Soon, the new Toyota Prius will be released as the 2016 model in the line, and even though official information on the new car is pretty scarce, we’ve been getting some leaked pictures showing it in somewhat good detail. Of course, Toyota have been putting some effort into concealing the vehicle, so the pictures may not tell that much – but it’s still pretty good to see that the model is getting close to completion.
Green cars have been one of the major trends of modern times, and the market is practically going crazy about economic hybrid vehicles, and the all-electric idea is gaining some prominence as well. There are various good offers on all sides, including the highly popular Tesla Model S – soon to be followed by the Model X – and the Chevy Volt. This makes it even more important for Toyota to make this release good, as there will surely be a lot of attention on it once it’s out on the market.
The car’s exterior design has been altered a little, giving it a longer shape, and a slightly wider frame. It’s still nothing remarkable in terms of appearance, reports say, but then again, this is not something the line has been known for in general. Buyers looking for a car designed around looks should search elsewhere, but what the Prius lacks in appearance it should definitely make up for with its performance.
It’s worth noting that the previous renderings that were leaked about the car might not have been completely accurate, as they showed a car with a different front and headlights, and a slightly different rear design. Some have been comparing the appearance of the new car to that of the Mirai, without the front intakes which have been somewhat controversial among aesthetics lovers in the auto community.
We don’t know the exact details on the powertrain inside the 2016 Prius, but there are a few good rumors floating around. It’s also very likely that the plug-in version of the car will feature a lithium-ion battery pack as a standard feature, while the base model will come with nickel-metal-hydride batteries. There might be an option for a Li-ion replacement as well, but that has not been confirmed.
The cells will be used to power a motor which combines with a four-cylinder engine, and the car uses a front wheel drive configuration. There won’t be any different transmission options, only CVT, and there is supposed to be a total output of 150 horsepower, compared to the previous 134. Reports also claim that Toyota are trying to get a 60 mpg figure in EPA city fuel economy testing for their regular model, and at the same time they’re likely going to increase the all-electric range on the plug-in model to at least 20 miles.
November 2015 is the most likely month for the car’s official arrival, as Toyota are expected to present it at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show. As we said above, official details on the model haven’t been released yet, and that includes the pricing levels, but some are predicting that the company will try to aim at the same price as before, roughly $25,000.
That would be good for their position on the market, and of course it would be good for consumers as well. The more diverse and attractive choices they have in the hybrid market, the sooner we’re going to switch to this type of technology for good and start making real progress.