2012 Toyota Prius c Motor Trader Car News

14 Июн 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи 2012 Toyota Prius c Motor Trader Car News отключены
Toyota Prius c Electric Cars

2012 Toyota Prius c

Posted on February 21, 2012 at 12:00 am

[Click here to read our QuickView driving impressions of the Prius c]

Last year, Honda’s Insight was the cheapest hybrid at RM99,812 and not surprisingly, it was the best-selling hybrid model in the country. The low price was, of course, due to the government allowing hybrids (and electric vehicles) to be sold at duty-free prices to encourage Malaysians to use more environment-friendly cars.

This year, the cheapest hybrid is the new Toyota Prius c, a smaller brother to the Prius which created the hybrid segment in 1997. It’s not surprising that the Prius c is cheaper than the Insight since that is also the case in Japan and as both models are sold duty-free, the same applies here. However, this did not seem like it was going to be the case as a month ago when UMW Toyota Motor’s gave an estimated price on its website as RM103,900.

Even with that price indication, some 600 orders have been received, showing that Malaysians are keen on buying hybrid models which are proven to reduce motoring costs.

But at the official launch, the surprise was that the model is RM97,000 with insurance and the reason for the drop to below that of the Insight was explained by T. Hibi, Deputy Chairman of UMW Toyota Motor: “Our earlier price was only an indication. We continued to try to offer the Prius c at a lower price and finally, we decided that we should show our appreciation to the Malaysian government for the duty-free incentive and we have absorbed some more of the cost to make it more affordable.”

Having lowered the price, UMW Toyota Motor has to sell a lot more units and its target for 2012 is 2,500 units, 1,000 units more than the target for the bigger Prius which has also been improved for the new year. To date, the company has sold 2,707 units of the Prius since its introduction in Malaysia in 2009.

From what we have heard, the Prius c is in great demand in Japan (where it is called the ‘Aqua’) and in the short time since it was launched at the start of December 2011, 120,000 orders have been received 10 times more than the number which Toyota planned to make each month. But UMW Toyota Motor’s President, Ismet Suki, gave assurance that orders have been made in advance for the allocation to Malaysia so there will be enough supply. However, there is still a waiting period of at least 2 to 3 months if you order now.

That the Prius c can be launched in Malaysia as originally scheduled demonstrates how quickly Toyota was able to restore its production processes after the earthquake and tsunami almost a year ago. In fact, the factory where the Prius c is made is located in the region which was hit by the earthquake and though the factory was not damaged, production had to stop for a while. Panasonic, which makes the hybrid batteries, had also set up a new plant in the same area and was also affected.

“When the earthquake hit the region and disrupted factory production, we were greatly concerned about the launch schedule,” revealed Mr. Hibi. “But Toyota’s efforts to restore production were so successful that we did not have to change our plans and can launch the new model today.”

So what’s the Prius c? It’s another member of the Prius family (the plural form of Prius is officially ‘ Prii ’) which is described as the ‘Next Decade Compact Hybrid’. The ‘c’ doesn’t have a single meaning and Toyota suggests that it stands for ‘Compact’, ‘Clean’, ‘Clever’ and even ‘City’. It’s clearly a smaller model than the Prius at 3995 mm long, it is 485 mm shorter but it is almost as wide at 1695 mm.

To match its compact proportions, the overall height is also lower at 1455 mm.

Aerodynamic efficiency is a very high priority for hybrid vehicles as the more easily the car can slip through the air, the less energy that is needed to overcome wind resistance. Extensive aerodynamic features were engineered into the Prius c to help bring the Cd down to 0.28 without turning it into a ‘bubble on wheels’.

Toyota Prius c Electric Cars

The measures to reduce aerodynamic drag include a reduced frontal surface area by having a reduced ride height, and ‘pagoda’ roof, triangular silhouette, integral rear spoiler, flush underbody with special features to manage airflow and reduce turbulence, and aero-stabilizing fins in various areas.

With the Prius c, Toyota’s designers also introduce ‘aerocorners’ on the body to smoothen airflow as it moves over different surfaces. ‘Under priority’ is another design feature which emphasizes the trapezoidal radiator grille design for optimum aerodynamic efficiency and cooling.

At the rear, the designers sought to express stability and active character through the shape and style of the tail lamps. Each lighting unit is large and highly visible with an arrowhead profile (like the Prius) that adds to the dynamic looks.

To reflect the more youthful character of the car and to appeal to younger buyers, there are bright colour choices offered, eg orange and red. The nice blue shade, which is available in Japan, does not seem to be included in the choices though.

The hatchback body structure makes extensive use of lightweight, high-strength steel to help reduce vehicle mass and improve fuel economy, without sacrificing the ability to absorb and disperse impact energies during an accident. The high level of torsional rigidity afforded by the body structure also makes it possible for the engineers to optimize suspension tuning for ride and handling.

Inside, there are some elements of the bigger brother evident, the most obvious being the steering wheel. The slim dashboard is also unique in appearance with most of the switchgear in the middle area and operating information shown on a display in a recess at the base of the windscreen. Drawing on the long experience of hybrid vehicle development, Toyota’s interior designers have provided a highly legible panel that provides comprehensive information about the car’s operation without causing ‘information overload’.

The visual distance and relationship of the display to the driver has also been extensive researched for the optimum position and clarity.

Most of the information is shown on a 3.5-inch full-colour TFT (Thin Film Transistor) display which has various screens, including an energy monitor to show energy flows in real-time and an ECO Score which allows the driver to keep track of fuel efficiency over a certain period. Fuel consumption records are also shown in a bar graph so the driver can see how driving style and traffic conditions affect fuel economy, and adjust his or her driving style accordingly.

Interesting articles

Other articles of the category "Toyota":

Our partners
Follow us
Contact us
Our contacts



About this site

For all questions about advertising, please contact listed on the site.

Catalog ALL Electric Cars and hybrid/ News and Information about Electric Car and Electric Vehicle Technologies, batteries for vehicle catalog with specifications, pictures, ratings, reviews and discusssions about Electric and Hybrid cars - Green energy