Here is text and video of Toyota's new Prius models to be released in 2011 in Japan
It intrigues us that the oil companies are able to raise prices so drastically when demand is quiescent.
The more Prius models that are released the less transportation demand for oil and gas. We're finally going in the right direction and it's also finally here to stay as much as Aramco, Exxon, etc wish otherwise
Video of new Prius models at Detroit 2011 Auto Show
Here's text from CNBC Asia on the launch
Toyota has unveiled its new long-term business strategy - part of which includes a goal to sell a million gasoline-electric hybrid vehicles a year.To meet that target, the Japanese car giant is rolling out two models.
The last time gas prices spiked like this in 2008, US consumers veered towards the Prius. Back then Toyota monopolized the hybrid market and the brand was synonymous with cleaner technology.Fast forward 2.5 years — plenty of other hybrids, Nissan's Leaf is up front in mass-produced electric cars, and the good ol' fashioned internal combustion engine is pushing 40 miles per gallon.Partly why Toyota is eager to adopt two new members to the hybrid family.
Still nameless and priceless, before they go on sale in Japan at the end of April, they're a bit bigger all around than the original Prius. The seven-seater version will be the first time Toyota will use a lithium-ion instead of nickel metal hydride for the battery.
This is the first Prius with a lithium ion battery. That means the battery is half the weight, half the size so you get that third row of seat in the back. The question is, how much of a premium are customers going to be paying.No details on the mileage or price either, but instead Toyota is pushing the 50 percent larger luggage space and the two panes of sun roofs, which analysts say might tempt a younger buyer.
They also say, however, that Toyota needs to start manufacturing the Prius in the U.S. for the hybrid to trigger a much-needed rebound in profits.
Thanks for watching "Asia Market Daily". I'm Saijal Patel from CNBC.