Fuel economy; responsive hybrid powertrain; standard luxury features; safety gear; advanced technology; trunk space
Following its introduction to the Lexus lineup in 2010, the HS 250h carries over to 2011 with no significant changes.
Lexus designed the HS 250h from the ground up to be a hybrid vehicle. As such, it manages to achieve 35 combined mpg yet still maintain Lexus standards of comfort and performance. Safety is also a focus of the new HS-- it features a total of ten airbags and class-leading accident-avoidance features. Standard features are very generous, but some exciting technology is optional, such as Lane-Keep Assist, a Heads-Up Display and a 15-speaker Mark Levinson sound system.
Lexus designed the HS 250h to be a hybrid from the beginning. Unlike Lexus' other hybrid models, which are based on existing vehicles and then adapted to use hybrid powertrains, the HS 250h was always intended to be a premium hybrid car that would blend fuel efficiency, solid performance and luxury appointments.
The HS 250h is offered in two different models: base and Premium. Both come with a version of Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive, pairing a 147-horsepower, 2.5-liter Atkinson Cycle 4-cylinder engine with an electric motor system, regenerative braking and a battery pack. Altogether the system produces up to 187 hp and achieves EPA fuel economy ratings of 35 mpg city, 34 highway--all on regular gas.
Performance from the hybrid system is actually quite good; it can accelerate to 60 mph in 8.4 seconds, according to Lexus. At higher speeds, the HS 250h's aerodynamic body and 0.27 coefficient of drag aid both performance and fuel economy while also reducing wind noise.
A MacPherson strut front suspension and double-wishbone rear suspension help provide good sharp handling, and steering is provided by a rack-and-pinion design with electric power assist.
The HS 250h has seating for five adults, along with a quite large trunk. However taller drivers might find headroom tight. Throughout the interior--such as for the standard upholstery and some trim--Lexus used bioplastic materials from plant sources. About 30 percent of interior and trunk trim components use so-called ecological plastics. The focal point of the interior is the swoopy instrument panel and its Remote Touch control, which utilizes a trackball-like controller in the center of the console. It controls menus and navigation-system functions with relative ease.
All HS 250h models come with a multi-information display that uses high-contrast OLED technology and displays fuel consumption, range and power flow for the hybrid system. There's also an Eco Drive light that helps the driver find the most fuel-efficient driving style.
Safety features are more abundant in the HS 250h than in many more expensive luxury cars at its price. Airbags include front and rear side, curtain and knee for both front occupants--a total of ten -- are all standard. Active head restraints are also standard, as are electronic stability control, anti-lock brakes and Brake Assist.
The base model HS comes with a feature list that most buyers will be happy with--including a sunroof, power heated mirrors, power seats, a smart-key system, a garage-door opener, dual-zone climate control, rear air conditioning vents and a 10-speaker sound system with 6-disc changer, USB and auxiliary inputs. Options on the base include a Touring Package that brings 18-inch wheels, 2-tone heated leather seats and other appearance upgrades including LED headlamps and wood trim.
The optional navigation system includes XM NavTraffic and NavWeather features, which integrate live traffic and weather conditions with navigation maps and routing, as well as XM Sports & Stocks. Lexus Enform is another suite of services that include a navigation system with Destination Assist and eDestination, which allow the navigation system to be programmed remotely, and access to a live concierge. A backup monitor and wide-view front monitor are also available.
Upgrading to the Premium model brings leather upholstery, wood trim, heated-and-ventilated front seats, heated side mirrors with puddle lamps, and rain-sensing wipers, among other extras. Options excusive to the Premium include Lane Keep Assist, which reads the pavement striping, sounds an alarm and even nudges the vehicle back into the lane. Dynamic radar cruise control maintains a set distance to vehicles ahead. A heads-up display, park assist, a pre-collision system and a driver attention monitor that reads the driver's face for telltale patterns of fatigue are all available as well as part of a $3,900 Tech Package.
Vehicle Price: 37,205.00
*Estimated payments are for informational purposes only and don't account for acquisition fees, destination charges, tax, title, and other fees and incentives or represent a financing offer or guarantee of credit from the seller.
Equipment that may affect values (standard equipment is pre-selected):
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