2015 Toyota Prius V gets updated looks and content

2015 Toyota Prius V gets updated looks and content

November 20, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Filed under: LA Auto Show , Hybrid , Wagon , Toyota , Design/Style , Technology The Toyota Prius V is the most utilitarian member of the Prii family with a big jump in cargo space over the rest but maintaining the great fuel economy. For the 2015 model year, the company is giving the wagon an update with a big shift in front end styling and upgraded taillights to go with the revised look. Inside, customers also get a little new technology, as well. The biggest change up front is the reshaped headlights and new bumper that look almost identical to the recent restyling of the Prius + in Europe . Though, the latest parts might be a little polarizing and almost make the wagon look like it has gills at each corner. The top level Prius V Five trim also adds integrated foglights to the design and headlights with LEDs for the high and low beams. Toyota is offering three additional colors too: Attitude Black Metallic, Absolutely Red and Toasted Walnut Pearl. Inside, drivers can get a new, eight-way adjustable power driver’s seat on some models, and there’s now a 4.2-inch TFT screen situated between the gauges on the Three trim level and higher to display information like fuel economy, navigation instructions, climate control settings and more. The upper versions also get Toyota’s latest Entune infotainment system with a 6.1-inch high-res touchscreen with navigation. Finally, the Advanced Technology Package on the Five trim now includes Lane Departure Alert and Automatic High Beams.

2015 Toyota Prius C is still colorful, still gets 53 mpg

2015 Toyota Prius C is still colorful, still gets 53 mpg

November 20, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Filed under: LA Auto Show , Budget , Hybrid , Hatchback , Toyota Few vehicles can match the affordable fuel economy of the $19,000, 53-mile-per-gallon Toyota Prius C , and that fact isn’t likely to change for 2015, as the Japanese company has issued a moderate refresh of its sub-compact hybrid. As mid-cycle refreshes go, this is a pretty standard affair, with a larger grille and tweaked LED headlights at the front of the Prius C, and more expressive taillights at the back. Toyota made some minor changes in the cabin, updating materials throughout, but not fiddling too much with the overall level of equipment. Aside from those modest changes, this is the same fuel-efficient five-door, retaining its 1.5-liter, 73-horsepower, 82-pound-foot four-cylinder, while an electric motor tosses in an extra 26 ponies, for a total system output of 99 horsepower. Along with the 53-mpg highway rating, the C will return 46 mpg in the city. Take a look below for the full press release from Toyota, and then be sure to check out the full gallery of live images, straight from the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show. Continue reading 2015 Toyota Prius C is still colorful, still gets 53 mpg 2015 Toyota Prius C is still colorful, still gets 53 mpg originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 19 Nov 2014 18:40:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink

Aging Prius, dropping gas prices putting hurt on hybrid, EV sales

Aging Prius, dropping gas prices putting hurt on hybrid, EV sales

October 25, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Filed under: Car Buying , Hybrid , Toyota , Electric “As Prius represents by far the biggest chunk of the hybrid marketplace, where Prius goes, the segment goes,” – Ed Kim, Autopacific Fuel prices in the US have been tumbling for the last several weeks, with the average price of a gallon of gas at $3.120 as of October 20, according to the US Energy Information Administration. That price reflects a serious recent drop from $3.299 on October 6. Reports have even suggested that those low numbers might not change for a little while , perhaps as long as years. While drivers certainly love paying less at the pump, the change may be hurting the market for more fuel-efficient models, including the Toyota Prius . According to a report from National Public Radio, sales of hybrids, plug-ins and EVs are down around 5 percent for the year , but trucks and SUVs have seen a 17 and 20 percent improvement, respectively. Autoblog Green’s By the Numbers reports indicate similar figures of around a 5.4 percent drop so far in 2014. In fact, as of September, green-car sales have endured their fourth straight month of declines . That segment of the market fell 11 percent year-over-year in August and 9.6 percent in September. “As Prius represents by far the biggest chunk of the hybrid marketplace, where Prius goes, the segment goes,” Ed Kim, Vice President of Industry Analysis at AutoPacific tells Autoblog . That paints a bleak picture for hybrids, because at the moment, the Prius is doing pretty poorly.

Aging Prius, dropping gas prices putting hurt on hybrid, EV sales

Aging Prius, dropping gas prices putting hurt on hybrid, EV sales

October 25, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Filed under: Car Buying , Hybrid , Toyota , Electric “As Prius represents by far the biggest chunk of the hybrid marketplace, where Prius goes, the segment goes,” – Ed Kim, Autopacific Fuel prices in the US have been tumbling for the last several weeks, with the average price of a gallon of gas at $3.120 as of October 20, according to the US Energy Information Administration. That price reflects a serious recent drop from $3.299 on October 6. Reports have even suggested that those low numbers might not change for a little while , perhaps as long as years. While drivers certainly love paying less at the pump, the change may be hurting the market for more fuel-efficient models, including the Toyota Prius . According to a report from National Public Radio, sales of hybrids, plug-ins and EVs are down around 5 percent for the year , but trucks and SUVs have seen a 17 and 20 percent improvement, respectively. Autoblog Green’s By the Numbers reports indicate similar figures of around a 5.4 percent drop so far in 2014. In fact, as of September, green-car sales have endured their fourth straight month of declines . That segment of the market fell 11 percent year-over-year in August and 9.6 percent in September. “As Prius represents by far the biggest chunk of the hybrid marketplace, where Prius goes, the segment goes,” Ed Kim, Vice President of Industry Analysis at AutoPacific tells Autoblog . That paints a bleak picture for hybrids, because at the moment, the Prius is doing pretty poorly.

Toyota Prius + gets refresh in UK, is it coming here?

Toyota Prius + gets refresh in UK, is it coming here?

October 11, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Filed under: Hybrid , Minivan/Van , Toyota , UK , Design/Style Toyota has unveiled a mid-cycle refresh of its seven-passenger, UK-market Prius +, known here in the US as the five-passenger Prius V . The revised hybrid MPV now boasts looks inspired by Toyota’s more aggressive compact stylings as seen on its new Yaris and Aygo – particularly in the redone front fascia. The new LED headlights are the most obvious change, sporting a sharper style, while the vertical slats that bookend front fascia are much larger and deeper, and are now home to LED running lights. The lower grille is also newly enlarged and trimmed in black plastic. Changes out back are far less noticeable, with the biggest tweak being a new diffuser that’s been integrated into the rear bumper. The interior gets a light freshening, too, with fresh trimmings around the switchgear, as well as a new 4.2-inch TFT display in the center mounted instrument cluster. The latter includes a new “Eco Judge” function designed to help owners drive more efficiently through a point-based reward system. Cosmetics aside, Toyota has also tweaked the suspension damping, added additional sound deadening and adjusted the powertrain to comply with Euro6 emission standards. Now, what’s all this mean for our Toyota Prius V? Will we see a similar refresh to our US market vehicle?

Giving to the Giving

Giving to the Giving

July 24, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Los Angeles (July 23, 2014) – Little did Audrey Moscosa-Rodriguez know that her answer to the question, “where would you go in a new Toyota Prius and why?” would earn her a new hybrid to help her efforts.

Toyota Prius sets a different kind of Nürburgring lap record [w/video]

Toyota Prius sets a different kind of Nürburgring lap record [w/video]

July 16, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

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Has the auto industry hit peak hybrid?

Has the auto industry hit peak hybrid?

June 13, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Filed under: Car Buying , Hybrid , Technology , Ford , Toyota Hybrids are known for their great fuel economy and low emissions, but it looks like given current market conditions, only about three percent of new car consumers are willing to pay the premium for them. A new study from IHS/Polk finds that the hybrid market share among overall US auto sales are falling , despite more models with the technology on sale than ever before. The study examined new car registrations in March from 2009 through 2014. In that time, the auto industry grew from 24 to 47 hybrid models available to consumers, but market share for the powertrain remained almost stagnant in that time. As of 2009, hybrids held 2.4 percent of the market; it fell slightly to 2.3 percent in 2010 and grew to 3.3 percent in 2013. However, 2014 showed a drop back to 3 percent. Overall hybrid sales have been growing since 2010 , but they just aren’t keeping up with the total auto market. According to IHS/Polk, this isn’t what you would expect to see. Usually, each new model in the market brings along with it a boost in sales. The growth in hybrid models 2009 to 2014 should have shown a larger increase in share for the segment.

Toyota working on cars that hover above the roadway

Toyota working on cars that hover above the roadway

June 12, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Filed under: Technology , Toyota Toyota is one of the largest automakers in the world, but it’s not content simply building and selling conventional cars – it’s been at the forefront of numerous advancements in ground transportation. It is widely credited with advancing the cause of hybrid propulsion, and alongside Audi and Google , is among the first automakers seriously testing self-driving cars . We could go on, but the news here is that Toyota is reportedly developing vehicles that hover above the road surface instead of rolling along it. The news comes from Hiroyoshi Yoshiki, one of Toyota’s tech gurus, who revealed at Bloomberg’s Next Big Thing summer in San Francisco that the company is working on hovering cars – ones that travel just above the road surface, but don’t actually fly in three-dimension space. According to The Verge , a spin-off of our own sister-site Engadget , Yoshiki refused to elaborate on what the project entails and how far along it is. He was speaking along acting NHTSA chief David Friedman, who lauded such advancements as a “great taste of innovations to come,” but stressed the significance of more concrete improvements to conventional automobiles – like inter-car communications to keep vehicles from colliding on the highway – as more relevant to today’s industry. Toyota working on cars that hover above the roadway originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 11 Jun 2014 18:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink

New Toyota semiconductors could increase hybrid fuel efficiency by 10%

New Toyota semiconductors could increase hybrid fuel efficiency by 10%

May 21, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Filed under: Hybrid , Technology , Toyota , Electric Toyota may have an ace up its sleeve in the fuel economy wars, as it’s developed a new type of semiconductor that will allegedly help the company’s hybrids net a ten-percent improvement in fuel economy. The tech is still in development, although Toyota is already reporting five-percent gains during testing, six years before it plans to implement the new semiconductor in production vehicles, meaning the ten-percent improvement doesn’t seem like an untenable goal. That is, until you hear from Kimimori Hamada, the project general manager of Toyota’s electronics division. “We are aiming for great improvement in fuel economy and miniaturization,” Hamada told Automotive News . “This is a very challenging target.” The new semiconductors are made from wafers of silicon carbide, rather than just silicon. The compound is far more efficient, losing just a tenth of the energy that’s lost from a normal silicon semiconductor. That not only makes the semiconductor more efficient, but it allows Toyota to use a power control unit that’s 80 percent smaller. While the initial results are promising, silicon carbide is considerably more expensive than silicon, and once acquired, it’s more difficult to work with. “There are still enormous technical barriers,” Hamada said. New Toyota semiconductors could increase hybrid fuel efficiency by 10% originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 21 May 2014 10:15:00 EST.

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