Lexus was launched amid much ballyhoo in 1989, when Toyota's luxury division unveiled the LS400. It was a brave new direction for Toyota, which to this moment, had been relying on the Crown as its main range-topper. The Lexus project (for Luxury EXport US) originated in 1983, with the beginnings of the LS400, and seven years later, would join Acura and Infiniti as 'invented' Japanese marques to challenge the European establishment.
The Lexus quickly expanded via the GS and Soarer throughout the 1990s, as well as the IS, RX and LF-A in the 21st century. And following a corporate reorganisation between 2001 to 2005, Lexus became an autonomous design, engineering, and manufacturing epartment within Toyota.