Lexus unveils LBX compact SUV, Australian future uncertain

Alexi Falson

Lexus has taken the wraps off its new entry-point into the range, with the LBX compact SUV entering the foray with its Yaris Cross underpinnings and a hybrid three-cylinder powertrain.

The company is yet to confirm if and/or when we can expect to see an Australian arrival, though it seems more than likely the LBX will be coming Down Under considering the popularity of the compact SUV segment.

On the styling front, the LBX is a somewhat drastic departure from business as usual over at Lexus, showcasing a sleek new styling package, aggressive headlight design and bulging rear haunches.

Underneath, the LBX is based on Toyota’s existing TNGA-B compact vehicle platform snatched from the Yaris Cross, though the company says it has been “modified and retuned” for the LBX. It measures in at 4190mm long, 1825mm wide, stands 1825mm tall and has a wheelbase spanning 2580mm.

Power comes supplied exclusively by a 1.5-litre three-cylinder hybrid producing 100kW, which powers the wheels via a CVT automatic, with both a front-wheel drive entry-point and range-topper AWD variant confirmed.

The front end picks up MacPherson struts while there’s a torsion beam at the rear for front-wheel drive variants, with AWD variants picking up a set of double wishbones.

Lexus has kept it clean and simple for the LBX’s cabin, with minimal spread of physical buttons, though there is added storage underneath the centre console, and a large 9.8-inch infotainment display.

There’s also a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster sitting in front of the driver, as well as ambient lighting and a heap of safety features fitted as standard.

Final specs are yet to be confirmed, with Lexus adding that a decision to introduce the LBX here in Australia to “be made at a later stage”.

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