Lexus cannot build enough 2014 IS 250 F Sport and IS 350 S Sport models
Lexus announced its sales results for September and the standout in the mix is the new 2014 IS line. Lexus just kept pace with the approximately 4% sales growth the industry saw in September when accounting for the number of sales days. However, some of the Lexus line has simply gone off the charts in terms of growth. The Lexus IS line grew 42% over last year, following an even bigger August.
In its press comments today following the release of sales data Lexus admitted that it cannot keep up with the demand for 2014 IS 250 F Sport and IS 350 F Sport models. At 3,200 units sold, the IS is certainly not a volume car for Lexus like the Toyota Camry. However, bear in mind that the Lexus IS is much more expensive, and likely much more profitable for Toyota. Also, with the new IS styling, which is dramatic, Lexus must be pleased that it has made gains in the marketplace.
Lexus did not break down the IS line into all its segments, but it did reveal that the F Sport models accounted for fully on third of all IS sales in September. Apparently, the bold spindle grill is a hit with buyers. It is anything but boring. In its last issue Motor Trend magazine called the IS F Sport ugly. Apparently buyers had a different opinion.
More important than sales numbers for Lexus may be the demographic data it shared. Although he did not break out the numbers in much detail, Lexus Group Vice President and General Manager Jeff Bracken did say that Lexus is hitting the trifecta in terms of its desired buyers. Apparently IS buyers are trending younger, more male, and buyers of the IS are coming over from other brands. Would you like to bet that the brand they are coming from starts with B and is not Buick?
Commenting on Lexus’ results Bracken said “IS launch activities will continue in full swing through October…while the re-designed GX will begin arriving at dealerships today, giving us another new model in the key luxury SUV market. We have some of the hottest new vehicles in the industry in the ES, IS and RX, combined with a good inventory situation. As a result, we expect history to repeat itself in 2013 with another strong Lexus finish.”
Like all luxury brands Lexus cars are sometimes bought as holiday gifts. The next few months’ sales will tell us a lot about the new IS and its relative success in the industry overall.