Toyota Prius to Become More Eco-Friendly: Go All-Plug-In for 2014

Toyota is planning on electrifying its Prius hybrid further in the coming years. After the plug-in hybrid version goes on sale next year, the Japanese manufacturer plans to make the plug-in powertrain setup standard on the Prius in 2014, according to a Reuters report.

The PHEV Prius uses a lithium-ion battery pack, and will be able to cruise on electric-only power for approximately 13 miles before the 1.8-liter inline-four cylinder gas engine kicks in. Toyota claims that it can be fully charged in 90 minutes on a 240-volt plug, or three hours on a 120-volt outlet.

Toyota is not the only automaker investing in plug-in electric vehicles. According to CNET, Volkswagen is also working on a line of PHEVs. VW CEO Martin Wintekorn made the announcement at the Vienna Motor Symposium this week that the German carmaker will begin rolling out a range of PHEVs starting in 2013, although he declined to specify exactly which models would get the new powertrain setup. Our bet is that it will begin with the limited-run XL1, which begins production that year, to be the first plug-in hybrid from VW. The XL1 concept car we drove earlier this year was powered by a 48-hp turbodiesel, two-cylinder engine mated to a 27-hp electric motor.

Source: Reuters, CNET

The above is false according to a Toyota communications person. Source: editor Brad Berman reached out directly to Jana Hartline, environmental communications manager at Toyota. "The report is not accurate," Hartline said. "We spoke to our offices in Japan, and the story is not true. There is no formal plan to make all Priuses plug-in by 2014."

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