Lexus has confirmed that a more affordable hybrid model will join the new GS range by the end of 2013.
The new car will be the third model variant and will sit alongside the GS 450h and GS 250.
New smaller GS hybrid
President and Managing Director of Toyota Lexus GB, Jon Williams, confirmed the fourth generation GS saloon line-up would get a downsized hybrid variant.
Details of the new car’s engine are yet to be confirmed, but it will be smaller than the 3.5-litre V6 in the GS 450h and possibly also the new 206bhp 2.5-litre V6 GS 250.
It is thought a retuned version of the firm’s 1.8-litre petrol-electric drivetrain in the CT 200h could find its way into the smallest GS hybrid, featuring a more powerful electric motor.
Affordable hybrid, improved efficiency
The new car would be significantly cheaper than the range-topping £44,995 GS 450h, and would also deliver efficiency gains over this model’s 137g/km CO2 emissions.
This would make the new GS hybrid a direct competitor to the current crop of eco diesels, such as the BMW 520 Efficient Dynamics saloon, which emits 119g/km CO2.
No plans for diesel GS
According to Lexus, there are no plans for a turbodiesel GS, despite its direct competitors Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz all offering high-efficiency diesel engines in their A6, 5 Series and E-class line-ups.
Instead, the Japanese firm is persevering with its hybrid technology to achieve improvements in efficiency. Expect more information on the car closer to the Paris Motor Show in September.