“The Relentless Pursuit of Perfection.” If those words sound familiar, it is because they are the slogan for Lexus, the premium car company that was introduced by Toyota in 1989. How apt those words are!
Lexus was originally designed under the code name F1 Project, a highly secretive adventure for Toyota as they sought to sneak into the premium car market and take on the big boys at Mercedes-Benz and BMW. The project began with a challenge from the Toyota chairman at a secret meeting of executives. He wanted to create a luxury vehicle that would challenge the world’s best. Little did he know that Nissan had similar plans with their Infiniti, and Honda had similar plans with their Acura.
During the planning and development stage, test drives were conducted on the German Autobahn and over U.S. roads, and market research determined that separate sales channels were needed in the United States, so plans went ahead for developing a network of Lexus dealerships in America.
It all happened in 1989 with the introduction of the Lexus LS400. It was originally sold in 81 Lexus dealerships in the United States and was backed by a multimillion dollar advertising campaign. It debuted at $38,000, considerably less than the Mercedes-Benz 420 SEL and the BMW 735i, and it was praised as the equal of both of those automotive legends. The Lexus received high marks for its quiet ride, quality of craftsmanship, aerodynamics, and fuel economy.
Toyota rocked the automotive world in 1989, and BMW and Mercedes were both shocked by the results, as their market share in the luxury class dropped from 29% to 19% that first year in the United States.
Since then Lexus has gained a very loyal customer base, and their future looks very bright indeed. The car line has been steadily expanded, and they are considered the equal to Mercedes-Benz and BMW; in fact, they are rated much higher than those two in customer loyalty and company image.
What we have learned over the years is that the folks at Toyota are determined to make the best cars and best replacement parts possible, and year after year their dependability speaks to this determination. Both Toyota and Lexus models are built to last, and even though perfection is unattainable, there is no doubt that they believe in their slogan of pursuing perfection at all costs.
Whether you are looking for a used transmission, engine, fuel pump or radiator, you can trust Lexus to deliver. Replacement parts are expensive, so make sure you take a look at the salvage yard option when it is time to buy parts for your Lexus or Toyota.