Feeds

back to article Toyota preps plug-in Prius for mass production

Mass production of a plug-in Toyota Prius could start within two years, it’s been reported. Prius_PHEV_01 The first Toyota Prius PHEVs should appear in 2011 The first production Prius PHEV cars will appear in 2011, according to the Japanese newspaper Nikkei, with Toyota expecting to shift between 20,000 and 30,000 of the …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.
Bronze badge
Coat

what's the point?

18 miles on a full charge? Might as well ditch the battery and have a long extension cable for that kind of range.

0
0
Bronze badge

Extraordinarily Bad Value

So that's £14K for the ability to travel just 18 miles on battery power? That strikes me as incredibly bad value for money. That amount of money is sufficient to fuel one of these from the pumps for perhaps 160,000 miles, without taking into account the costs of electricity. That's not to mention the costs of replacing the Li-Ion battery which is going to give up the ghost long before you reach that mileage.

Or put it another way, the expected price of this plug-in hybrid would pay for my 1.6 Focus diesel from new and enough fuel to take it to 170,000 miles at the price I paid, current fuel costs and mileage I get.

One for only the richer of the green-tinged type (and the greeness of these things is always questionable qhilst electricity is largely fossil-fuel derviced and the extra resources taken in manufacturing and servicing these complex beasts is taken into account).

0
0
Grenade

the only good prius

is one thrown through the side of the griffin household

0
0
Anonymous Coward

@Whats the point

Well I live 4 miles away from work... its across a city centre takes 1+ hour on the bus (yes you could walk it quicker!) and 20mins in the car but driving is stop start all the way.... do you think I should a use a petrol car - like everyone else, a diesel - supposedly better MPG. but heavier and actually uses more due to stop start all the way. or an electric vehicle with enough range to get me there and back and the next day should I / or the missus leave the car unplugged. with a regenerative braking system to recover all that lost stop start energy??

and whats more when we do wish to drive a couple of hundred miles an engine would be useful!

Just friggen hurry up and make some damn cars at a reasonable price already!

0
0
FAIL

and that's optomistic!

to get the full 18 miles, you have to drive in such a way that herses will be qued up behind you angrily honking their horns, demanding that you get out the way.

I have nothing against electric drive systems per say, electric trains have much greater power to weight ratios, and the motors produce more torque by several factors over their deisel counterparts, so electric motor driven cars certainly have the potential.

It's just the damn power source! Maybe if we fitted all the roads with overhead powerlines, like we had with the old trolley buses?

0
0
Thumb Up

Range seems about right

18 miles should cover the vast majority of commuting and shopping trips for the vast majority of people. For those occasional trip outside this range, you've got the efficiency of that parallel hybrid setup with regenerative braking and CVT.

The Chevvy Volt needs a longer battery-only range as it's a series hybrid. These aren't as efficient when running the internal combustion engine.

Of course, neither are as efficient as a bicycle, which is how people should tackle <10 mile shopping and commuting trips.

Ian

0
0

Secure charging

Will the car be secure while charging? I don't want to have to open the bonnet to charge it, as that would mean I can only charge it in my garage.

Second question is when are car parks going to start providing power supplies to charge your car from (and will they charge a sensible amount for that electricity?).

Assuming all of that, then 18 miles would get me from home to the car park, and 18 more would get me back again. I'd only need to use fossil fuel if I did a longer journey, so I'd only go to the petrol station about twice a year instead of once a week. Saving: 50 times the price of a tank of petrol, or about £2,000 a year. Less the electricity, of course, and I have no idea how many kWh this will need.

0
0
Thumb Up

No charging points, buy a generator

Simply have a generator in the boot (with an exhaust vent) and charge as you park.

Still a low emission vehicle then eh, isnt it ?

0
0
Silver badge

Screw that

Tesla are talking about plugin vehicles with a 300 mile range. Why the complication of a hybrid petrol and electric engine if the electric runs for 18 lousy miles before requiring a recharge? I was kind of excited when I read the new Prius was a plug-in thinking the petrol bit had been ditched completely, but apparantly not so.

0
0

@what's the point?

The point is that range would allow me, and the majority of UK commuters, to do our daily commute on batteries alone whilst still having the engine option for longer trips.

0
0

zero missing ?

*18* miles ?!? You're kidding right ?

0
0
FAIL

18 miles?

I think I'll cycle. I'm sure those new lithium batteries are eco-friendly to manufacture too...

0
0
Thumb Down

blah blah blah

I suppose it's time for another round of "It'll never succeed because it only provides a solution to 80% of the people 80% of the time!" specious arguments.

I drive approximately 7 miles each direction to work. It'd work fine as an electric vehicle for me. It's a *hybrid*, BTW, meaning that if you go farther, or go faster the gasoline engine kicks in, so it'd be useful if you had to take a road-trip. (boring, but useful)

Not everybody drives 100+ miles per day anyway. Just because it doesn't suit your purposes, doesn't mean it's useless or pointless. The universe may seem to rotate around you as its axis, but it does not, actually.

0
0
FAIL

18 miles?

That wouldn't even get me too work? And once there would the 8 hours be enough to fully charge it again?

0
0
(Written by Reg staff)

Re. 18-mile range

Bear in mind this is a hybrid, so the range isn't as relevant as it is in a pure leccy like the Tesla. The PHEV Prius basically gets you a bigger battery than the regular Prius has, and gives you the opportunity to charge it before you set off.

It doesn't grind to a halt after 18 miles - that's just the distance it'll go before the petrol engine kicks in to drive the vehicle while the battery recharges. Having the leccy sub-system about raising the effective mpg rating rather than eliminating petrol altogether.

BTW, the conventional Prius' battery will take you 2-3 miles on a charge.

0
0
Alert

Motor atrophy

How much of a problem is it going to be for the people that almost never use the motor that they have an under-exercised mechanical device with stale gas?

0
0

Huh

>Of course, neither are as efficient as a bicycle, which is how people should tackle <10 mile

>shopping and commuting trips.

Provided you live in a utopian place of always nice weather, don't mind showering when you get to the office, and never have to bring home things bigger then a single grocery bag in the rain. Or snow. Or ice. If you want to plan your life around transport, deciding when an afternoon thunderstorm has popped up you'll work a couple hours late to avoid bicycling in it, that's fine.

But I suspect it doesn't describe most of the world.

>Not everybody drives 100+ miles per day anyway. Just because it doesn't suit your purposes,

>doesn't mean it's useless or pointless.

While that is true, you still need to explain the price penalty. The extra money paid for hybrids today simply do not make economic sense -- you will never gain a return on your investment. In that sense there is no moral or ethical difference between buying a SUV or a Prius -- both are bought, by the vast majority of their owners, to satisfy their own ego and self image and not was is economically justifiable.

I truly like the idea of plug in hybrids, but the prices have to come down dramatically. And that is true whether I'm working from my home office (as I did for the last three years with a carbon footprint about the size of a twelve year old ballerina) or times like this where I'm commuting 150 miles a day.

0
0
FAIL

More MPG is Easy!

MPG is based on weight. Remove the gas engine, the spare tire, the back seats, the fuel tank, the exhaust system, and I bet you would see a lot more MPG! Would save a lot on the cost as well. Think they'll make it an option? Nah.

0
0
FAIL

18 miles...

wow.

/sarcasm

Can't get to work and back on that.

Won't Toyota just admit that the petrol + leccy thing was a huge mistake and continues to be a monumental failure?

I guess not.

0
0
WTF?

@David Edwards

> Simply have a generator in the boot (with an exhaust vent) and charge as you park.

It's a hybrid! There's already a perfectly good petrol generator under the bonnet.

0
0
Anonymous Coward

Fail Comments...

Guys, thats 18 miles on battery then the petrol engine takes over. Not 18 miles on battery then it stops dead in the road.

I agree its still pretty bad, but its not that bad.

As for the relative costs....well yes, I would have to drive about 250,000 miles before the savings on petrol made it worth changing my car. On the other hand the prius is bigger and nicer than my car. Its hardly like for like.

0
0
Thumb Down

Wow, UP TO 18 miles!

Well, that would get me to work and back---barely. As long as I didn't use the A/C or heat, or probably the headlights, and made every traffic light. I understand that this just supplements the hybrid technology, but I still think I'll hold off buying one until:

-you can get at least 100 miles of electric-only driving.

-the price doesn't completely offset any gains you get.

@motor atrophy---I've wondered about this as well. Also, since most of an engine's wear occurs at startup, and in a hybrid you potentially start the motor dozens of times a day, I wonder how well these will hold up after 200,000 miles?

0
0
Happy

@sysgod

"MPG is based on weight. Remove the gas engine, the spare tire, the back seats, the fuel tank, the exhaust system, and I bet you would see a lot more MPG! "

or ditch the heavy battery and electric motor!

0
0
Unhappy

Battery Tech

The current Prius keeps its battery between 60% and 40% charged to avoid deep cycles of the power pack. This has extended the life of this very expensive component to the point it has not been an issue. So I'd have 2 concerns - Does it deep cycle to get that range and have they solved the problem of LiON batteries losing their capacity with time? Both would lead to replacement packs being needed - perhaps thats why they cost so much more cos u need to have a replacement pack each year from Toyota :-)

Until there is some new technology for car batteries I don't see PHEVs taking off.

0
0

v.s. the Volt?

Now the competition with the Chevy Volt will be interesting, since this looks like it could be a fair bit more expensive with less plug in range.

0
0
Bronze badge

@Fails: Hybrid doesn't mean All Electric

For those commenting about "only 18 miles' and about how slow it will be - you're missing the point: It is a fucking HYBRID! That means, when it has not got enough battery charge or it needs to go faster than electric power alone will allow, it uses the petrol engine, instead of or in addition to the electric motors. The plug in idea is simply to reduce the use of petrol, not dispense with it altogether. Whether or not this is environmentally a good thing depends how the electricity was generated. The price really needs to come down though.

0
0
Grenade

What an absolute bag of shite!

18 whole miles, eh? Is that with the heater running full tilt and the radio on listening for traffic reports while bunged up in congestion at eight in the morning?

But, hey, they painted doves down the side. Lets hope those same doves live within 18 miles of my house and I'm fully charged.

Anyone with half a brain in their head already knows that this philandering with cars that run on dead weasels etc. is just a sideshow so that pay-as-you-go tax infrastructure can be in place when hydrogen cars finally go mass-market. I might consider a leccy car which has longer legs than a petrol / diesel car if it has a similar TCO and doesn't look like it was designed by subscribers to whalesongmp3s.com. Until then they will continue to be filled under Irrelevant Hippie Cockbrisket and may continue to throw shite at the moon.

0
0

@FAIL

"Won't Toyota just admit that the petrol + leccy thing was a huge mistake and continues to be a monumental failure?"

Not while they can sell as many as they can build.....

Look at the prius etc. as the new Ferrari - a bit impractical, a bit "look at me" flash, lots of high-end tech that will filter down to us plebs eventually.

I investigated converting my MR2 to electric : it's all pretty straightforward, if you have $20k+ for batteries (down from $40k+ a year or two ago).

0
0
Alert

18 miles v Volt's 40

I can see Toyota changing the range or they will just hand GM a stick to beat them with "The Chevy Volt. Goes twice as far on a battery charge as a Toyota Prius". Marketing man's dream.

Amazed how many people seem to think the Prius PHEV range is 18 miles in total, its been around for decades and a plug-in version was obviously only going to increase the range on a fully charged set of batts before the engine cuts in as per any other Prius. Wake up lads.

0
0
Thumb Down

Don't trust it...

In the current Prius, they say it can get 65pmg but in reality the most you'll ever get with driving like a granny is more like 55mpg. Put your foot down or do more than 70 on suitable roads and that drops quite quickly.

Horrible cars, really horrible ....

0
0
FAIL

No sense of history

Any of you blokes carping about the bad value proposition familiar with the concept of "early adopters"? Do you recall what the first IBM PC/XT cost in Carter/Regan dollars? Go find an inflation calculator and tell me what that would be in today's dollars (after you pick your jaw up off the floor). New technology is always expensive until everyone is making it.

There is a statistically high probability that plug-in hybrids will be commonplace and unworthy of comment in less than ten years time.

Oh, yes... for all of you screaming "ONLY 18 MILES!!!" and suggesting putting a generator in the trunk, I consider this another damning indictment of the public (in the American vernacular) education system. Seems like we can either home-school 'em and leave them educated, but bereft of social skills or we can teach them all together in school so they're social animals that can't speak or read complete sentences...

0
0
This topic is closed for new posts.