PHOTO CAPTION: 2010 Toyota Prius is third generation of popular hybrid sedan.

Prototype Plug-in Prius Shows 65 MPG Average

New 2010 Prius achieves 50 mpg fuel efficiency without plug-in capacity.

Published: 04-Feb-2009

Major carmakers are rushing to develop a new generation of plug-in hybrid vehicles including industry giants Toyota and GM, which hope to have the technology ready for sale by the end of the decade. GM appears to have the lead at the moment, forming a partnership with LG Chem to develop and manufacture long life lithium-ion batteries for its upcoming Chevrolet Volt.

Toyota, meanwhile, has been relatively secretive about its plug-in hybrid advancement but has now revealed some details about its progress. Initial trials of plug-in hybrid Prius that were started last year have shown that the vehicles can average 65mpg (3.6L/100km) in fuel-economy over a mixed cycle of both city and highway driving. By contrast, the new 2010 Prius achieves 50mpg (4.7L/100km) in fuel-economy over the same cycle.

"That is real-world driving," Toyota’s national alternative-fuel vehicle manager in the U.S., Bill Reinert, revealed to Automotive News. "I ask my guys to drive them as you drive your normal Prius."


Earth Policy Institute's Lester Brown offers another way to fuel the cars of the future that doesn't require a switch to natural gas.

Despite Toyota's disapproval of the $500 deposit on future plug-in Prius, one dealer plans to continue accepting them.

Chrysler circulating plug-in hybrid prototypes to dealers more advanced than earlier models. Pictured is the Chrysler EcoVoyager, in one of a trio of electric-drive concept vehicles it debuted at the 2009 Detroit Auto Show.


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