Rumours of a Lexus-branded dedicated hybrid model have existed for some time, however it's only now that speculative renderings of what such a car may look like are starting to surface.
Japanese buff mag Mag X has published these artist's impressions of the Lexus hybrid, upon which they have bestowed the moniker "HS250h". Mag-X reckons the new unique-to-Lexus hybrid will have a 2.4-litre petrol engine hooked up to Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive system. Given that Lexus's naming protocol for its other petrol-electric models adds about one litre of virtual 'capacity', the HS250h badge suggests that displacement will be significantly less than 2.5 litres.
In terms of shape, Mag-X's rendering shows a car that's definitely the baby of the Lexus stable, with a body that's almost Corolla-like in its proportions. Despite the snazzy (but predictable) tail lights, twin rear exhaust outlets and generous lashings of chrome, the magazine image doesn't do it any favours (let's hope for something better in the 'metal'). There's none of the angular sportiness of the IS, none of the GS's understated elegance and definitely none of the LS's imposing styling in the HS250h, which leaves the pint-sized hybrid sedan looking pretty, well... ho-hum.
Lexus fans need not get too hung up over these drawings however, as the real deal will be unveiled soon at the Detroit Auto Show in January. Just cross your fingers and hope the finished product looks a bit more Lexus-y than this.