What is it?
Compared to the monumental gamble Lexus took back in 2004 when it launched its revolutionary RX 400h – the first car in both the luxury and SUV sectors to feature a hybrid powertrain – you could almost accuse the brand of playing it safe with the all-new UX 300e.
That’s because it’s simply the latest of a handful of similar-sized models designed to capitalise on the rising popularity of both SUVs and electrification. In the past couple of years alone, we’ve seen the launch of various electric crossovers such as the brilliant Kia e-Niro, Hyundai Kona Electric, Peugeot e-2008 and DS 3 Crossback E-Tense.
However, with a list price starting at £43,900 and rising to £53,500 if you specify the range-topping (£9600) Takumi pack, you could argue that Lexus’s first all-electric vehicle is a more natural rival to the Tesla Model 3 and Polestar 2. It’s certainly how Lexus would like us to view “the only all-electric crossover SUV in the premium segment”.
Either way you look at it, though, the UX 300e will have its work cut out. All of those aforementioned rivals, bar the 3 Crossback E-Tense, have a longer range than the UX 300e’s claimed 196 miles, and although a 0-62mph of 7.5sec and a top speed of 100mph are perfectly respectable, they won’t be grabbing any headlines.