Lexus ES Makes History in U.S.
In America, we are a country of firsts. In 1939, we were the first in the world to develop nuclear weapons. In 1969, the first human being to set foot on the moon was an American. In 2008, we elected the first African American president.
Last year, the first Lexus to ever be produced in the US was added to another list of historical firsts.
In April of 2013, Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc., announced its plans to bring production of the Lexus ES, a luxury sedan that has evolved from compact, to mid-size, to full-size status over the past 25 years, to America’s Blue Grass State.
Lexus ES Makes History in the U.S.
The milestone event was commemorated on January 8th 2014, with the company’s leadership team signing the Kentucky manufacturing plant that will soon house Lexus’ ES assembly line.
Lexus had firmly established itself as Japan’s premium automotive brand prior before it began production of the ES series of vehicles, in the late 80’s.
In North America, the car company was the mainstay of the entry-level car segment of the Lexus lineup. The ES held the title of the “United States’ Best-selling Lexus Sedan” for more than 15 years.
Much in the way of the traditional European method of identifying luxury automobiles, Lexus wanted to utilize specific letters to represent the names of each of its vehicles. It also wanted to break away and produce cars that didn’t fit the typical stereotype of a Japanese vehicle. With the arrival of the fifth generation ES, Lexus’ wanted to maintain an attractive design, while focusing on interior amenities, quietness, and a smooth ride.
Since 1989, the car maker has introduced 6 generations of the V6 powered ES; five of which have been constructed from the Toyota Camry platform.
Initially, Lexus offered a manual transmission up until 1993. It then made a straight-four engine available in China, and eventually began producing 2012’s hybrid version.
Until now, there has not been a Lexus 350 produced outside of Japan, and the car company’s decision to manufacture the vehicle in the U.S., is largely based on efforts to assemble vehicles in close proximity to its customer base.
The idea is to create about 750 new jobs in Kentucky, while investing $360 million in the plant there. The Bluegrass state is home to Lexus’ largest and most experienced assembly factory in North America, with the company is scheduled to begin production of the ES sedan in late 2015. Approximately, 500,000 units will be assembled in Georgetown, each year.
The Award-Winning Lexus ES
Over the years, the Lexus ES has been identified as the “Luxury Sedan of Sports Sedans,” winning the Canadian award for the “Best New Luxury Car” in 2007, the “Best Overall Value Award” in the Near Luxury Segment in 2004, 2005, and 2007, J.D. Power’s “Best to Hold Value Award” in 1998 and 2001, and countless other honors and accolades.
During the commemorative event, Wil James, president of Toyota’s Kentucky plant spoke about the symbolism of such a landmark moment, associating it with the Bluegrass State’s long-history of constructing world-class automobiles – another historic first for the automobile industry in the U.S.
Lexus of Highland Park offers a wide selection of new and pre-owned Lexus vehicles. If you are interested in learning more about the 2014 Lexus ES, stop into our showroom and ask anyone on our knowledgeable staff.