Lexus has confirmed that production of its slow-selling HS 250h has ceased and that the division's first dedicated hybrid-only luxury vehicle will effectively be replaced by the new 2013 Lexus ES 300h Hybrid model that goes on sale this fall. Introduced in late 2009 as a 2010 model and based on platform architecture shared with the Gen III Toyota Prius, this compact four-door sedan came out of the box strong, selling 10,663 units in calendar year 2010. But with the arrival of the similarly scaled but more fuel-efficient Lexus CT 200h hatchback, those figures began to steadily fall.
With year-to-date sales of barely 600 and the all-new ES300h Hybrid looming on the horizon, Lexus decided to drop the HS 250h in favor of this new and improved gas-electric version of its perennial best-selling model, the ES Series. Sharing much of its basic hybrid hardware with the latest-generation Toyota Camry Hybrid, the new 2013 Lexus ES 300h is expected to earn a 40-mpg combined EPA rating compared to the HS 250h's 35-mpg stat.