Blog: Dave LeggettNew Toyota Prius

Dave Leggett | 18 November 2003

I should be getting the chance to drive the new Toyota Prius next week. I drove the last one. That one was definitely generation one. After all the effort that had gone into the technical side, external styling obviously got left 'till last when there was no budget left. The new one looks a lot better and is described by Toyota  as being practical and simple to drive and live with. We shall see. I wonder if Leonardo di Caprio has replaced his family's old model Prius fleet of four with the new model yet? Prius has apparently proved highly popular among US-based celebs keen to display green credentials. 

Toyota’s says its new Hybrid Synergy Drive system delivers a nought to 62mph acceleration time of less than 11 seconds, yet achieves combined cycle fuel economy of 65.7mpg – a figure to 'rival the best B-segment diesels'. The big question for Europe is this: how many will say in response to that, okay, I'll take the B-seg diesel? Will making it bigger than the previous generation Prius actually grow sales? Will many D-seg buyers go for a Prius as main household transport?

Maybe that's missing the point and Toyota sees Prius in the longer term as a technology leader establishing Toyota as the alternative powertrain marque in the eyes of the consumer. The real game gets going post-2008 when fuel cell vehicles start hitting the market in a big way.


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