Last January Toyota announced the expansion of the Prius hybrid lineup
to include a larger “V” model, a plug-in hybrid, and a smaller, sportier compact, the Prius C. While Toyota has not officially released any info or images of the Prius C, a recently leaked brochure gives us a clearer picture of what to expect.Carscoop was sent this image, supposedly from a leaked Toyota brochure
, that not only reveals what the Prius C will look like but also what we should expect in terms of fuel economy. If this is indeed the production model, it will look remarkably like a smaller version of the current Prius sedan, including the headlights and taillights. Not surprising there, though I do hope a coupe model is in the works
, as I could see such a car being popular with those of us who don’t want to sacrifice style and performance for efficiency
Less Power, More MPG?
Even bigger though are the proposed powertrains for the Prius C. A 1.4 liter engine will provide just 74 horsepower and 82 ft-lbs of torque through a CVT automatic transmission. A seperate electric motor will provide an additional 61 horsepower and 125 ft-lbs of torque, for a combined power rating of around 100 horsepower. On the Japanese fuel economy cycle, this would translate into an 84 mpg rating…though keep in mind that on the same cycle, the standard Prius gets an 89 mpg rating
. Here in America on the EPA test cycle the Toyota Prius is only rated at 50 mpg. So expect fuel economy in the upper 40’s when the Prius C does eventually go on sale.
I’ve never hid my contempt for the Prius…but I think a smaller, sportier hybrid, done right, could appeal to a broader range of buyers. A coupe would be nicer, but if Toyota can keep the starting price under $20,000, they could have a winner on their hands.
How about you readers? What do you think of the next member of the Prius family?
Chris DeMorro is a writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs. You can read about his slow descent into madness at Sublime Burnout or follow his non-nonsensical ramblings on Twitter @harshcougar.