Beginning. The Lexus brand was created by the Toyota company in 1989. Its name was selected from 219 suggestions (the best of these included: Vectre, Verone, Chaparel, Kaliber and Alexis). The name Lexus evolved from Alexis, which was associated with one of the main characters from Dynasty, a TV series about a rich family. The Lexus was to be associated with luxury and elegance. Lexus cars were to compete with European and American cars — the Mercedes S-class, BMW series 7 and the Jaguar XJ. The LS 400 was the first model to see the light of day. The car was equipped with a V8 245 HP engine.
Development. In the process of the global growth strategy implementation, Lexus started sales in Japan and China (2005), Malaysia (2006), Indonesia (2007), Chile (2008) and the Philippines (2009).
Present. The latest Lexus LS600h and GS 450h models include a hybrid drive system first used in the Lexus RX 400h model. In addition, the first Lexus car with a diesel engine was launched — the IS 220 d. In 2007, its largest markets included the United States, Japan, Great Britain, China, Canada and Russia. In 2008, Lexus sold 430,000 cars (20,000 in Japan, 45,000 in Europe, 270,000 in North America and 95,000 in other regions).
Contribution to the automotive industry. Lexus was the first car manufacturer in the segment to offer a car with a hybrid system. This was the RH 400h model. In the following year, the hybrid drive system was introduced in the Lexus Hybrid Drive GS 450h, and in 2007 in the LS 600h model. The Lexus Hybrid Drive, as opposed to semi-hybrid cars which use a small electric engine to support the internal combustion engine, makes it possible to use the electric engine and the internal combustion engine independently or simultaneously. This means it has the energy savings of series systems, while it allows the performance of parallel systems.
Trivia. The V8 engine, which was used in the first Lexus model—the LS 400—was developed by Formula 1 engineers. It is one of the most silent engines ever manufactured. Until recently, the Lexus brand was not available in Japan. They were sold under the Toyota brand. This changed only after the third generation of the GS model was presented. The Lexus motto is: "The Relentless Pursuit of Perfection".
The most popular Lexus models include: Lexus IS, Lexus ES, Lexus GS, Lexus LS, Lexus RX, Lexus GX and Lexus LX.
Tyres. Many tyre companies are willing to cooperate with the prestigious Lexus brand. The Lexus IS250 and IS220D models were equipped with Toyo Proxes R32 tyres. Lexus RX300, in turn, used Toyo Tranpatch A11 tyres. The original equipment of Lexus cars can also include Yokohama tyres. Yokohama Advan A10F models were supplied with a large number of Lexus models: GS300, GS350, GS430, GS450h and GS460 models. Yokohama also supplied tyres for the following models: Lexus IS300 (Yokohama Y376B) Lexus L430 (Yokohama Y390R), Lexus GS460 (Yokohama Advan A10), Lexus, LX570 (Yokohama G94) and Lexus Previa (Yokohama E70B). Dunlop has also provided a wide range of tyres for Lexus cars. In the years 1999–2004, the following Lexus models were equipped with Dunlop tyres on a standard basis: ES300, GS300, GX470, IS300, LS430, LS400, LX470, SC430. Lexus was equipped with the following models of Dunlop tyres: Dunlop Sp sport 4000, Sp Sport 5000, Sp Sport 270, Grandtrek AT20 and many other models. The sizes of Lexus tyres range from 15 to 20 inches.