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Lexus RZ450e 2023: May release date in Australia for electric SUV


Bespoke electric SUV model will be released in three months’ time with about 400km range from a 64kWh battery

Lexus Australia has confirmed that its RZ electric SUV will be released in Australia in May 2023, launching initially in all-wheel drive RZ450e form.

Set to become its first dedicated electric vehicle offered by the luxury brand, the RZ will later be joined by three additional yet unknown EVs in the future. 

Lexus RZ 2023 rear driving 2
Lexus has confirmed its RZ450e will arrive in Australia in May

It will sit alongside the existing UX300e small electric SUV in Lexus showrooms, with the UX EV – based on the petrol-hybrid UX – set to receive a battery and range upgrade later this year.

The RZ450e uses the Toyota-Lexus e-TNGA platform and is related to the Toyota BZ4X and Subaru Solterra midsize SUVs, but is set to offer a higher level of luxury and refinement befitting the Lexus badge.

Lexus will be given the honour of launching first in Australia among the trio, with the Solterra and BZ4X set for an Australian release later in the year.

Range, consumption, battery size and charging

A range of about 400km is expected courtesy of a 64kWh usable battery size, though final range figures are yet to be confirmed.

Lexus RZ 2023 side
Expect around 400km of range

A maximum charging speed of 150kW will be capable when using a DC fast charger, which is down on rivals such as the Genesis GV60 which can recharge at a rate of 350kW.

Official consumption figures are not yet available but Chasing Cars saw an indicated 19kWh/100km during a short prototype drive of the car last year. 

Power, torque and 0-100km/h acceleration

While local specifications and price are yet to be confirmed, Lexus is expected to offer the RZ450e exclusively in dual-motor guise producing 230kW of power and 435Nm of torque.

A 5.6 second 0-100km/h time is expected

Motivating a weight of 2100kg, the setup is said to provide a 0-100km/h time 5.6 seconds.

Later, Lexus is expected to add an entry-level, front-wheel drive version of the RZ that could be called the RZ300e.

How much will the Lexus RZ cost in Australia?

Arriving initially in higher-specification dual-motor AWD format, the Lexus RZ450e is expected to receive a premium price.

At least two trim grades are expected to be offered, and there could be an enhancement package to add additional convenience and luxury features.

Lexus RZ 2023 prototype interior wide
it remains to be seen how much it will cost

The most direct rival to the RZ is expected to be the BMW iX3, which offers similar size but a longer electric driving range (460km).

The iX3 is priced at $104,900 in Australia and it is expected that the RZ450e will launch at around $100,000 locally.

If so, this would position the RZ above the related Toyota BZ4X that is expected to kick off from about $70,000 before on-road costs in front-wheel drive format.