I suspect, the delayed acceleration everyone with Toyota or Lexus FWD vehicles is seemingly experiencing is intended to help alleviate loss of control resulting from FWD wheelspin then maybe V8 "hybrid" torque applied to those same wheels might be really detrimental.

    I6 is gone in favor of the 3.3L V6.
  • ptm123ptm123 Posts: 15
    I received the same letter Sept 21 referencing the my local dealership. Also Motor Trend post on their website a AP story dated October first about Toyota doubling US allocation of Prius and a statment that the RX400h and Highlander Hybrid were to be in production early 2005. It would be hard to believe MT would post story which contradicts another story they are to publish in November.
  • Lets relax and take a breath. Lexus in't delaying the 400h 18 months. And Toyota is not building an Avalon that looks like a car version of Potiac's Aztek! CR still runs that false picture of a 2006 Avalon. I've sen the interior and exterior prototypes in test at another site. Much more attractive than the mags would have you believe.

  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    I'm betting on infinity.
  • Could it be that the confusion of the 2005 vs. 2006 launch of the 400H is due to that it will be rolled out in the spring of 2005, but marketed as a 2006 year model?

    I'm number 10 in line here in Honolulu, but I still haven't received any letter from Lexus. However, it must be explained that Servco Lexus here in Hawaii does not fall under the Lexus/Toyota North America umbrella. Servco has deals directly with Japan. That is why Honolulu doesn't benefit from special Lexus financing and promotionals. I'm assuming that the letter mentioned earlier on the website is actually coming from Lexus North America.
  • ursurs Posts: 2
    Hi all
    I am new here. Since last October, I have a 04 Prius. I love it! So late January, I put down a payment for a RX400h. Last week I went back to the dealer. I am number 1 of 196 pre-orders (Santa Clara CA). He told me early March 05. Anybody else from this area?

    Urs Steiner
  • jimxojimxo Posts: 423
    He works at Lexus and said the RX400h goes on sale April 1, 2005 as a 2006. The wanted to fill the Prius orders before turning up the RX400 line. He said Lexus may increase the price the first year to scare off some of the just want to have it cause it's cool type buyer. Only 25,000 units made the first year.

  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    "He said Lexus may increase the price the first year to scare off some of the just want to have it cause it's cool type buyer."

    Scare off potential buyers with high prices! What an ingenious business plan that would be. I knew a few restaurants with such a customer philosophy. Unfortunately they are all out of business.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    He said Lexus may increase the price the first year to scare off some of the just want to have it cause it's cool type buyer.

    That seems counter productive. All you will get are the people that just gotta be first. People with money that make up the bulk of Lexus buyers are not fools. They did not get wealthy by making bad decisions. Buying anything to be the first is adolescent. This is not a car for those that are worried about the price of gas. My tax man just bought a new RX330. I asked him if he thought about waiting for the RX400h. He said no way that was foolish. Wait until the bugs are worked out in 2 or 3 years.

    Lexus is not perfect. My wife's 1990 LS 400 was in the shop a lot the first year. Mostly with suspension problems. She wished she had waited until the second year.
  • wco81wco81 Posts: 552
    I'm near Santa Clara.

    Stevens Creek Lexus has 196 preorders for the RX400H?

    Well there is a lot of interest out here for hybrids, high-tech gear and early adopter types. So not surprising.

    Probably have the money to pay the premium that dealers will no doubt charge.
  • I'm 25th on the list at Stevens Creek and have the same agreement I believe everyone else does: MSRP.
  • " Toyota's next step is to convince car buyers that hybrids deliver performance, not just efficiency. In February, the company will start selling a five-passenger hybrid SUV called the Lexus RX 400h.

    The car uses a V-6 engine plus electric motors to accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 7.5 seconds, says Michael Bruynesteyn, the Prudential analyst.

    1.2 Seconds Faster

    That's 1.2 seconds faster than the gasoline-only RX 330 from which it's derived. The RX 400h will get 34 miles per gallon of gas compared with 23 mpg for its gasoline-only counterpart, which costs $3,000 less, Bruynesteyn says.

    This performance may help Toyota achieve one of its most ambitious goals: making Lexus a fun-to-drive competitor to Bayerische Motoren Werke AG worldwide. ``We're going where BMW would like to go next and can't,'' U.S. sales COO Press says." - P01nk&refer=japan

    Note, official RX330 0-60mph is 7.7 seconds. Therefore 400H is only 0.2 sec faster. The 1.2 seconds that they were referring to is probably 30-50mph or 50-70mph acceleration where HSD delivers the most power. Fuel economy is improved by 50%. All those benefits while lowering emission to SULEV. It will be fun to compare 400H to Escape Hybrid or Accord Hybrid.

  • gottlsgottls Posts: 21
    The California International Auto Show in Anaheim will be showing the RX400h on Oct. 27, 2004. Details below

    Anaheim Convention Center
    800 West Katella Avenue
    Anaheim, CA 92802
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