Toyota considering a Prius-badged family

According to Jim Lentz, president of Toyota Sales in the U.S., a Prius family of hybrid vehicles we’ve been hearing could very well be on the way.

Lentz says that Toyota’s way of marketing its “Hybrid Synergy Drive” technology as a kind of brand hasn’t worked out so well with the Japanese automaker. Toyota is now looking into other options and lending the ‘Prius’ badge to all future hybrid models is currently the top choice.

“Try as we might to ingrain Hybrid Synergy Drive with consumers, what really stuck was Prius,” Lentz said in an interview. “So rather than spend millions more driving Hybrid Synergy Drive on Highlander or Camry, I think the consumer is telling us they like the idea of Prius.”

Lentz says he sees a future Prius-badged family of products that includes the current five-door hatchback along with a two-door coupe, a wagon and a commuter car.

There is no firm date on when the Prius family will arrive, but the next-generation five-door hatchback is due to hit the market in 2010.


Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

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