Toyota Prepares Plug-in Prius Models

TOKYO, Dec. 14 (UPI) — Japanese automaker Toyota Motor Corp. said it would be ready for a large scale release of a plug-in Prius vehicle by 2011.

In the world of alternative-fueled vehicles, the race is on between major companies. General Motors Corp. expects to sell the Chevrolet Volt plug-in at a rate of 60,000 per year by late 2010, The New York Times reported Monday.

Volkswagen, Ford, and Nissan have electric cars in various stages of development.

Toyota did not give a specific number, but said “several tens of thousands,” of plug-in Prius hybrids would be in showrooms in 2011.

A plug-in Prius will also be available for leasing this year, but the availability is expected to be sparse, while Toyota evaluates feedback from drivers.

The plug in Prius is rated at 134 miles per gallon and is expected to drive about 14.5 miles using a lithium-ion battery. When the battery wears down, power switches over to a hybrid gas and electric engine.

It is expected to cost half as much to drive for short trips than a regular Prius if the owner charges the vehicle at night, when electric rates are cheaper.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

Categorized | Cars, Transportation
One Response to “Toyota Prepares Plug-in Prius Models”
  1. Scott Simkover says:

    The Plug-in Prius option:
    I know that there are some on this site considering the Plug-in Prius option, and there are many ways to do it. I have tried to maximize both the creature comforts and the EV range in my approach.

    Base Car

    2009 Toyota Prius (package 6), 6800mi: Price before tax/reg – $23488.

    Leather seats, Navigation System, 6 disk changer, JBL Premium audio (9 speakers), integrated bluetooth phone, HID headlights…on and on. The car has a very tech feel to it.

    The people at will be doing an install of a 10KWh LiPO4 battery pack (40AH Thundersky) that will be installed under the back cargo floor. Battery management by this outfit: Price of the installed 10KHh system, including suspension upgrade, bumper plug is $11500, afer taxes it came to around $12475.

    In terms of performance I can expect 40 miles of all electric EV range for city driving (that would be at a max speed of 52mph) and around 75mpg fuel economy on the highway, in mixed mode, 100+ mile range.

    Driving the car home from the dealer on the highway (prob about 72mph ave), the performance screen was showing an average of about 55mpg, and that is stock, without the battery pack. I do believe it has regenerative braking.

    For me, this will work for now, and allow several years for a more optimized EV to find its way to market. The install does not void the Toyota warranty in any way. In fact I purchased an additional 4 years of factory warranty for $1000. For a bit under 40K after all is done, I wind up with a plug-in solution.

    Some sources of concern might be, no rebate, temperature stability of the pack unknown, current lack of a fast charger. Install scheduled in a few weeks, pics/review to follow.
    If you’re not living on the edge, you’re taking up too much room…


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