As you may know already, the first photo with the Toyota Prius MPV made quite a buzz yesterday but, as usual, it appears that the photo is just a rendering made by Japan’s Best Car magazine. Still, don’t be sad as the photo is actually very good and previews the upcoming car, which is not expected to carry a new design line.
The new Prius MPV is expected to make its debut in January, at the 2011 Detroit Auto Show and will hit the dealerships later next year.
Under the hood, we will find the same engine found on the Prius but also on the recently launched 2011 Lexus CT 200h, which means: a 1.8-liter VVT-i Atkinson cycle petrol engine delivering 98 hp at 5,200rpm and a maximum 142 Nm at 4,200rpm.
Furthermore, the car will carry a 60kW electric motor works, which means that the total output of the Hybrid Synergy Drive system is 134 hp.
According to Toyota, the Hybrid Synergy Drive systemcomprises a 1.8-litre petrol engine, a powerful electric motor, a generator, high performance battery, power control unit (PCU) and a power split device that uses a planetary gear set to combine and reallocate power from the engine, electric motor and generator according to operational requirements.
Toyota has taken the veil off the third-generation Toyota Prius hybrid vehicle at the 2009 North American International Auto show in Detroit. Since its launch over a decade ago in 1997, the Prius has been a benchmark for superb fuel economy and ultra-low emissions.
These qualities have been able to attract over a million customers around the world since then. Now its third generation version boasts of offering better mileage ratings at 50 mpg and better performance compared to that of its predecessor, as well as cutting-edge design features.
Moreover, the latest Toyota Prius, when compared to its forerunner, is more spacious, quieter and comes with more advance features – both standard and optional. These features include a moon roof with solar panels, Intelligent Parking Assist (IPA), steering wheel touch controls and four driving modes.
The name “Prius”, which means "to go before" in Latin, is very appropriate with the vehicle, as it was launched even before the public has considered environmental awareness as a mainstream social issue. Furthermore, the first-generation Toyota Prius was the first mass-produced hybrid in the world when it was introduced in 1997.
Right from the start, Toyota got directly involved in the development of the full-hybrid system, which has become an impetus behind advanced vehicle technology. The second-generation Toyota Prius was fortunate enough to feature Toyota‘s exclusive Hybrid Synergy Drive System in 2004.
Since then, the Japanese carmaker has sold over 670,000 Prius models in the United States. As for the third-generation Prius, Toyota engineers designed this latest iteration by combining refined version of existing systems and new technologies that could spell the future of vehicles.