Lexus’ first full electric vehicle has arrived in Singapore, but the UX 300e’s appeal is curbed by some of its limitations
Photos: CarBuyer Team
While many carmakers are making the shift towards fully electrifying their fleet over the next decade, Toyota (and by extension Lexus) are insisting that internal combustion engines will be here to stay for a while yet. Which, given their status as pioneers of hybrid technology, can be seen as a rather surprising position to take.
But while Toyota and Lexus are holding out on hybrids for now, the electric vehicle (EV) movement is simply too big to ignore entirely. And so, the company has now presented its first full production battery electric vehicle (BEV), the Lexus UX 300e.
Given how Lexus has built its reputation on luxurious comfort and refinement, it’s perhaps strange why the brand has not embraced the idea of silent electric motoring more enthusiastically. In the same vein, basing their first EV on the entry-level UX crossover, instead of perhaps a flagship sedan like the LS, does seem a bit odd.
Nevertheless, Lexus has dipped its toes into the EV world now, and it appears that they are doing it with caution. The UX 300e doesn’t look significantly different from the regular-engined models from the outside, and the only identifiers are the ‘Electric’ badges on the lower rear doors, and two flaps on the rear fender that reveal the car’s dual charging outlet.
Which brings us to the UX 300e’s biggest issue, and one which is not entirely its fault really. You see, one of the charging flaps hides a regular Type 2 outlet, meant for slower AC charging. The other flap however reveals a CHAdeMO outlet, and this is supposedly meant for fast charging.
The problem is, Singapore currently does not have any public CHAdeMO charging stations, and so if you want to quickly re-juice your UX 300e, you’ll have to install your own CHAdeMO charger at home. Otherwise, your only option for charging the car in Singapore would be the Type 2 AC charger, which is significantly slower than the CCS fast chargers that are available here. Again, this incompatibility with our local fast charging infrastructure is not really the car’s fault, but it is something to keep in mind if you’re considering buying one.