Prius' Dirty Little Secrets

Toyota Prius on Manufacturing Emissions

Automotive News recently published their analysis of Toyota’s “sustainability report”, which looked at the Prius’ total environmental impact, “from factory to junkyard“.

As expected, the Prius compared favorably in terms of lifetime emissions of carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide and sulfur oxide (according to Toyota), but unexpectedly poorly when compared to a “class average” in the emissions of nonmethane hydrocarbons and particulate matter.  Additionally, when looking at the “materials manufacturing” phase of the car’s life cycle, the Prius was worse than the class average across all five emissions categories.

Toyota offered that these results are by-products of hybrid-only parts such as motors, inverters and nickel-metal hydride batteries which consume more energy and creates more emissions than non-hybrid parts during the manufacturing process.

Toyota reports that the results of this report will be used to redesign hybrid vehicles like the upcoming Lexus HS250h and JDM-only Wish MPV.

SOURCE:  Automotive News.

Jo Borrás

I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, out on two wheels, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.