Toyota Motor Corp. has announced that their next generation of hybrids (expected to launch in 2015) will be “more fun to drive,” and at least 10% more fuel efficient, noting that the new Prius will have a smaller motor, lighter chassis and a more energy-packed battery, The current Prius, which debuted in 2009, gets 50 miles a gallon in combined city and highway driving.
“The new Prius will also have a lower center of gravity and better driving dynamics,” stated Satoshi Ogiso, Toyota's global chief of product planning.
In addition, newer models of Lexus are expected to employ electric motors to increase acceleration while still staying ecologically friendly cars that still get good fuel economy.
While Toyota remains the top seller of hybrids offering 22 models to choose from worldwide, Akio Toyoda, the company’s CEO is looking to change their image from a “practical but dull brand to a more youthful and energetic one by adding "waku-doki," (Japanese for heart-pumping exhalation), features to its various lines.
Beginning next week, Toyota will begin selling a redesigned longer, wider Corolla that gets 42 highway mpg.