2012 Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid Set to Electrify 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show

By Joel Arellano | August 17, 2011
News of the 2012 Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid has been circumnavigating the autosphere for some time now. The automaker announced this month the Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid will be making its first European public appearance at next month's Frankfurt Motor Show. Toyota continues to trickle information on the 2012 Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid. The automaker tells Automotive News that the hybrid hatchback drops the nickel-metal hydride batteries powering currently Prii (pronounced "pree-eye") and replaces them with more efficient lithium ion batteries. According to Toyota, carbon emission is nearly half of the current Prius hybrid. Fuel economy is an amazing 106 mpg, nearly double the current model's fuel economy. The Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid can also travel up to 12 miles on battery power alone before the gasoline engine kicks in. Toyota says the plug-in hybrid can be fully charged in 90 minutes on a 240-volt outlet, or three hours on a 120-volt outlet. The current Toyota Prius has an electric-only range of approximately one mile.
The 2012 Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid goes on sale next year in Arizona, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington. Toyota dealerships in the rest of the nation will receive the Prius plug-in hybrid in 2013. Note the plug-in hybrid is already on American soil: carshare program Zipcar has eight 2012 models while New York City is currently leasing five of them. In total, there are 180 Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid merrily buzzing around the States. Automotive.com's take: Last year, Toyota product development executive Takeshi Uchiyamada spoke about the automaker's future plans which included the 2012 Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid. He pointed out the Prius plug-in hybrid would be priced around $28,000, significantly lower than the Chevy Volt's $41,000 price tag before rebates. The Volt, though, has a greater electric-only range. Do you think the Prius plug-in hybrid will recharge Prii sales? Source: Automotive News (Subscription required)