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Frankfurt show: Toyota lights up Prius – a bit

Light on: Toyota’s all-new Prius is somewhere behind this LED tail-light.

Toyota goes tail first into Frankfurt show reveal for fourth-generation Prius

Toyota logo2 Sep 2015

TOYOTA has provided the briefest official glimpse of its hybrid car future in a teaser shot for its all-new fourth-generation Prius, even though the internet is already sagging under the weight of undisguised spy photos of the Japanese company’s hybrid hero.

To make its debut at this month’s Frankfurt motor show ahead of its arrival in Australia in the first quarter of next year, the Prius is set to become the first production model to sit on the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) that will be not only lighter, stronger and cheaper than current platforms but also more versatile, ultimately providing the basis for up to half of all Toyota passenger cars.

The teaser photo shows the LED outline of the tail-light, which fits with the spy shots currently flying around the globe. The general shape also echoes the design of the Toyota Mirai hydrogen car, with its high rear deck.

The rest of the Prius design appears to be largely evolutionary, presumably so it does not alienate the 3.5 million current Prius owners, many of whom will pull out their wallets for an upgrade.

Toyota predicts a 15 per cent improvement on the outgoing car’s 3.9 litres per 100km fuel consumption, thanks to weight reductions, better aerodynamics and a fresh powertrain with a more fuel-efficient petrol engine, probably smaller rather than the current 1.8 litres.

Plug-in electrical charging is expected too, at least on one version.

Toyota has confirmed that the second iteration of Toyota’s C-HR hybrid crossover concept will also line up on the Frankfurt extravaganza.

The little sports SUV is almost certainly based on the same TNGA platform as the Prius and – in hybrid form at least – potentially armed with the same powertrain.

While the original two-door hatch shown at last year’s Paris motor show was somewhat fanciful, the new version can be expected to be much closer to production specification – a fact that will please Toyota Australia which is busting to add a small SUV contender to its line-up to take the fight up to the likes of the Mazda CX-3, Honda HR-V and Nissan Juke.

Toyota says it has now sold eight million hybrid cars since the first Prius went on sale in 1997. Back then, the company delivered a whopping 300 units to brave customers.

The most recent million Toyota and Lexus hybrid vehicles were sold in just 10 months.

So far, Australians have bought 77,500 Toyota and Lexus hybrid vehicles, with the locally made Camry Hybrid leading the way with 33,250 deliveries, followed by the Prius on 20,000.

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