In 1993, a mid-sized sport sedan, the GS 300 was launched, which was priced just below the LS 400. That same year, a certified pre-owned program was also debuted by Lexus, making it one of the first marques to reach this distinction. In 1994, a complete redesign of Lexus’s flagship model, the 2nd generation LS 400 was made available on the markets. However, sales were threatened and operations were halted in 1995, due to the US government’s tariff proposal for upscale Japanese vehicles. Normal sales operations were resumed later that year, after it was decided the tariffs would not be imposed.
The LX 450, Lexus’s first sport utility vehicle debuted in 1996 and this was followed by their 3rd generation sedan, the ES 300. During the 1995 tariff discussions, plans were being made for the development of an SUV model. This gave the marque its first luxury crossover SUV, named the RX 300, as well as 2nd generation sedans, the GS 300 and GS 400, in 1998. After the success of the RX 300, Lexus launched sales in Brazil in the same year. The marque sold its millionth vehicle in the US market, the next year in 1999.