2009 Lexus HS 250h - Click above for high-res image gallery

Even though there have been plenty of reports that Toyota would apply the Prius name to other hybrids in its lineup, thereby creating a Prius sub-brand, the upcoming second dedicated hybrid from the Japanese automaker bearing the Toyota name will be simply named the Toyota Sai. The Sai goes on sale in Japan on October 20th and slots in between the Prius and the Crown hybrid.

Featuring a more powerful engine than the Prius (a 2.4-liter gasoline engine compared to the 1.8-liter in the Prius), the Sai will look similar to the Lexus HS 250h (pictured) and will be based on the same underpinnings. Lexus has been selling the HS 250h in Japan since July and in the U.S. for a few weeks.

Toyota isn't giving out any clues about the car's overseas potential, but if the car ever comes to the U.S., it'll join the Camry hybrid as a pretty solid competitor to the Ford Fusion hybrid. There's a market for some Toyota badge engineering mixed with hybrid tech here, right?

[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req'd]

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