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Report: Lexus HS 250h not meeting volume projections in U.S.

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Old 05-05-10, 01:12 PM   #1
Hoovey2411
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Default Report: Lexus HS 250h not meeting volume projections in U.S.

Report: Lexus HS 250h not meeting volume projections in U.S.


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The last time we drove one of Lexus' new HS 250h hybrid sedans, we found the experience to be about what you might expect. That is to say, eminently usable and well-designed with reasonable driving dynamics. We liked it, though we pointed out that the styling is pretty bland and performance is merely adequate.

We can't say for certain whether that staid styling or its lack of driving emotion may be holding it back in the marketplace, but Wards Auto reports that the HS 250h is failing to live up to the sales volume projections set out by Lexus when the car was introduced late last year.

Since initially going on sale last August, Lexus has sold 11,228 HS hybrids. Last month, Toyota's luxury division moved just 1,076 units, which makes for a grand total of 4,529 since 2010 kicked off five months ago. A quick calculation tells us that full-year sales, assuming they remain at something resembling a steady pace, will be under 14,000 units.

Lexus had previously set a target of 20,000-22,000 HS 250h sales in America – and even that figure represented a lowered expectation from the 25,000-30,000 sales initially quoted before Japanese consumers started ordering the model up at a faster-than-expected rate.

Why the below-par sales stats? Says Mark Templin, vice president of Toyota's Lexus division, "I think we underestimated the power of the Prius brand... And we overestimated what the market would look like based on gas prices. But if we can do over 1,000 units a month, 1,000-1,500 units a month, we feel really good about what we're doing in the marketplace."

http://www.autoblog.com/2010/05/05/r...ctions-in-u-s/
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Old 05-05-10, 01:15 PM   #2
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This is actually being discussed in the April Sales Thread.

1SICKLEX has some good points about it...

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Originally Posted by 1SICKLEX View Post
We all know the HS hasn't hit sales goals it is no secret and their best months were with CFC. I've driven it extensively and it is a nice car but it has a few things not in its favor

-styling is very ho hum at best
-pricing is very high, it starts at nearly $35,000 and hits 40k then 45k with options! It is not cheap!
-MPG is best for a luxury car but I think a 40 MPG rating would have gotten more attention.
-Gas prices still are not at levels where people will jump to more fuel efficient cars
-the interior is different and people might not want that in a Lexus
-it drives remarkably well but Lexus marketing is not showing that, just talking about tech instead.

What is stated is true though, the HS is incremental in sales so its really just adding to the bottom line and adding additional volume which is good. As gas prices continue to rise I expect sales to rise as well.
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Old 05-05-10, 01:27 PM   #3
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Thats because its a dressed up 30k Corolla. Just save up and buy a used 450h.
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Old 05-05-10, 01:50 PM   #4
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don't we all just love beating on dead horses...

i wonder if Lexus will keep the HS around if the CT succeeds here in the US?
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Old 05-05-10, 01:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilipMSPT View Post
This is actually being discussed in the April Sales Thread.

1SICKLEX has some good points about it...
All these points pretty much sums it up.
There is high demand for the HS in Japan. I wonder if the US will ever follow suit.
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Old 05-05-10, 01:57 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilipMSPT View Post
This is actually being discussed in the April Sales Thread.

1SICKLEX has some good points about it...
Agreed, the points made really address the HS challenges.
IMO, a (2010 only) loaded Prius is actually a better looking alternative.



But nothing that can't he helped by $4.00+ per gallon gas in the US.
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Old 05-05-10, 02:01 PM   #7
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I could've told them that the HS250h wouldn't meet sales expectations. An ESh would've sold more than the HS.
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Old 05-05-10, 02:03 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G Star View Post
I could've told them that the HS250h wouldn't meet sales expectations. An ESh would've sold more than the HS.
They could've charged more for an ESh too and it STILL would have sold more (see: RXh sales)
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Old 05-05-10, 03:07 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lexmenow View Post
Thats because its a dressed up 30k Corolla. Just save up and buy a used 450h.

(Sniff, sniff) I smell a troll .
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Old 05-05-10, 05:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canesguy View Post
(Sniff, sniff) I smell a troll .
well this thread was initially in the CAR CHAT forum so I don't think that that guy is technically a troll. The mods just moved it to the HS forum after I posted. Anyway since the HS isn't selling so hot, you're car is truly one in a million...
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Old 05-05-10, 07:13 PM   #11
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Anyway since the HS isn't selling so hot, you're car is truly one in a million...
That's the reason I got a good deal and I'm lovin' that, getting 40 mpg in luxury and not seeing one at every corner .
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Old 05-05-10, 07:33 PM   #12
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Right - we'll always have an exclusive car :-) On my way to my car today after work, I happened to look at the other cars in the lot. Just counting one side of the row I was parked on, I saw 6 Accords, 3 3-series BMW's, 3 Mazda 3's, and then my HS. Just weird, but made me glad I didn't own one of those other cars. The uniqueness was a selling point for me. Same for the Saab 95 wagon (RIP) I owned before this.

I'm thinking that CT200 might have a hard time selling as well. Both are having a hard time identifying who their target market is.
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Old 05-05-10, 07:52 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magellan55 View Post
Right - we'll always have an exclusive car :-) On my way to my car today after work, I happened to look at the other cars in the lot. Just counting one side of the row I was parked on, I saw 6 Accords, 3 3-series BMW's, 3 Mazda 3's, and then my HS. Just weird, but made me glad I didn't own one of those other cars. The uniqueness was a selling point for me. Same for the Saab 95 wagon (RIP) I owned before this.

I'm thinking that CT200 might have a hard time selling as well. Both are having a hard time identifying who their target market is.
Well the CT is for young people who want a little luxury, so it's market it a little more defined plus there's very little competition.

The HS is fighting in a crowded segment. You can get an A4 or Acura TSX for $3-5K cheaper and still get 30+mpg highway.
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Old 05-05-10, 08:11 PM   #14
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Won't the CT compete with the A3 (esp the TDI), the Volvo C30, the BMW 128, Mini, and the new Fiat 500?
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Old 05-05-10, 08:52 PM   #15
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Aztec was "unique" too....

I like the HS250, but the price was too high for the little that you got. A Camry Hybrid with the nearly-identical powertrain was at least $5k cheaper (loaded TCH vs. base HS)...and the Camry is much bigger inside. Cargo space is debatable because TCH allows for folding rear seatback. My loaded to the max Prius V is still cheaper than a base HS and it has techy stuff on it that only a loaded HS can match (aka $48k!). The Lexus guy is right...when people want hybrid, they generally look at Prius. The HS needs to have better MPGs and a more sophisticated powertrain...a powertrain that is, at least, a major update from the old tech Camry Hybrid. Now, you have major competitions on the way from other brands...and most of the competitions have better MPGs and more updated powertrain technology.

I understand that Hybrid technology is rapidly evolving, but it just plain sucks that the HS is already outdated just a few months after being introduced...and the competition is beating it at its own game (efficiency and MPGs). Whatever happened to Toyota/Lexus being the leader of hybrid technology? Here was a chance for Lexus to really lead the way...and what do they do? They introduced a Corolla-lookalike (yes, it is not a Corolla, but a regular bystander will think it is a Lexus Corolla) with a way outdated powertrain from a Camry Hybrid that debuted 3-4 years ago! Why?!! IMHO, they should have introduced the CT FIRST because, at least, the CT has the most updated hybrid technology with easily the best MPGs at least for the next few years. Then, in 1-2 years, once Li-battery gets going, Lexus would introduce the HS with Li-battery and updated powertrain.
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