Toyota Boosts Production of Lexus HS 250h Luxury Hybrid

Toyota is reporting brisk sales of the Lexus HS 250h, its new hybrid-only luxury sedan that launched on July 14 in Japan. The company was targeting 500 sales per month, but has already received nearly 9,000 orders.

The Lexus HS250h—which will become the most efficient luxury vehicle on the US market when it begins selling in late August or early September—is rated at 35 mpg in the city and 34 on the highway. The base MSRP is $34,200. The Lexus HS 250h qualifies as a Super-Ultra-Low-Emission-Vehicle (SULEV).

According to Toyota officials, employees are working overtime to meet the demand in Japan—which is benefiting from a one-year subsidy for eco-friendly cars. Incentives in Japan have helped make the Toyota Prius the No. 1 selling car in Japan for the past three months, and helped put the 2010 Honda Insight in the top five since its introduction earlier this year. The eco-friendly incentives are scheduled to expire on March 31, 2010.

Toyota produced 2,000 units of the HS250h in July. Nikkei reports that Toyota will nearly triple the production of the Lexus HS 250h hybrid by October.


  • Shines

    Now if Ford could quickly make a Lincoln version of the Fusion/Milan it might easily outsell this Lexus by offereing just as much luxury, more room and better fuel efficiency.

  • qqRockyBeans

    Why couldn’t they offer an HS150h with the Prius’ engine, or maybe even the 1.8L

    Why doesn’t Toyota offer a non-hybrid four-cylinder Lexus? They could base it off the Corolla or Yaris and sell it for $25-30k, to compete with the Acura CSX

    The CSX Type-S would probably go for about $26000 if it was sold down here

  • Fan of Real Luxury

    I will keep my BMW 335d over this *luxury* Lexus any day. I easily get 39MPG on the highway. For sheer entertainment, flooring the accelerator makes all passengers scream like school girls because the car is so fast. And yes, diesel is slightly dirtier than gasoline, but I use some biodiesel – not something you can do with a gasoline car. And a diesel will last 200-300K miles, cutting down on the waste of building an entirely new cars.

    For those who will poo-poo the 335d city mileage of 23 MPG, I drive a Honda hybrid for in-town errands. If you are limited to one car, this Lexus might be the way to go. Clearly it is loaded down with batteries as the highway MPG is worse than the city – a signature of Toyota’s hybrid approach.

  • Fan of ONE TRUE luxury

    Fan of Real Luxury,
    So you still need a Hybrid for in-town errands? LOL. Should use public transport to feel even better.
    By the way, difference b/w 34 and 35 MPG is about 0.2 litre/100km.

  • Dj

    This is a call out to all American car maker`s…….Lexus is kicking our ass in the hybrid department and the only American company that is close is Ford and they rent their Hybrid system from Lexus.
    Now I can`t be upset at Lexus for doing their jobs as a car company.They just make good car and truck but Detriot is
    stuck on SUV.The only one that see the future is Ford……fake
    it to you make your own car……

    Dj

  • Robcares

    I think the real story here is; Japanese car manufacturers are getting it, you need a design that at first glance says “HYBRID”. As much as buyers of Hybrids want to save on gas and maybe help the planet, more importantly, they want everyone around them to know they are driving one. I think the poor showing in sales of the Civic Hybrid bares this idea out. The Detroit Dinosaurs still don’t see what’s going on. Why is it the GM can make a 100 mile range EV-1, but can’t make a 40 mile (electric only) Volt? Because they still see Hybrids as a niche market that’s too small to get involved with. They still believe that Americans still want SUVs, and the market share supports this idea, and Lutz said as much the other day. It’s the American public that just doesn’t get it, most still don’t believe that man is at least partly responsible for global climate change. Until the price of gas hits $5.00+ nothing will really change.

  • confused

    That is the nicest Toyota Corolla I’ve ever seen.

  • David

    GM could probably make the EV-1 again but I don’t think anyone want to pay 6-8 figures for a batteyr powered rollerskate. When are people going to remember that the $400+/mo lease payments didn’t even cover maintenance costs on these cars? It wasn’t just GM, but people who worked in the supply chain who said this. Yes, it’s true that the ‘owners’ didn’t want to part with them, but the fact of the matter was that GM didn’t want to keep losing money every month on a car that was ridiculously expensive even when, effectively, *given* away.

    I just wish they kept the research going instead of totally ending the program.

  • steved28

    Dj,

    Ford rents there system from Lexus??? So much mis-information on the web. Ford developed their own hybrid technology.

  • Bryce

    This is definetly a nicer version of a Corolla….which I guess could be called an improvement. I had expected perhaps 40ish mpg considering it is the size of a corolla and only uses a four banger engine.

  • Robcares

    David, it’s time to put this high cost of manufacturing the EV-1 myth to rest. Yes the cost of the EV-1 was high, however, that is largely because GM never intended to mass produce them. I have worked in manufacturing all of my adult life (more then I’d like to admit), and for an O.E.M. (Original Equipment Manufacturer) supplier as a mid-level manager for a number of years. In manufacturing, the greater the quantity, the lower the price, so if GM was serious about the EV-1 they would be less expensive to make in mass. The assembly plant would be more sophisticated also reducing cost. In addition to all of that, O.E.M. contracts for components usually run for a few years, and the customer usually has a built-in further reduction in price each year of the contract because they expect the supplier to improve the fabrication process over time, which we do. The battery is a problem, however Honda and Toyota have figured out how to handle that, so there really is no reason GM can’t do the same.

    It was widely reported that Toyota lost money on the Prius the first couple of years they made them because of the low quantity sold, I doubt that that is still the case.

    The Detroit Dinosaurs aren’t willing to take the initial hit to establish a competitor to Toyota, and why should they, we’ll just bail them out when they fail. The Volt will be too expensive and fail to sell and GM will kill it and claim nobody wanted them, it was all along just an attempt to green the brand, how sad.

  • HCH Story

    @Robcares

    I think HCH “failed” not because people can’t show it off as a green symbol. It failed because there was very little distinction from the regular civic for the price difference. As an example, GM often commits this sin by offering similar cars across different brands. In other words, to be a success, HCH either has to offer much better value than the regular civic (failed) or tap into market segments not served by the regular civic (failed). One way Honda could have done this is to offer HCH hatchback, but they didn’t for whatever reason.

    Honda appears to be learning by developing Insight as a hatchback, which I believe would have had the same success if it was based on the civic platform. As matter of fact, I’d still love to see a HCH hatchback over the Insight since HCH has a more advanced hybrid system. This combination could be a very strong competition to the 3rd gen prius if they can make the price point work. I suspect Honda realized long ago HCH can’t be price competitive with Prius with a hatchback before they decided on developing the Insight…

  • Rudolf

    What do the letters “HS” stand for?

  • DaveT

    “the only American company that is close is Ford and they rent their Hybrid system from Lexus.”

    You only got that 1st half right DJ. Make no mistake – the Fusion HEV platform, unlike Ford’s earlier Escape HEV offerings, was another independent effort and steered free of Toyota’s IP (and it’s likely Toyota has moved beyond licensing from Ford as in that old cross licensing deal (even back then it was not a one way deal and Ford’s system was still materially different)).

    Test drive a Fusion HEV and then judge where you think Ford is on the product innovation and quality level. You might be shocked at the game shift.

  • Lexus Repair Questions

    Lexus Hybrid cars would be great. This is becoming the trend today – the use of more efficient cars. I can see that in the next 20 years our world would be full of this kind of car.