2011 Frankfurt Motor Show: 2012 Toyota Prius+ (Plus) is ready to take your family for a spin

Article by Christian Andrei, on September 14, 2011

Prius+, a seven-seat MPV that’s based on Toyota’s full hybrid Prius, will go on sale in Europe in the first half of next year but before that, its production car has debuted at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. European customers are in for a treat as the Prius+ is the first seven-seater car to have a full hybrid powertrain.

With this model, Hybrid Synergy Drive’s environmental credentials and advanced technology are exposed to its broadest customer base so far. Prius+ is a totally new vehicle and was designed from the ground up.

It’s apparent from its exterior design that it is an evolution instead of being just an elongated variant of the standard Prius. The name Prius+ implies that there is a considerable boost in space and passenger accommodation. Compared to a standard Prius, it is 155mm longer, 30mm wider, and 85mm higher.

Its wheelbase extends by 80mm, providing enough space to fit adults in all three rows of seats. The architecture of the all- new interior design includes a strong horizontal dashboard line that covers the centre console, centre cluster and instrumentation in one flowing form. Together with the concave door trim and a distinct centre space between console and cluster, a feeling of spaciousness is created. The seven-seat format consists of three, independent, split/folding second row seats and a third tier that’s 50:50 split/folding.

All the occupants have clear forward visibility since the seat height in each row has been raised by 45mm over the one in front. However, the head clearance and legroom in each row remains ample. There are seven passengers on board but Prius+ still offers 200 litres of cargo space. When the third seating row is stowed away, the cargo space increases to 505 litres.

Loading and unloading becomes easier due to its 1,105mm tailgate opening width, which is 95mm wider than that of the standard Prius. Its storage is more flexible as there is a large, 345mm storage tray located below the luggage deck.

Prius+ is available with the latest generation of Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive powertrain, which uses a 1.8-litre 98bhp Atkinson cycle petrol engine and a 60kW electric motor. Toyota asserts that its total system power is 134bhp, resulting to a 0-62mph acceleration time of 11.8 seconds and a top speed of 106mph. This is the first lithium-ion battery that’s featured in a non-plug-in Toyota full hybrid.

Press Release

Toyota Prius+

The Toyota Prius+ is a new vehicle, designed from the ground up. Its advanced, cutting-edge exterior design hallmarks it as an evolution of the original Prius.

Though still compactly sized to optimise its aerodynamic performance, the Prius+ provides, as its name suggests, a significant increase in space and passenger accommodation. It is 135 mm longer than a standard Prius, 30 mm wider, and 85 mm higher, with a wheelbase extended by 80 mm, making it possible to accommodate 7 people in three rows.

Instantly recognisable as the latest member of the Prius family through its characteristic, triangle silhouette, the new Prius+ combines Toyota's Under Priority frontal design language with painstaking airflow management to give the new 7-seat full hybrid uniquely clean, advanced and cutting-edge styling.

To gain the full benefit of its lightweight, high tensile steel and aluminium construction and its uniquely quiet Hybrid Synergy Drive® powertrain, the Toyota Prius+ exterior design focuses on maximising aerodynamic efficiency to improve fuel economy, handling stability and quietness.

The front of the new Prius+ features the latest representation of Toyota's trapezoidal, Under Priority design. Featuring chrome-plated horizontal trim, the upper grille opening has been kept as small as possible to maintain a smooth airflow over the upper body. In contrast, the lower grille has been enlarged to increase engine cooling efficiency.

The tops of the sharp-edged, halogen headlamp clusters feature an adaptation of the curved line detail first seen on the current generation Prius, reinforcing the new full hybrid's position within the Prius family line-up.

Housing LED Daytime Running Lights (DRLs), the flat, vertical surfaces of the bumper extremities not only reinforce the car's broad stance and driving stability, but also create 'aero-corners' which correct the airflow as it passes over the front wheels to minimise turbulence within the wheelarches.

In profile, the iconic, Prius family triangle silhouette is instantly recognisable. The Toyota Prius+ evolves this design DNA with a strong spindle shape created by the long, seamless flow of the bonnet, A-pillar and roofline, the clean sweep of full-length side glazing emphasised by blacked-out B- and C-pillars, and a rising crease in the lower bodywork which flows smoothly into the rear bumper.

Distinctive rear styling is highlighted by a practical, top hinged tailgate flanked by large combination lamp clusters with Synergy Blue ornamentation, which flow round the corners of the bodywork to enhance visibility. The rear combination lamps are spaced as widely as possible, not only maximising tailgate opening width but also reinforcing the vehicle's broad, stable rear stance.

The smooth convergence of airflow from the roof and sides of the bodywork is important to the aerodynamic efficiency of the new Prius+. The body itself tapers in plan form, and the flow of air away from the vehicle is smoothed by a roof spoiler optimised for length and angle, an 'air kick' shape built into the rear combination lamp clusters, and aero corners to the rear bumper.

In addition, front and rear spats fitted at the front of each wheel arch suppress airflow changes around the tyres, improving straight-line stability and steering performance.

In combination, these comprehensive aerodynamic measures award the new Prius+ a class leading drag coefficient of just Cd 0.28.

The presence of Hybrid Synergy Drive® is denoted by hybrid blue lamp ornamentation and Toyota badging, and the front wing 'Hybrid' badge. The new Prius+ is available in a range of seven exterior colours, including Toyota's unique White Pearl finish.

The 16" alloy wheels with aerodynamic wheel caps and the 17" aluminium alloys both feature tyres with a 5% lower rolling-resistance than those fitted to the standard Prius.

All-new Interior Design

The dynamic architecture of an all new interior design features a horizontal dashboard which encompasses the centre console, centre cluster and instrumentation in one flowing form. Combined with concave door trim and a well-defined centre space between console and cluster for connecting driver and front passenger, this creates an unprecedented sense of spaciousness.

The console flows into a dashboard-top mounted centrally position instrument binnacle, allowing for excellent visibility. Within the binnacle, the Hybrid System Indicator, speedometer and gear shift indicator are positioned close to the steering wheel, minimising driver eye movement from the road.

Instrumentation and switchgear within the centre console and centre cluster is clearly divided between driving operation controls and all other functions. All driving related switchgear is positioned adjacent to the steering wheel, and mounted within a metal-like surface finish.

The Toyota Touch multi information screen -incorporating audio, navigation and vehicle information systems- and the air conditioning controls are mounted within a high quality black background finish. The air conditioning system features a new, single dial controller, which allows for the adjustment of temperature, mode and fan speed through the simple, intuitive action of a single knob.

The new Toyota Prius+ interior is hallmarked throughout by contrasting finishes and soft touch materials, combining an advanced look and feel with operational practicality. A choice of two interior colour schemes -Aqua and Grey- may be combined with two grades of fabric upholstery, or 'Toyota E-Tex' - a highly durable synthetic material which has the texture of leather yet is 30% lighter and may be readily wiped clean.

Spacious, Three Tier, 7-Seat Packaging

At 2,780 mm, the new Prius+'s wheelbase is 80 mm longer than that of a standard Prius. The vehicle rear overhang is also 50 mm longer, ensuring that both passenger accommodation and loadspace are significantly more spacious that those of the standard Prius.

The new Toyota full hybrid's seven-seat format features three, independent, sliding/split/folding second row seats and a 50:50 split/folding third tier. The adoption of third row seating has been made possible by the installation of a highly compact, space-saving lithium-ion battery pack within the vehicle centre console between the front seats.

The couple distance between front and second row seats is 965 mm, 35 mm longer than Prius. And the couple distance between first and third row seats is a class-leading 1,635 mm. Both second and third tier knee room has been further improved by 25 mm through the use of a thin, curved front and second row seatback design.

Clear forward visibility for all occupants has been realized by raising the seating height of each row by 45 mm over that in front, while maintaining ample head clearance in every row.

Featuring a 25 mm increase in headroom, 27 mm more shoulder room and 18 mm more hip room than those of the standard Prius, the front seats incorporate 260 mm slide adjustment, 60 mm height adjustment, and are fully reclineable. A next generation frame design offers improved fit, feel and lateral hold. The driver's seat features power-adjustable lumbar support, and both front seats may be equipped with heaters.

With easy-to-use release levers mounted on the shoulders of all five rear seats, the new Prius+ offers genuine MPV levels of seating flexibility, combined with generous loadspace.

Offering occupants 75 mm greater headroom and 59 mm more shoulder room than Prius, the second tier features three seats which may be independently slid, folded and reclined. The outer seats have a sliding range of 180 mm, the centre seat 165 mm, allowing for a staggered seating plan to further increase adult shoulder room. All three seats may be folded fully flat to maximise the Toyota Prius+'s loadspace capacity and, for additional comfort, reclined by up to 35 degrees.

Folding independently to lie flat and level with the loadspace floor, the third row seats may also be reclined by up to 33 degrees.

The Toyota Prius+ provides 232 litres of cargo space, even with seven passengers on board. With the third seating row stowed, this figure rises to 784 litres, and with all second and third row seats folded flat, increases to a maximum 1,750 litres. A 1,105 mm wide and 730 mm high tailgate opening, 95 mm wider and 85 mm higher than that of the standard Prius, facilitates easy loading and unloading.

Storage flexibility is enhanced through a large 345 mm deep, 60 litre storage tray beneath the luggage deck. Shopping bags can easily be stored under the cargo deck and a suit case or baby stroller can be stored vertically by flipping up the deck board.

Fundamental to any multi-purpose family vehicle, the Prius+ is also comprehensively equipped with a variety of storage compartments catering for every seating tier.

The instrument panel incorporates an 8.5 litre glove box, a 4.5 litre passenger upper box and an accessory space on the driver's seat side. A side-opening 2 litre centre console box can accommodate up to 8 CDs, and may be operated from both front and second row seats. A mobile phone or USB-connected iPod can be stored in a dedicated centre console tray.

An A4 sized document or plastic bottle can be stored in both front and rear door pockets. And a map lamp-integrated accessory box and front seatback pockets are also available. A total of five cupholders are divided between all three seating tiers.

Optimised Full Hybrid Powertrain Featuring a new Lithium-ion Battery

The Toyota Prius+'s full hybrid system features a 1.8 litre VVT-i petrol engine, a powerful electric motor, a generator, a high performance lithium-ion battery, a power control unit, and a power split device.

The HSD system uses power from both the petrol engine and electric motor in tandem, as well as alone, maximising the efficiencies of both units to achieve the optimum balance of driving performance and fuel efficiency.

During deceleration and under braking, the electric motor acts as a high-output generator to effect regenerative braking. Normally wasted as heat, kinetic energy is recovered as electrical energy for storage in the high performance battery.

The system's seamless, E-CVT electric continuously variable transmission is controlled by Shift-by-Wire technology, using an electronic shift lever system.

As in the standard Prius, the Prius+ features three 'on-demand' drive modes to increase the capabilities of the full hybrid powertrain, including a full hybrid-unique, EV mode which allows for ultra-quiet running on electric motor power alone, resulting in zero fuel consumption and CO2, NOx and PM emissions.

Compact, High Output Lithium-ion Battery

The Toyota Prius+'s lithium-ion battery replaces nickel-metal hydride technology within a non-plug-in Toyota full hybrid for the first time. Located within the vehicle centre console between the front seats, the new battery is significantly lighter and more compact than that of the Prius.

A new cell structure design equips the lithium-ion battery with just 56 cells arranged in a vertically double stacked structure. This occupies significantly less volume than a Prius battery and, at 34 kg, is 8 kg lighter.

Despite these reductions in both size and weight, the Prius+ battery has the same rated voltage of 202 V, and has an identical maximum output.

1.8 Litre Atkinson Cycle Engine with Improved Exhaust Heat Recirculation

The lightweight, highly compact, 4-cylinder 1,798 cc Atkinson cycle petrol engine develops 98 DIN hp/73 kW at 5,200 rpm and 142 Nm of torque at 4,000 rpm. Combined with a cooled Exhaust Gas Recirculation system, the adoption of the Atkinson cycle offers significant gains in fuel efficiency and the reduction of emissions.

Because the intake valves close late in an Atkinson Cycle engine, compression is delayed. This creates a high expansion ratio for less compression, reducing intake and exhaust energy losses and converting combustion energy to engine power more effectively. As a result, the exhaust temperature is lower than that of conventional engines. Cooled Exhaust Gas Recirculation reintroduces cooled exhaust gas into the intake system, further reducing engine operating temperatures.

Together, these technologies minimise situations when the cooling effect of 'fuel enrichment' is necessary to protect the catalytic converter from overheating damage, thereby improving fuel economy and lowering emissions.

Improving cold weather fuel economy and cabin comfort, an engine heat management system combines an improved Exhaust Heat Recirculation system with an electric water pump. To reduce mechanical losses, an electric system replaces the conventional water pump drive belt. As a result the coolant flow rate can be controlled with greater precision, contributing to greater fuel efficiency.

Via a valve built into the exhaust assembly, the revised Exhaust Heat Recirculation system redirects exhaust gases to heat up the engine coolant at start up.

The new system is 33% lighter and 27% more efficient than that of the standard Prius engine. Specifically, a greater amount of heat can now pass from the exhaust to the coolant in the heat exchange system. This significantly reduces engine warm up times, particularly in cold weather. It allows a more rapid delivery of effective cabin heating, and improves hybrid system efficiency and fuel economy.

E-CVT Hybrid Transaxle

Housing the electric motor, generator, power split device and double-motor reduction mechanism in one lightweight, highly compact transmission casing directly comparable in size to that of a conventional gearbox, the transaxle lies at the heart of the Hybrid Synergy Drive® system.

The transaxle features a multi-function gear train integrating four types of gears including a double-motor reduction mechanism, making it lightweight and highly compact.

Compensating for the Prius+'s weight increase over the Prius, the final drive gear ratio has been lowered from 3.498 to 3.704, maintaining similar acceleration performance to that of the standard Prius.

60 kW Electric Motor/Generator

The high performance, permanent magnet, synchronous 60 kW electric motor/generator works in tandem with the petrol engine to boost acceleration and power the driven wheels alone when the Toyota Prius+ is operating in EV mode.

In order to maintain optimum efficiency despite a vehicle weight increase over Prius, the motor cooling system has been changed from air to liquid.

The motor generates instant power from 0 rpm and a maximum 207 Nm of torque. A maximum drive voltage of 650 V DC allows for a lower operating current and, hence, a reduction in heat, improving HSD system efficiency.

Power Control Unit

Similar in size to a 12 volt battery, the Hybrid Synergy Drive® power control unit consists of a voltage boost converter, an inverter and a DC/DC converter.

Controlled by the motor control ECU from the Power Management ECU, the Power Control Unit boosts the DC voltage level from the hybrid battery and converts it to AC electricity to drive the electric motor.

A conventional, non-hybrid vehicle is equipped with an alternator to charge the auxiliary battery. However, because an alternator cannot operate during engine cut-off driving mode, a full hybrid vehicle requires an alternative system. Hybrid Synergy Drive® incorporates a DC/DC converter to reduce the high voltage of the 202V system battery pack to 14V, supplying power to the accessory systems and charging the auxiliary battery.


The Prius+'s Hybrid Synergy Drive® powertrain combines the 99 DIN hp/73 kW output of the 1.8 litre petrol engine with the 60 kW output of the electric motor for a maximum system power output of 136 DIN hp. The Prius+ will accelerate seamlessly from 0-100 km/h in 11.3 seconds and has a top speed of 165 km/h.

Its environmental performance enhanced by the Toyota Prius+'s class-leading aerodynamic performance and low weight, the full hybrid drive system returns both class-leading fuel economy and CO2 emissions of 4.1 l/100 km and 96 g/km respectively.

Hybrid Synergy Drive® in Operation

Over the course of any journey, Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive® system operates in several different modes to maximise the Prius+'s overall efficiency.

At rest, the engine stops automatically to conserve fuel. Under operating conditions of low engine efficiency such as start up and low to mid-range speeds, the vehicle automatically runs in EV mode, on the electric motor alone, thus eradicating CO2 and NOx emissions.

Under normal driving conditions, power allocation is constantly adjusted between engine and electric motor to combine optimum performance with maximum fuel efficiency.

Via an Electronically Controlled Brake system (ECB), the electric motor acts as high-output generator during deceleration and under braking to effect regenerative braking, optimising energy management in the Hybrid Synergy Drive® system by recovering kinetic energy (normally wasted as heat under braking and deceleration) as electrical energy for storage in the high performance battery.

Battery power level is constantly managed via an engine driven generator to obviate any requirement to recharge the system from an external source.

Three 'On-Demand' Driving Modes - A Unique Eco Driving Experience

Supplementing the NORMAL drive mode of the new Prius+'s seamless, E-CVT electric continuously variable transmission, three alternative, 'on-demand' drive modes -EV, ECO and POWER- may be selected to further increase driving efficiency, performance and fuel economy.

These drive modes also incorporate comprehensive Eco driving support for those who wish to adopt more environmentally-friendly driving techniques.

From start with the NORMAL drive mode selected, the new Toyota Prius+ automatically operates in EV mode, driving under electric motor power alone to give instant power and an extraordinarily smooth, quiet ride with minimal NVH. This driving experience is unique to full hybrid technology and is not available to drivers of mild hybrid vehicles.

In NORMAL mode, the full hybrid system can operate on electric motor power alone at vehicle speeds up to 70 km/h, the petrol engine smoothly starting in higher speed ranges when its output is required.

The driver may also select EV mode manually. Though the petrol engine will still start if the system judges that its output is necessary, this switchable EV mode allows for significantly greater throttle inputs without engine start up. Hence, with vehicle range dictated by battery charge, the EV drive mode allows for urban driving with minimal noise and zero CO2, NOx and PM emissions as often as possible.

Its full hybrid powertrain helps Prius+ deliver significant levels of zero-emissions operation. The powertrain is optimised to operate in the most efficient mode, eliminating the need for the petrol engine as often as possible.

Toyota's own evaluations illustrate this potential. Data from several urban and extra urban trips show that the cumulative effect of the full hybrid powertrain leads to high proportions of zero-emissions operation, averaging up to 61% of journey time and 50% of total distance travelled.

Because the use of only light to medium throttle inputs keeps the petrol engine switched off throughout its operation, the EV drive mode contributes to a significant reduction in the new Prius+'s overall fuel consumption.

In ECO mode, throttle response to aggressive accelerator pedal inputs is reduced and air-conditioning control optimised for improved fuel economy. Depending on driving conditions, the ECO mode can help drivers achieve around a 10% reduction in fuel consumption.

A POWER mode also modifies the response of the Toyota Prius+ to throttle inputs, here boosting power to improve acceleration and enhance driving pleasure. The POWER mode provides a 25% higher throttle response to accelerator pedal input.

Complimenting these three on-demand drive modes, an Eco Drive Monitor helps drivers maximise the fuel efficiency of Toyota's full hybrid powertrain. Via the Toyota Touch multi-information screen, drivers may monitor the flow of energy within the Hybrid Synergy Drive® system for each driving mode. This helps them develop relaxed, fuel efficient driving techniques and maximise system efficiency.

A Flat Ride Combined with Smooth Handling

The Prius+'s bodyshell combines the high torsional rigidity fundamental to greater ride comfort with the light weight essential to maximising the efficiency of its Hybrid Synergy Drive® Powertrain.

The use of high tensile steel in components such as the B-pillar and rocker reinforcement, and the use of hot press materials in the roof reinforcement and front door impact beams offers significant weight savings. The use of an aluminium bonnet and front bumper reinforcement brings further weight reductions.

Particular attention has been paid to torsional rigidity, with reinforcement and bracing optimally positioned throughout the bodyshell.

Improving frontal body rigidity, the front suspension spring supports are coupled with a straight shaped cowl front. Lateral rigidity is improved by the adoption of a cross section which couples the left and right inner wheel housings. To the rear, the cross section member surrounding the back door opening incorporates circular reinforcement to optimise rigidity.

Driving stability is enhanced by the reinforcement of the front suspension tower through the coupling, with a brace, of the front spring support, cowl and front pillar.

In combination, these measures have increased torsional rigidity of the Prius+ bodyshell by 15% over that of a standard Prius. This enhanced body rigidity allows for the adoption of a softer spring setting to improve ride quality with no detriment to handling stability.

Revised Suspension

The Prius+ features the MacPherson strut front and torsion beam rear suspension systems of the standard Prius. However, both front and rear systems have been revised to combine greater agility with increased ride comfort.

To the front, a high caster angle of 6.5 degrees and an optimised stabiliser layout offer excellent stability and steering feel. The shock absorber features a specially designed piston valve with expanding oil paths. This allows for reduced damping force at high piston velocities, thereby reducing impact shock to maintain excellent handling.

The characteristics of the multipass upper support structure have also been optimised for the Toyota Prius+. The structure separates coil spring and shock absorber inputs into two pathways, allowing the spring input to be transmitted to the body without going through the upper support. This allows the rubber section to be designed specifically to manage shock absorber input, making it more efficient, and contributing to an ideal balance of handling and ride comfort.

In the case of the Prius+, a reduction of dynamic spring rate in the radial direction of the upper support has reduced road noise, while a 25% increase in the vertical damping coefficient helps realise an even more supple ride for greater comfort.

To the rear, the torsion beam suspension also benefits from an expanding oil path shock absorber. Shock absorber and coil spring mounting location shave been separated to widen the loadspace, and the shock absorber upper mounting has been set 42 mm lower than that of the Prius to further maximise luggage volume. Angled carrier bushings allow for neutral handling, with an understeer tendency to help enhance steering precision.

Improved Electric Power Steering (EPS)

The Prius+ shares the speed-sensitive Electric Power Steering (EPS) of the standard Prius, but it has been tailored to the specific handling characteristics of Toyota's new 7-seat full hybrid.

The system incorporates a high rigidity intermediate shaft design, and the steering gearbox is attached directly to the front suspension member for optimum system rigidity and steering response.

Specific to Prius+, a new control logic and a revised steering gear ratio of 18.1 further enhances the smooth, natural feel of the EPS system.

New Pitch and Bounce Control

The Prius+ introduces the world's first application of a new Pitch and Bounce Control system in a hybrid model. By automatically adjusting electric motor torque in direct response to road surface conditions, the system is able to reduce the pitching motion of the body, improving both ride and handling.

The system uses wheel speed sensor information to establish when the nose of the vehicle is either lifted or lowered. When the nose is lifted, the HSD system's ECU momentarily reduces motor torque to compensate. When the vehicle nose dips, the system adds torque to compensate in a similar manner.

Though system adjustment of electric motor torque is measured in extremely small quantities, it has a noticeable effect on ride and handling. Ride comfort is improved through the perception of a flatter ride due to reduced body movement. And steering feel around the centre line is improved through better ground holding of the tyres.

Enhanced NVH for Uniquely Quiet Driving

Reinforcing the extensive Noise Vibration and Harshness (NVH) suppression measures inherent in the Toyota Prius+'s aerodynamic styling and ultra-quiet Hybrid Synergy Drive® system, particular attention has been paid to noise and vibration reduction.

As with the standard Prius, road and engine noise have been rigorously suppressed through the comprehensive use of high-performance sound proofing materials throughout the engine and passenger compartments. Full thickness glazing and an acoustic windscreen design further reduce wind noise for improved quietness at cruising speeds.

The dashboard inner silencer has been redesigned to improve acoustic separation from the engine bay, and layers of thinsulate up to 23 mm thick have been applied to the back of the instrument panel and the undercovers.

In addition, reducing the spring rate of the upper front suspension mount rubber bushings and adopting newly developed tyres has reduced the amount of road noise, making the cabin even quieter.

As a result, the new Toyota full hybrid sets the highest standards in Noise, Vibration and Harshness (NVH) reduction, sound absorption and vibration damping. This ensures customers enjoy a cabin environment of unequalled calm and quietness at all vehicle speeds.

High Technology Equipment

As with every vehicle in the new Prius family, the Prius+ is a front-runner in the field of cutting-edge technological innovation.

Its comprehensive standard equipment specification includes highly fuel-efficient air conditioning, a Head-up Display system linked to steering-wheel mounted Touch Tracer control switches, a smart entry system, Hill Start Assist and Toyota Touch -the world's most affordable touch screen multimedia interface.

Just as in the Prius, customers are offered a range of advanced convenience and safety features to choose from. Options include a panoramic resin sunroof, LED headlamps, a Pre-Crash Safety system incorporating Adaptive Cruise Control, Intelligent Park Assist, Toyota Touch & Go Plus and Toyota Touch Pro navigation systems, and a JBL Matrix Premium Sound System featuring GreenEdge technology.

Highly Efficient, Single Dial Air Conditioning System

As in the Prius, the main air conditioning system components have been made as compact, lightweight and efficient as possible to minimise energy consumption and enhance fuel efficiency.

The system uses an electric inverter compressor, allowing the air conditioning to be activated without depending on the engine. A control system coupled with the Prius+'s Eco driving mode reduces the impact of air conditioner activation on fuel consumption.

The air conditioning system features a new, single dial controller, which allows for the adjustment of temperature, mode and fan speed through the simple intuitive action of a single knob.

Head-up Display with Touch Tracer Control

Fitted a standard to all Prius+ models, a head-up display projects key vehicle information on to the base of the windscreen, where the driver can read it without taking his or her eyes off the road ahead. The data presented include a Touch Tracer display, vehicle speed, turn-by-turn navigation instructions and adaptive cruise control system safety warnings.

The Touch Tracer switches are touch-sensitive controls mounted on the steering wheel that let the driver operate a number of on-board features without having to look down or take his hands off the wheel. The switches can be used to select and control the audio system, air conditioning, trip meter and Drive Monitor.

A first in the Toyota Prius+, a touch of the switch illuminates a control function map on the head-up display. A highlight moves in line with the driver's fingertip to the desired function, which can then be selected by pressing the switch. When, for instance, the driver has changed the air conditioning temperature setting, an answerback facility temporarily displays the new setting.

Panoramic Resin Sunroof

The Prius+ may be fitted with one of the world's largest panoramic sunroofs, which has an opening size about two and half times that of the standard Prius. The two-part sunroof is the first to be fabricated by Toyota in resin, and incorporates a hard surface coating to prevent deterioration by scratching or ultraviolet light.

The use of resin - combined with the elimination of a base structure and the adhesion of the resin panel directly to the body work itself - has reduced the weight of the sunroof by some 40% compared to that of a standard glass alternative. This not only improves fuel efficiency, but also, by helping to significantly lower the Prius+'s centre of gravity, enhances the vehicle's dynamic abilities.

Because resin is a more highly efficient thermal insulator than glass, the new panoramic sunroof offers an 84% improvement in heat insulation across its surface over a comparable glass roof. Further improving thermal efficiency, a door lock-linked automatic shade closing function helps prevent the build-up of cabin temperature during parking in hot weather.

Toyota Touch

Fitted as standard in the Prius+, Toyota Touch is a 6.1 inch, full colour, touch-screen interface which represents a new approach to affordable, on-board multimedia systems.

It incorporates AM/FM radio with enhanced FM reception through the first use of two tuners, a CD/MP3 player, Bluetooth mobile phone connectivity with a music streaming facility, and a USB port for the connection of portable music players, with the facility to display iPod album cover art. Both the hybrid drive system Energy Monitor and fuel consumption information can be displayed, and in addition, a rear view camera is fitted as standard .

Toyota Touch & Go Plus

Building on the Toyota Touch multimedia base unit, Toyota Touch & Go Plus equips the new Prius+ with an optional navigation system which includes all the most popular navigation functions, such as advanced traffic coverage, customisable speed limits, speed camera warnings, 3D city models and landmarks.

Using a compatible mobile phone, via Bluetooth, the system offers on-board connectivity to Google Local Search -the largest and most up-to-date search database in the world. Via Google Maps, destinations may be input remotely from home or office, and Points of Interest may be downloaded for entry as destinations.

Equipped with voice recognition, which includes a 'text-to-speech' message readout facility, Toyota Touch & Go Plus expands the functionality of the navigation and audio systems. It allows the driver to input a full destination, make a phone call, or to pick a specific song from a connected iPod with a single voice command.

The system will also display SMS text messages, emails and calendars depending on Bluetooth mobile phone compatibility.

Toyota Touch & Go Plus has been designed specifically to be both flexible and affordable. The system can be up-dated with the newest functions, as they become available. Available from launch, a Touch & Go Plus Apps function will provide fuel price, weather and parking space information. Thereafter, new App options will be rolled out, accessible via a web portal.

Toyota Touch Pro

The premium quality Toyota Touch Pro features a high-resolution 7.0 inch touch-screen interface with a 'home' screen, at-a-glance function displaying the most relevant air-conditioning, audio and navigation information.

It offers a comprehensive range of advanced features including voice recognition, automatic map zoom at intersections, 3D city model and landmark graphics, an on-line Points Of Interest search facility and a supplementary driver's navigational guidance head-up display.

The system also provides access to SMS messages and emails, and includes a 'text-to-speech' message readout facility. An HSD system Energy Monitor, fuel consumption information and a rear camera with dynamic guidance lines to help manoeuvring in confined spaces are fitted as standard.

Toyota Touch Pro also incorporates DAB/DAB+/DMB digital radio as standard, making it compatible with a new advanced Transport Protocol Export Group (TPEG) traffic information service. Based on a digital communication channel, TPEG represents a significant improvement over existing, RDS-TMC analogue systems because it can carry far more information.

Not only will its pin-point accuracy enable better navigation routing, but it will also supplement a basic traffic event and flow service with information on parking availability and fuel prices, adding additional information including speed limits and weather thereafter.

JBL GreenEdge Premium Sound System

The Toyota Prius+ introduces another Toyota first; a new, 8-speaker JBL Premium Sound System which features GreenEdge technology. GreenEdge technologies are engineered holistically to ensure that the speakers, amplifier, equalization and even component placement work together as a cohesive and efficient system, combining low electricity consumption with high sound quality.

At the heart of the system is a JBL GreenEdge amplifier, which is 66% smaller and lighter than comparable units. Because the amplifier's Tracking Power Technology measures audio input in real time, only the necessary electricity is provided to the amplification circuit. This greatly reduces heat loss, and effects a 50% reduction in current drawn from the vehicle's alternator.

High-efficiency JBL GreenEdge speakers generate twice the sound output levels of conventional speakers for the same power consumption. They feature custom designed acoustic lenses to spread a more powerful sound across an even wider frequency range.

Advanced Pre-Crash Safety System with Adaptive Cruise Control

An Advanced Pre-Crash Safety (PCS) system employs a millimetre wave radar sensor to scan the road ahead, recognising potentially dangerous objects and assisting the driver in reducing the chances of a collision.

If there is a high possibility of a collision, PCS will alert the driver and, when he begins to brake, provide braking assistance to supplement his own braking effort, simultaneously activating the seatbelt pre-tensioners. If the driver does not brake and a collision is inevitable, the system will automatically apply the brakes to reduce impact speed.

Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) works in tandem with the PCS system. ACC will automatically maintain a selected distance from the vehicle in front. Once the road ahead is clear, the Prius+ automatically returns to its original cruising speed.

Intelligent Park Assist

The new Toyota Prius+ may be equipped with an improved version of Intelligent Park Assist fitted to the standard Prius; an Easy Set function making it easier and significantly quicker to use.

The system uses a rear camera and ultrasonic sensors on the front side-bumper to identify viable reverse and parallel parking spaces. It will then automatically apply the correct sequence of steering angles for the parking manoeuvre into the target space; all the driver needs do is control the vehicle's speed.

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BRABUS is proud to announce the world premiere of its newest electric car, the Tesla Model S. Customized by the BRABUS ZERO EMISSION, the Tesla S has what is known...
by - September 18, 2015
Alfa Romeo recently showed the public its latest offering -- the Giulia Quadrifoglio. The unveiling was done at the start of the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show held from Sept. 17...
by - September 18, 2015
Opel unveiled to the global auto market its latest compact class station wagon – the all-new Astra Sports Tourer – at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show alongside the hatchback version...
by - September 18, 2015
On display at Hyundai Motor’s booth at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show was an array of connectivity features like TomTom LIVE services and the Android Auto technology. Likewise, visitors were...
by - September 18, 2015
Infiniti has unveiled to the world the newest member of its premium vehicle family at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show – the Infiniti Q30 compact. When launched, the Q30 is...
by - September 18, 2015