Perhaps it's the gas mileage rating of 35 mpg city, 34 mpg highway. Perhaps it's the tax breaks offered in Japan for hybrid vehicles, or perhaps it's because it's Lexus' only dedicated hybrid model, but whatever the cause is, Lexus surely isn't complaining that pre-orders for the Lexus HS 250h have exceeded their expectations by a factor of twenty.
In it's first month of sales in Japan, the HS received 10,000 pre-orders, far exceeding Toyota's anticipated sales target of only 500 units per month. Due to the tremendous amount of orders, customers must now wait until February to receive their HS, according to a Toyota spokesperson.
The U.S. market is set to receive their HS 250H models next month, but the spark in demand could affect delivery schedules and would certainly affect how long customers must wait to receive their orders here.
According to the Toyota spokesperson speaking about U.S. supply of the hybrid, "We hope there won't be a problem, but we'll see."
The Lexus HS 250 went on sale in Japan on July 14th. Sales have been sparked by new tax breaks from the Japanese government on the sale of green vehicles. The vehicle has a base price of $35,075 and offers a four cylinder hybrid powertrain that returns 35 mpg city, 34 mpg highway.
Lexus hopes the vehicle will win back younger buyers who have gone over to BMW and Mercedes. They believe that its low price will drive buyers back into showrooms. The success in the Japanese market is surprising, but we will have to wait and see if U.S. buyers welcome the HS with the same level of orders.
Source: Automotive News (Login required)