Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Prius Seemingly Runs Out Of Answers

Toyota are set to launch their 3rd generation Prius later this year. Said to be similar in appearance as the previous two versions, Toyota engineers claim that the updated version will be 10% more fuel efficient.“This time, we have both engine and motor strength. A balance between performance and fuel efficiency,” says the Prius’ chief engineer, Akihiko Otsuka.

The new Prius will have three driving modes to give the driver options, from an “eco” to “EV” to “power” mode. The power mode focuses on performance, so the vehicle drives like a sporty sedan. The EV and eco mode will remind Prius fans of the first and second generation models.

The highly inefficient manufacturing and scrapping processes aside, the fact that the Japaneses engineers have increased the car's performance is commendable. How they achieved this, however, is far less impressive.

The company has increased the engine capacity from a 1,5 litre petrol-driven version to a 1,8 litre varietal.

After all the years of hype about the hybrid being the world's solution to greener motoring, the latest changes seem to going against everything the Prius has stood for since its inception. Surely sharp minds should be focusing on decreasing the engine capacity whilst achieving equal, if not improved, performance?

Via: CNN