Rumored: Next Toyota Prius to Offer 60 MPG, All-Wheel Drive

Toyota has big plans for its next-generation Prius. In a recent Motor Trend report, a Toyota engineer suggested the possibility that the next Prius, which should arrive in spring of 2015, is likely to have 60 mpg combined, better styling, and an all-wheel-drive system. With the Toyota Prius already a serious seller in many states, we're putting it to you: What would it take for Toyota to get you to consider a Prius?

About the new Prius, the Toyota engineer told Motor Trend, "The rear wheels will be driven by a motor in what we call an e-4WD system. Targeting snowy areas, the rears will operate up to 37 mph. Above that speed, it becomes a purely front-wheel drive car."

New drivetrain technology like that could help expand the Toyota Prius' reach into other markets. Of course, a more eye-catching design would help too, and we've heard the new Prius will be sleeker and have a lower profile. To aid aerodynamic efficiency, the car will sport a lower hood height (by about 3.5 inches) and roof height than the model in dealerships today. Like that car, the new Prius will use NiMH batteries as well as lithium-ion units. "...Our engineers have found that NiMH batteries actually manage power delivery better when it comes to intensive consumption and recharging of electricity," the Toyota engineer said.

Currently, the original Toyota Prius -- not the compact Prius C or the more versatile Prius V -- is EPA-rated at 51/48 mpg city/highway. Partly thanks to a lighter-weight platform, the next Prius is said to drop about 150 pounds, and fuel economy may increase all the way to 60 mpg combined or above.

If you were considering a new midsize sedan or hybrid, what would make you most likely to consider a new Toyota Prius: a sleeker design, 60 mpg combined, or available all-wheel drive?

Source: Motor Trend
60 mpg and better styling are great. If they can make it luxury car quiet with great crash test scores, I will buy one
I owna 2008 Toyota Prius and my next vehicle will definatley be an AWD.  I'm considering either an Audi A5 or a Subaru Crosstrex but not that the Toyota Prius may come out with an AWD I'd definatley find out more information before deciding.  I love the idea that they will sleek out the car and depending on the new style will push me one way or another.I'm usually disappointed in Toyota's redesigns, take the Camry for instance.  I didn't mind the last look but the new redesign of the Camry is MORE BORING then the last.  I don't understand why "boring" styles have to come out of Toyota.  As for dependability Toyota is up there with Honda but as with style they are equals.  Even the new Accord styling is worse than the previous model.  I just get the point of redeisgning a car to look worse than what its replacing.  My styling goes  more toward the Corvetter, Acura and Audi for the most part.  Also, why is it so diffiuclt to buy a Stick shift with Navigation?  I love the new Acura ILX stick shift and was ready to check them out until I read you cannot get Navigation with the standard shift.  They lost me as a customer with that brilliant (NOT) idea.  I guess if you drive a stick shift you don't need to know how to get anywhere.

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