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Think of the words "luxury" and "hybrid" and the name Lexus should come to mind. Toyota's luxury division offers gas-electric hybrid versions of the RX, GS and LS models, but while parent company Toyota has the hybrid-only Prius model, Lexus has yet to offer a dedicated hybrid of its own. According to Toyota's president Katsuaki Watanabe, by this time next year that will change.

Watanabe announced at the Detroit show that at the same show next year his company will unveil two new dedicated hybrid models. While one is known to be the replacement for the highly-successful Toyota Prius, the second will be Lexus' first hybrid-only model.

Few details on the Lexus hybrid are known at this point, but Toyota can't be happy to have been beaten to the punch by a comparatively tiny outfit when Fisker took the wraps off the Karma hybrid luxury sedan at the show this year. That car, however, is likely a long ways off from production, and it's technically a series hybrid like the Chevy Volt rather than a parallel hybrid like the Prius, so Toyota may still be able to lay claim to the world's first hybrid-only luxury car.

[Source: Automotive News – sub. req'd]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      "Damn, as if the Prius wasn't already overprice. "

      The Prius cost as much as most Family sedan's some small CUV's, which are about the same size as the Prius. And also a weaken Dollar seem to raise the cost on all Imports.

      As to the Lexus coasting as much as 15k, well that’s just making a good profit.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Toyota (Lexus) really needs to shake up this hybrid game.

      A solid performer with 60+ MPG would probably do it, and frankly there is no reason why Toyota couldn't pull it off.

      I would love to buy a Prius--or even a lux version of it--but if you drive it, it already feels 4 years old and the 48 MPG that you actually get isn't really a game changer.
        • 7 Years Ago
        48 MPG is game changing if you consider that Prius is much larger than Civic/Cobalt/Corolla/Focus and more Camry/Malibu sized on the inside.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Because nothing says 'Environmentally Friendly" quite like nice cowhide, real wood on the dash, 500lbs of chemicals riding underfoot, all thrown together by one of the largest corporations on the planet.
        • 7 Years Ago
        It won't be a game changer if it's a hybrid with 300 HP. What ever happened to the Promise of "Automation", where I'd be able to order the car exactly the way I want it, without the HP Pig Engine?

        • 7 Years Ago
        "A solid performer with 60+ MPG would probably do it, and frankly there is no reason why Toyota couldn't pull it off."

        Toyota needs to work on making a SLOW car with 60+ MPG before they work on a "solidly performing" one.
      • 7 Years Ago
      It's pretty friggin smart. In San Francisco- I'd say the demographic of Prius owners sways WAY towards the highly affluent side of things. People moving 'down market' from MB/BMWs into hybrids.. who still want the comforts (heated seats, sunroofs, better customer service) they're used to without the compromise of seeming or being less than aware of eco issues. I hope Lexus innovates the idea (recycled seats, tree planting with purchase, light weight materials, telematics) rather than just re-branding. Should be interesting.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Guess the notion that Cadillac having the first dedicated green luxury vehicle must have pissed them off.
        • 7 Years Ago
        I wonder what'll get to market first.