More Information on Toyota's 2010 Prius (Generation III)

2010 Toyota Prius Hybrid

We already had lots of information and photos of the all-new 3rd generation Toyota Prius hybrid car, but a few things were still missing. Toyota has released a whole bunch of info on the new Prius (except for pricing, unfortunately). It's not totally new, but a bit more detailed than what we had before. See the highlights below.All from Toyota's release:

Fuel Economy

The third-generation Prius extends its record of continuous improvement in fuel economy. The first-generation Prius, which was rated 41 EPA combined mpg, was replaced by the current model, which is EPA rated at 46 miles per gallon (mpg), combined city/highway. Using a combination of technologies, fuel efficiency was increased to an EPA estimated city/highway mpg rating of 50 in the city, 49 on the highway and a combined 50 mpg for the new Prius.


Click image to see 2010 Toyota Prius slideshow

Engine

A larger and more powerful 1.8-liter Atkinson-cycle, four-cylinder engine will produce 98 horsepower at 5,200 rpm in the new Prius. Together with its electric motor the hybrid system in the new Prius will generate a combined net horsepower of 134, an improvement of 24 horsepower over the previous generation. [...]

The 1.8-liter Prius engine is the first Toyota power plant that requires no belts under the hood for better fuel economy and less potential maintenance.

This larger engine actually reduces fuel consumption on the highway (where the electric motors are not much help) by running at lower RPMs than the previous model's 1.5-liter engine.

The new Prius will be certified as a Super Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (SULEV) and an Advanced Technology Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle (AT-PZEV) in California, as well as those states adopting California emission standards.


Click image to see 2010 Toyota Prius slideshow

'Hybrid Synergy Drive' Changes

The patented Hybrid Synergy Drive system in the 2010 Prius is 90 percent newly-developed with significant improvements over previous models.
  • The transaxle is lighter in weight and reduces torque losses by as much as 20 percent compared to the previous model.
  • The inverter, which converts direct current to alternating current, has a new direct cooling system to reduce size and weight.
  • Taken together, the inverter, motor and transaxle are smaller and 20 percent lighter.
  • A newly developed electronically controlled regenerative braking system has been adopted, with control logic optimized to enhance regeneration.

As previously stated, the new Prius also have 3 different driving modes on top of the normal one: EV, Power, and Eco (more details here).

Weight Reductions

Weight was saved through use of aluminum in the hood, rear hatch, front suspension axle and brake caliper and super high-tensile steel in the rocker inner, center pillar, and roof reinforcement.

For more photos, check out our 2010 Toyota Prius Slideshow

Via Toyota

Photos: Toyota

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