Slick Sandy Bridge-powered ThinkPads are on the way

We already swooned over Lenovo's Brazos-powered ThinkPad X120e, but that wasn't the only exciting new laptop in the company's CES showcase. Lenovo was also displaying the E220S and E420S, two Sandy Bridge-powered systems with a more avant-garde design—for ThinkPads, that is.

The E220S is probably the most interesting one, because it has a 12.5" display (no, that's not a typo) and a very compact form factor. Both it and the 14" E420S are otherwise pretty similar. They feature magnesium palm rests with a rubber finish, and Lenovo expects to sell them for around $849 a piece when they become available in March or April. The E420S will nonetheless offer a little something extra for power users: optional Radeon HD 6000M-series discrete graphics with 2GB of dedicated memory.

Taking a peek in the E220S's System control panel revealed a 1.2GHz processor clock speed, so in all likelihood, Lenovo will be outfitting it with one of the least power-hungry mobile Sandy Bridge variants. (That said, Intel has only announced ultra-low-voltage Sandy Bridge chips with base speeds as low as 1.4GHz. Strange.) The Lenovo representative we spoke to didn't seem too sure about battery life, but he quoted a tentative run time of around five hours for the E220S.

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