New Prius V model shown officially

Posted by John on Tue 22-Feb-2011

Toyota US has revealed a new member of the Prius family to go into production late this year. Called the Prius V, it is a larger-bodied version of the Generation 3 Prius hatch…..but with a number of improvements apart from the increased carrying capacity.

While the drivetrain, engine and most mechanicals are identical to the Hatch, major changes have been made to the interior, and most exterior panels. Even the standard alloy wheels change from 15″ to 16″ diameter, with the 17″ size remaining an optional extra. The interior has had a major redesign, with the wide instrument panel of the hatch being replaced by a compact central design. The console bridge connecting the dashboard with the centre console has gone, with the mode control buttons now residing in the centre armrest, and the drive selector moving to a position in the centre dash closer to the steering wheel (which remains the same as before). The rear seat backrests now recline (so expect snoring from rear seat passengers), and the roof now features twin moonroofs with individual sliding covers. Externally, most panels have been modified, with the side bodyline being lowered. At the front, the foglights have been relocated to the lower grille, and sharper, flatter lines have been introduced. The new luggage space has been increased by 50%, with a minimal increase in overall body width and length. Fuel economy has suffered a small penalty due to the increased weight, but the Prius V still remains one of the most fuel-efficient vehicles on the market.

No indication yet if the Prius V will be brought in to Australia.

The Plug-in Prius continues in final consumer testing in most countries, and is expected to go on sale in selected areas in 2012. Another concept Hybrid member of the Prius family, the Prius C, a smaller, sporty car, will also go on sale in 2012.