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Toyota is adding another hybrid sedan--the Sai--for the Japanese market

Wed, 30 Sep 2009 00:00:00 -0700

The Toyota brand is getting another hybrid sedan in the Japanese market, a sister model to the Lexus HS 250h that will sport a more powerful engine than the Prius hatchback.

The car, to be named the Toyota Sai, will go on sale in Japan on Oct. 20, Toyota Motor Corp. said today. The Sai will be the second model marketed as a hybrid-only offering under the Toyota badge, after the Prius.

Toyota did not say whether the Sai will go on sale in the United States. Spokespeople in Tokyo declined to give additional details on the model.

A dealer in Japan said the car will share the same platform and hybrid drivetrain as the Lexus HS 250h. That car, Lexus' first hybrid-only ride, arrived in Japanese showrooms in July.

The HS 250h went on sale in the U.S. in mid-September.

The Sai will have the same 2.4-liter gasoline engine, bigger than the 1.8-liter powerplant in the Prius. But its exterior and interior will differ from the HS 250h, the dealer said.

Toyota has not announced pricing.

By Hans Greimel- Automotive News