The same vehicle that pioneered the hybrid category just disrupted the status quo again. Making a grand entrance for the first time ever is the all-new, 4th-generation Toyota Prius!
The 4th-generation Prius has been upgraded inside and out to deliver the complete package – emotional styling, smarter technology and impressive fuel economy, in a vehicle that’s more fun to drive than ever.
If you notice, the Prius’ exterior has been completely re-designed. From the side, it is longer and sleeker with the overall outline evoking an athletic shape. Inspired by a runner in the starting blocks, the sporty design conveys a feeling of forward motion.
The hood is lower and the distinctive roof peak has been moved forward. Bold character lines run along the side from the front fenders – one just above the sill that sweeps up towards the rear fender, while the upper crease morphs into the rear spoiler, which has been lowered.
The use of new standard LED headlamps minimizes the Prius’ front fascia and, at the same time, provides an arresting lighting display which helps define the vehicle’s character. The unique and striking rear combination lamps express the distinctive lines of the Prius from the rear spoiler to the trailing edges of the sides. There will be 7 exterior colours to choose from which includes an all-new Toyota hue called, “Hypersonic Red.”
The Prius’ new, premium interior adopts advanced technology complemented by features that are functional, fun and have high visual impact. The wrap-around dash design, form-hugging seats, ease of controls and improved visibility put the driver in complete control.
Once inside, drivers will feel immediately comfortable and impressed by styling cues that are unique in the industry. The wide instrument panel, seamlessly designed to be both functional and beautiful, gives a sense of comfort and spaciousness. Available premium white ornamentation in the lower sections of the cabin is reminiscent of fine bone china.
To greatly improve core vehicle performance and enhance product appeal, Toyota is implementing the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA), an innovative, integrated, development program for powertrain components and vehicle platforms.
As the first global product of this activity, the new Prius has received an entirely new Toyota platform. This has resulted in improved handling, safety and heightened driving enjoyment. Nearly every aspect of the new Prius has been improved in surprising and significant ways.
For instance, the new Prius features a chassis that is 60% more rigid, while the powertrain unit’s lower placement and low center of gravity has increased the vehicle’s stability and comfort.
Almost every internal component of the Prius engine is new or substantially revised. A comprehensive program of size and weight reductions for major hybrid components was achieved while maintaining overall performance. As a result, the Prius has achieved over 40% thermal efficiency and a huge boost in fuel economy, contributing significantly to overall driver enjoyment and fewer visits to the fueling station.
Unfortunately, Toyota isn’t giving us any specifications of the powertrain or fuel economy of the new Prius. However, Toyota did mention that an even more exciting Eco version will be unveiled sometime in the near future and will achieve an even greater improvement than this new Toyota Prius.
The new Prius is 60 mm longer, 15 mm wider and 20 mm lower than the model it replaces, providing a much more planted on-road presence while also delivering more occupant and cargo room.
A class-challenging low center of gravity and completely new and far more responsive front and rear suspension package provides a significantly improved driving experience. The height of the Prius’ front badge is exactly the same as that of Toyota’s 86 sports car.
The new front suspension and rear double wishbone suspension gives the new Prius a greater connection to the road, providing greater control and feedback in all driving conditions.
Improvements to chassis rigidity mean that the Prius is noticeably more responsive in corners. Whether going up a winding mountain road or urban terrain, the car’s handling is taken to an all-new level while maintaining excellent occupant comfort.
Active safety systems have also received a significant update where all models will feature the Toyota Safety Sense package, which includes (depending on grade and market) Pre-Collision System, Lane Departure Alert, Automatic High Beam and Dynamic Radar Cruise Control.
The new Prius will go on sale in Japan at the end of 2015, and is subsequently scheduled for launches around the world.