The most popular hybrid car on the market is the Toyota Prius. The Prius has been around for a decade now and Toyota is getting set to launch a new and larger Prius for 2010 that offers an increased feature set and better fuel economy. One early road test showed that the 2010 Prius achieved 52.5 mpg.
Toyota is going to be pricing the third-generation 2010 Prius to better compete with Honda's new Insight hybrid. The Insight carries a base MSRP of $19,800, undercutting the 2009 Prius selling for a base MSRP of $22,000. However, the 2010 Prius I will carry an MSRP of $21,000 which helps to close the gap between the two hybrids. The 2010 Prius will be offered in five trim levels with the II, III, IV, and V coming in at $22,000, $23,000, $25,800, and $27,720 respectively.
Bob Carter, group vice president and general manager of the Toyota Division, expects the $22,000 Prius II to be the most popular model for consumers. “This model provides more than $2,000 added value, including the features most buyers want, at the same price as the current base model,” said Carter.
Standalone options will include an $1,800 Navigation Package, $3,600 Solar Roof Package (includes Navigation Package), and a $4,500 Advanced Technology Package (Navigation Package plus Radar Cruise Control, Pre-Collision System, Lane Keep Assist, and Intelligent Parking Assist).
The Insight is rated at 41mpg combined for city and highway driving, while the larger new Prius is rated at 50 mpg combined and is classified as a mid-size car offering more space than the Honda.
The economy is hurting sales of all vehicles, including the Prius and other hybrid automobiles. Through Q1 of 2009, the Prius sold 24,277 units, a 43% drop from the same quarter last year. The Insight hit the market in March and sold 569 since then.