Toyota Reveals Details About Plug-In Prius Concept (Lithium-Ion Batteries!)

toyota plug-in hybrid prius photo

Photo: Toyota
Electric Range is Only 12.4 Miles...
Toyota will be unveiling a plug-in hybrid Prius concept next week at the Frankfurt Motor show, which we wrote about here, but some new details have surfaced: The PHEV Prius will have lithium-ion batteries (finally!) and an electric range of 20 km (12.4 miles), with a top speed in electric mode of 100 kph (62 mph). CO2 emissions should be around 60g/km.
toyota plug-in hybrid prius photo

Click to see our 2010 Toyota Prius slideshow. Photo: Toyota
Better Adapted to Europe?
The range might seem small, but that depends where you are. Toyota's research shows that in the UK and France, more than 80% of car trips are less than 25 km (16 miles), and in the UK alone that's around 80% that are less than 10 km (6 miles). So over there, the plug-in Prius would spend most of its time in electrical mode, and will even be at an advantage to other plug-ins (like the GM Volt) because its battery pack will be smaller and weight less.

toyota plug-in hybrid prius photo

Click to see our 2010 Toyota Prius slideshow. Photo: Toyota
Fast Charging
About the battery, Toyota says: "it can be recharged much more quickly than the nickel-metal hydride type: the battery in the Prius Plug-in can be fully recharged in one-and-a-half hours from a 230v power supply." Pretty impressive. It's not rare to have a car parked for 1-2 hours during the day, even if we drive a lot.

Where Can I Get One?
So far Toyota has only announced a test programme in early 2010. 500 PHEVs are to be leased to people around the world to see how the plug-in hybrids perform in the real world. This should be split this way: 150 Europe, 150 US, and 200 Japan.

If that goes well, hopefully Toyota won't wait too long to produce more.

Via Toyota

Check out our 3rd Gen Toyota Prius slideshow!

More Plug-In Cars
Peugeot's iOn Electric Car, Based on Mitsubishi's i MiEV
Fisker Estimates Karma Fuel Economy at 67.2 MPG, CO2 Emissions at 83 g/km
BYD to Sell a Limited Number of E6 Electric Cars in the U.S. Starting in 2010

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