Lexus Unveils LBX: A Compact Crossover Designed for the European Market



Lexus, the luxury carmaker, has introduced its smallest crossover SUV, the LBX, which will initially be available for sale in Europe. This compact vehicle, known as the 'Lexus Breakthrough Crossover,' is the first model specifically designed by the brand for the European market. It shares the Toyota TNGA-B platform with the European-spec Yaris Cross SUV.

LBX to Compete with Volvo XC40 and Audi Q3

The Lexus LBX is set to rival popular compact SUVs like the Volvo XC40 and Audi Q3. Its aim is to cater to the preferences and demands of European customers seeking a compact crossover experience. The LBX offers a 1.5-litre petrol-hybrid powertrain, combining a three-cylinder petrol engine with a single electric motor. Together, they deliver up to 136hp to the front wheels. The powertrain is paired with a new bipolar nickel-metal-hydride battery, which was first introduced in the larger Lexus RX model launched in India earlier this year.

LBX Powertrain and Battery Specifications

Lexus Europe boss Dimitris Tripospitis revealed that a significant majority of their target customers expressed interest in a parallel-hybrid powertrain. The LBX's powertrain configuration meets this demand. The combination of the 1.5-litre petrol engine and electric motor provides impressive power and acceleration. The LBX can accelerate from 0 to 100kph in just 9.2 seconds, rivaling the performance of battery-electric cars.

TNGA-B Platform from Yaris Cross

The LBX is built on the TNGA-B platform, which was modified to ensure a distinct Lexus driving experience. The wheelbase of the LBX has been extended by 20mm, while the overhangs have been reduced, and the track widened. As a result, the LBX measures 4,190mm in length, 1,825mm in width, and 1,545mm in height, with a 2,580mm-long wheelbase. Notably, the LBX is shorter and narrower than the discontinued CT hatchback, which used to be the smallest Lexus model. However, the LBX's wheelbase is only slightly longer than that of the CT.

Luxurious Interior Design

The interior of the LBX is driver-focused, with a lower seating position compared to most crossovers. The dashboard and centre console have been designed with a minimalist approach, emphasizing simplicity. Essential controls retain physical switches for intuitive operation. The LBX comes equipped with a 9.8-inch infotainment touchscreen that supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone mirroring. It also features a 12.3-inch digital instrument display as standard equipment.

Rivals and Sales Targets

Lexus expects the LBX to compete with larger models such as the Audi Q3 and Volvo XC40. The company anticipates that the LBX will contribute significantly to its sales volumes in Europe once deliveries begin in the first quarter of 2024.


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