Toyota Teases Prius Minivan, Assures Dealers with New Product

It has been an especially tough year for Toyota but the Japanese automaker's big bosses have sought to assure its dealers in the United States by showing them new products.

There were no substantial photo or information leaks from the Las Vegas dealer conference but Automotive News reports the mood among attendees was generally "upbeat" despite a rough year focused on high-profile recalls. Over 1000 dealers flocked to the Mandalay Bay casino and hotel where Toyota chieftain Akio Toyoda assured his masses that new product was on the way and is on schedule for release over the next 18 months.

While dealers were the only ones to catch the latest glimpse of the upcoming Camry, FT-86, and Scion iQ, Toyota teased the upcoming Prius minivan yesterday through Facebook. Dubbed Alpha, it's hidden behind the current Prius in the teaser and sports longer overhangs and a higher rear roofline for added interior volume. The hybrid minivan will be the Prius lineup's first expansion effort ahead of the plug-in variant and a smaller and larger model due in 2013. According to AN, the larger Prius is designated the Prius-V and the even more compact version is called the Prius-C.

Sources: Automotive News (Subscription required), Toyota (via Facebook)

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