Toyota working on Honda CR-Z rival: MR2 to return as Prius based coupe

Honda is really scaring the pants off of Toyota executives with their new 2010 Honda Insight Hybrid and their ambitious target of selling 400,000 hybrids by 2012. However, Toyota is not about to give up any time soon. It was recently reported that Toyota is working on a cheaper hybrid that it will aim at the new Honda Insight.

The folks at AutoExpress are now reporting that Toyota is also hard at work on the comeback of the MR2. The UK publication reports that the MR2 will return as a performance-hybrid that will rival Honda’s upcoming CR-Z hybrid coupe.

The Toyota MR2 will leave behind its roadster heritage for a compact coupe with a rear-wheel-drive chassis. It will feature a paddle-shift gearbox and a Toyota Prius powertrain with design slightly influenced by the FT-HS concept.

Toyota’s executive vice president Masatami Takimoto told AutoExpress that the company is working on a small hybrid sports car based on the MR2 that will carry a Prius hybrid set-up with “greater responsiveness.”

Speculation has it that the car could do 0 to 60 mph in 7 seconds while returning 60 mpg (50 mpg in U.S. terms). Stay tuned for more details.

Source: AutoExpress