Lexus confirms plans to build a BMW 1-Series rival

Next year, Lexus is expected to add a small dedicated hybrid model to its lineup. In an effort to meet CAFE and European CO2 regulations, Lexus will also add another model that will fit under the Lexus IS. The baby-Lexus, which will take on the BMW 1-Series, was recently confirmed by the company’s managing director Tadashi Arashima.

Arashima didn’t give out any possible launch dates or technical specs, but it is said that the compact rear-wheel-drive Lexus won’t arrive until next decade. We might see an entry-level 4-cylinder and a V6 range-topper.

The dedicated hybrid, which will share its architecture with the Toyota Prius, will be shown in concept form at the 2009 Detroit Auto Show in January 2009. The car is reported to be powered by a 2.0 or 2.5 liter 4-cylinder engine that will be mated to a nickel-hydride battery.


Source: CAR