In 1999 the Lexus became the top selling luxury import vehicle in America. Three years later, the Lexus IS300
won America's prestigious Grand Am Cup race series. In 2003, Lexus introduced the RX400h Hybrid which uses petrol and electrical
power. The new Lexus LS600h is the first hybrid car featuring a V8 engine.
"Lexus's flagship LX 470 SUV is basically a retrimmed Land Cruiser from parent-company Toyota. The only engine is a V8 with 275 hp, a gain of 40 hp from 2005. A 5-speed automatic is the sole transmission. All-wheel drive with low-range gearing is standard, as is ABS and traction/antiskid control."
The Lexus LS 460 was declared the 2007 World Car of the Year at the New York International Auto Show. Rather than being just a popularity contest, the objective was to ensure that the World Car of the Year would be the product of a fair and thorough assessment process that considered the needs and wants of consumers the world over. The process began with individual jurors evaluating and rating the candidates using a variety of
standardized parameters – everything from styling and quality, to performance and safety. The inaugural World Car of the Year in 2005 was the Audi A6. In 2006, the BMW 3 Series won the World Car of the Year title.