The new Toyota Prius is coming in 2015, and engineers have already got the first prototypes out on the road. We’re expecting a car with a slightly sleeker design and an all-new platform, allowing for fuel economy of 90mpg.
Called the ‘C’ platform, it should help the new Prius shed around 70kg. Power is expected to come from a modified version of the current 1.8-litre petrol engine, while the inverter and electric motor that it’s paired to will be downsized. Nevertheless, we’re expecting more than the 134bhp on offer in the current car.
This lighter, more efficient and probably more aerodynamic Prius will not only boast economy up from 72.4mpg to nearer 90mpg but also CO2 emissions down from 89g/km to more like 70g/km. That’ll mean exemption from road tax and London’s new stringent 75g/km Congestion Charge.
Engineers have a surprise in store with the new Prius, too, as we’ve been told it’ll be available with a part-time four-wheel-drive system. Targeted at snowy areas, the electric motor will drive the rear wheels at up to 37mph.
Underneath the heavy black plastic cladding is a shape that’s instantly recognizable as a Prius. We’ve been told to expect a lower bonnet and the A-pillars swept back slightly to help make it look a little more sporty. The Toyota NS4 concept (pictured) gives a good idea of how it’ll look.
Alongside the standard Prius, Toyota will also unveil the new Plug-in version but efficiency isn’t expected to improve much beyond the current car’s 134mpg because Toyota doesn’t see the need for the changes.