Lexus fixes the only problem with its new 2014 IS 350 and IS 250
When an automaker takes a big risk to create a new design of a moderately successful vehicle it has to cross its fingers. Will the vehicle succeed? Will it fail? Will its sales number remain unchanged? In the case of the new 2014 Lexus IS 350 and IS 250, Lexus decided to try to unseat the venerable BMW 335i and BMW 328i as the top choice in the segment that car defined. Many have tried to best that model, all have failed. Until now. Lexus’s IS sales have skyrocketed and the company had been having trouble meeting demand. Today the company announced it has caught up, and it is just in the St. Nick of time.
Today Lexus released the sales numbers for the 2014 IS 350 and IS 250. The model has again shattered expectations and has sold 4,000 units in the month of November. That is literally double what the previous design sold last November. Lexus Group Vice President and General Manager Jeff Bracken delivered the good news today on a conference call reviewing the Toyota and Lexus sales results. He also pointed out that the Lexus IS 250 and IS 350 now enjoy the youngest average buyer age in the segment. That is exactly what Lexus was striving for and it has achieved its goal. The IS is intended to be the “gateway” Lexus, leading affluent buyers into the brand and getting them addicted.
Fully half of the people that are buying 2014 Lexus IS 250 and IS 350s are new to Lexus. That is amazing and exactly what the brand needs. New, younger buyers drive the future of any brand, but in the luxury segment bringing in new buyers is very difficult. Last month Lexus reported that buyers were overwhelmingly choosing the high-end F-Sport versions of the new IS. New, younger buyers snatching up the most expensive version of a new model, what else could anyone ask for?
To make the scenario even more surreal for Lexus, the production of the 2014 IS 250 and IS 350 has finally caught up to the surging demand. The timing could not be better. Toyota says that 25% of its sales in November came after Thanksgiving. That is crazy consider that Thanksgiving was on the 28th of a month with 30 days! December is always Lexus’ best month historically and its marketing budget is hugely skewed towards gift buyers. It looks like Santa may have some fun picking out new sports sedans this year.