It's been rumored and alluded to so many times that we just began accepting it as fact, and now it is: Toyota has confirmed that Lexus will indeed get a version of the Toyota Prius. Based on the third-generation of the Prius hatchback that is set to debut in January at the Detroit Auto Show, the Lexus is expected to be a bit less fuel efficient, a bit more sporty and a lot more opulent. We have no idea what Toyota's luxury division will charge for its new hybrid, but it'll definitely be sold for a premium over its Toyota sibling.

A second dedicated hybrid model will join the new Lexus Prius. Lexus officials in Paris for the Motor Show have confirmed that it will not be sold in Europe alongside its upmarket Prius, which will show up in Europe in 2010. The reason? Its carbon emissions will be too high, which doesn't exactly bode well for fuel efficiency. One more salient detail was slipped, the third-gen Prius will emit 92 g/km of CO2, and a new low-emissions version will have CO2 emissions of 89g/km, which does indeed bode well for its mileage. We'll see how all of this translates early next year.

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

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