Lexus GS450 Hybrid

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The Lexus sedan is rear wheel drive only (the first rear wheel drive hybrid ever offered) and uses hybrid technology that is similar to the Lexus RX400h SUV currently on the market. The price of the Lexus 450h GS Hybrid Sedan is in the $40,000 – $50,000 range with gas mileage equivalent to a 2-liter, 4-cylinder vehicle (25 mpg city / 28 mpg highway) and rated as a super ultra-low emission vehicle (SULEV).
The Lexus hybrid car employs a 3.5 liter V6 engine combined with an electric motor and horsepower equivalent to a 4.5 liter V8 (300+ hp). Acceleration from 0-60 mph is under 6 seconds. By comparison, the Lexus Hybrid RX400h SUV will do 0-60 mph in just 7.3 seconds, which is quite peppy for an SUV.

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The Lexus 450h GS Hybrid Sedan employs the use of an electric motor, or permanent magnetic motor, as they are calling it. The motor is expected to be equal to or slightly more powerful than that currently used in the Lexus Hybrid RX400h SUV.

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According to Lexus Vice President of Marketing Mark Templin, “Once again, we’ve applied our formula of no compromise engineering – this time to a luxury sport sedan which proves to us that hybrid power trains can work superbly in virtually any application. It’s very important to continue pursuing substantial reductions in fuel consumption and emissions, while continuing to improve performance and driving pleasure. Our customers wouldn’t have it any other way.”

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Though there is much excitement surrounding the introduction of the Lexus hybrid car, there is also some criticism as well. The critics are wondering out loud if Lexus is compromising fuel economy by delivering its 300+ horsepower performance. The Prius, they say gets around 60 mpg while the Lexus 450h GS Hybrid Sedan is only in the mid to high 20’s. Despite the criticism, though, the Lexus 450h GS Hybrid Sedan opens up a whole new market, for those who want luxury, better performance and fuel efficiency all in one car.

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One might think that Lexus’ motivation is to sell more hybrid cars. That is not so, according to Lexus. Their motivation is simply to sell more Lexus cars. With the addition of hybrid technology, Lexus expects to do just that: sell more cars.

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Scribbled on December 25th 2008 in Lexus
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