New hybrid model is essentially a Toyotafied version of the Lexus HS250h
If the all-new Toyota Sai Hybrid looks familiar – it should. The new Toyota hybrid model is based very closely on the new Lexus HS platform. Sold as a premium Lexus luxury car in North America, the same car will be down-graded somewhat for sale in its home market. Even the design is almost identical (due to aerodynamic reasons), although the Sai does get some half-unique body panels, as well as head and taillights.
Like the HS, the Sai gets a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine mated to an electric motor and battery pack in true Hybrid Synergy Drive fashion. This is good for a total of 187hp, a 0-60 mph time of 8.4 seconds and a rather incredible 54 mpg average fuel economy rating. That rating, says Toyota, puts the Sai on par with 660cc micro cars.
The Sai will go on sale soon in Japan as a slightly more up-market and more powerful alternative to the Prius.
GALLERY: 2010 Toyota Sai Hybrid
Official release after the jump: