Toyota Readies Fourth Generation Prius, Will Reportedly Achieve 60 MPG
November 9, 2012 7:47 AM
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Toyota said that a new redesigned Prius wouldn't launch for more than a year
Toyota said it is considering making a significant change to the design of its wedge-shaped
According to the automaker, it hasn't chosen a new design for the Prius yet, but it is trying to determine whether to "evolve it," or "really evolve it." It is currently reviewing clay-model prototypes for the new Prius design.
"There's an undercurrent among most people that they're ready for a new Prius look," said Chris Hostetter, Toyota's vice president for strategic planning in the U.S. "Maybe our architecture has been a little bit similar for the last two generations."
The Prius, which was first launched in Japan in 1997 and the U.S. in 2000, had an exterior design that was altered from Toyota's Yaris sedan.
A second generation Prius was released in 2003, where it received the raked hood and windshield. From 2003 to 2004, Prius sales increased dramatically from 43,162 to 125,742.
The third-generation Prius pushed fuel efficiency (and sales) even further, while the Prius c was introduced with fuel economy ratings of
50 mpg combined
Back in May of this year, the Prius family was named the
third best-selling vehicle line
in the world.
Toyota said that a new redesigned Prius wouldn't launch for more than a year.
Jonny Lieberman, senior features editor at
, recently spoke with his sources at Toyota and
shared a bit of secret info about the next Prius
. Lieberman hinted that the next Prius will have a fuel economy rating of 60 mpg. This shouldn't be too hard to achieve assuming a lighter vehicle weight, more powerful electric motor, and a switch from NiMH to lithium-ion batteries.
The Detroit News
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