Hybrids have come a long way in the last few years, and the 2012 Lexus HS 250h is a prime example of just how much they’ve evolved. This sedan is quiet, composed and chock-full of high tech equipment.
The most notable feature of any hybrid vehicle is its pairing of gasoline engine and electric motor. The 2012 250h actually has a pair of electric motors that work with the car’s 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine to produce 187 hp. The optional navigation system is a very nice touch, and there’s a surprising amount of space in the trunk for such a small car.
Changes for 2012
Lexus made no changes to the 2012 model from 2011.
What We Like
There’s a lot to like about the 2012 Lexus HS 250h, particularly the very quiet operation. The car’s build quality is what you’d expect from Lexus, and the electronics and controls are very user friendly as well. It’s also faster off the mark than you might expect for a hybrid vehicle, particularly if you’ve ever driven some of the 250h’s competitors.
What Concerns Us
Sadly, nothing is perfect. The 2012 Lexus HS 250h does have a few flaws, including the fact that adding extras quickly knocks the price up. The steering isn’t particularly nimble, and the back seats don’t fold down at all, which is an odd thing to omit even for the compact luxury sedan segment.
The HS 250h was offered in two trim levels. The base model offered 17-inch wheels, heated outside mirrors, power seats, a 6-disc audio system, dual climate control and more.
The Premium trim level knocked those offerings up by a bit, including 18-inch wheels, automatic wipers, adaptive cruise control and more.
Both models use the same motor/engine/transmission combination – a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine mated to two electric motors with a combined 187 hp (147 from the gas engine) and 138 lb-ft of torque. Fuel economy was decent, at 35/34 mpg.
There have been a couple of recalls issued for the 2012 Lexus HS series in general. One is in regards to excess fuel consumption on the 250h, while another was for a seat cover replacement that might interfere with airbag deployment. The car was also recalled due to an issue with debris in the HV battery air ducts, and a fault with the SRS system. The car’s smart key system was also the subject of a recall, and a service bulletin was announced for overly high battery voltage.
Drivers reported very few complaints, although the lack of folding rear seats ranks chief among them.