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Yes, Lexus is really building a minivan

by Ronan Glon

We'll see it in person at the 2019 Shanghai auto show.

Confirming an earlier rumor, Lexus announced it will travel to the 2019 Shanghai auto show to unveil its first minivan. The LM will arrive as a more luxurious evolution of the Toyota Alphard van sold in several global markets, and it will be positioned near the top of the Lexus line-up as one of its range-topping vehicles.

The Japanese firm published a dark teaser image that shows the side of its upcoming minivan wears chrome-look trim shaped like a backwards Z. An earlier preview image gave us a glimpse at the front end, which features sharp headlights with the V-shaped LED daytime running lights found on other Lexus models, and the company's huge spindle grille.

Motor Authority learned Lexus trade-marked the LM 350 and LM 300h nameplates. This move suggests buyers will have at least two powertrain configurations to choose from, and one of them will be a gasoline-electric hybrid system. Full technical specifications haven't been released yet, however.

Lexus will fully unveil the LM in the days leading up to the 2019 Shanghai auto show, which opens its doors on April 15. The model will go on sale in China -- and, possibly, in other global markets -- before the end of 2019. Don't expect to see it in the United States, however, where Lexus has no plans to enter the minivan segment.

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