The new Prius Plug-in Hybrid, claiming fuel economy of 1,4 l/100 km and CO2 emissions of just 32 g/km made its world debut at the 2016 New York International Auto Show.
With a promise of significant increases to the range, power and maximum speed over previous generation due to a dual motor/generator drive system, which uses both the electric motor and the generator to produce drive torque, Toyota introduced its latest Prius Plug-in Hybrid.
The new Prius Plug-in Hybrid is 165 mm longer, 15 mm wider and some 20 mm lower than its predecessor. Toyota kept the PHEV's weight to a minimum through the extensive use of high-tensile steel in the bodyshell, aluminium for the bonnet, and the adoption of a CFRP (Carbon Fibre Reinforced Plastic) tailgate.
It comes with a 8.8 kWh lithium-ion battery pack that can be charged in just 2.3 hours using Mode 2 (Mennekes) 230 V outlet (chargin at home will take between 3 and 4 hours), but when the sun is out, the car also gets power from solar panels on the roof. Not to forget, there is also the world's first heat pump with gas injection air-conditioning system for lower energy consumption while heating up the cabin.
The hybrid system consists of a 1.8 litre, 4-cylinder, Atkinson cycle VVT-i petrol engine (shared with hybrid Prius) with a maximum 40% thermal efficiency, the highest level in the world for a mass-produced petrol engine (together wit Hyundai's 1.6 GDI engine in Ioniq). The impressive aerodynamic drag factor of 0.24 is, according to Toyota, among the lowest for production sedans.
During urban and suburban driving, Prius Plug-in Hybrid will automatically rely on its all-electric drive capability, despite not running in EV mode at the time. It will have an average fuel consumption figure of only 1.4 l/100 km (which is said to be the best plug-in hybrid mpg rating at the moment) and generate CO2 emissions of just 32 g/km. It is able to drive at up to 135 km/h in all-electric mode, offering an EV range of over 50 km.
The Prius plug-in Hybrid will be available in Europe towards the end of the year.