How Lexus Makes You Fall in Love with Hybrids

Lexus RC 1 photo
Photo: screenshot from Youtube
When the first hybrid went on sale, the first generation Toyota Prius, there was a bit of a problem regarding its desirability – it was looking like a dishwasher. However, things have moved on and hybrids now look as good as a standard gasoline-powered car, or even better...
There is still a concern among car lovers that hybrids are uncool because they look bland and are only built to be efficient, lacking any sportiness or elegance and offering a boring driving experience.

Well, that might apply to vehicles in the Prius range, because Lexus did something very special with its most recent hybrid added to the lineup.

For 2014, the Lexus IS got something more than just fancy looks, as the automaker added the option for a hybrid powertrain, making it one of the best hybrids on the market.

The 2.5-liter gasoline Atkinson-cycle engine aided by an electric motor in the gearbox makes a perfect combination with the IS' crazy styling, especially the F Sport version that comes with extra goodies like the full-mesh spindle grille and those extra side vents, 18-inch unique spoke rims, a Mark Levinson sounds system, special leather upholstery and that LFA-inspired instrument cluster jewel behind the steering wheel.

Sportiness in the IS comes from the new welding technology the automaker used to put together its stiff body along with a specially tuned suspension (also added by the F Sport pack). The Hybrid drive transmission, incorporating Electronic - Continuously Variable Transmission (E-CVT) can simulate gearshift changes pretty well long with engine braking, making the IS feel like a standard car.

This is how hybrids should be for car enthusiasts to like them. They need to combine electricity with something more than the engine and transmission. The final result should be a product of passion, embrace its driver and spoil his senses with thrills and refinement.

Luckily, Lexus is aware of this and the IS 300h F Sport manages to offer this unique combination. And if this is not enough for your style, wait until the new RC 300h will get into production. That's exactly what a “passion and style overdose” is.

The Lexus RC borrows somehow the IS' style, but it takes it to the extreme. Just by looking at its shapes you realize there is absolutely no other car in its class to offer such strange elegance and sportiness along with the possibility to fit the whole package with a hybrid powertrain. Unfortunately, the RC 300h will come with the same 2.5-liter 220 hp Atkinson-cycle engine. It would have been great to come with the 306 hp one from the GS 450h, but if the RC will enter production exactly as it looks in its reveal video, I assure you it will turn a lot of heads, without needing to rev it up around.
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