Prius evolution

The Prius Plug-In Hybrid

Our world faces many challenges, from climate change and air quality to energy efficiency and safety. With the Prius PHV (the plug in version of our world famous Prius hybrid vehicle), we are reinforcing the line-up of our eco-car range with a vehicle that offers the best of EV driving for short distances with none of the range anxiety for long journeys.

There are multiple kinds of powertrains and energy sources that show outstanding environmental performance. However, the overall environmental assessment of a vehicle should consider the entire life cycle: from design and production through to driving and, finally, to the recycling phase.

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Reducing life cycle impact

Design

At Toyota we assess the environmental impact of the entire lifecycle of our vehicles. We derive specific courses of action and measures that will lead to ecological optimisation of our products and processes over the entire vehicle life cycle - Environmental Challenge #2. Toyota strives to develop each model in such a way that it delivers far better environmental performance than its predecessor. In order to measure the overall environmental impact, detailed life cycle assessments are carried out in accordance with ISO 14040/44

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Production

In line with our Environmental Challenge #3 (Plant Zero CO2 Emissions Challenge) the plant in Japan where the new Prius Plug-In hybrid vehicle is manufactured strives to reduce its environmental impact in a number of ways. By streamlining and simplifying certain processes, to the adoption of Karakuri Kaizen which is the elimination of unnecessary effort that required energy, through to the increased use of renewable energy. For example, the plant has developed new technology in the painting process and also installed a 2000kW photovoltaic system; these all go to reduce CO2 emissions during the production phase.

The plant has introduced more stringent water standards than the legal requirements, aiming to return water that is cleaner than that originally used to the local river system (Environmental Challenge #4). A biotope where indigenous species such as Japanese rice-fish, Crucian, and Dragonfly flourish, was created with an aim to increase interaction with the local community based around biodiversity conservation.

Finally, this manufacturing facility also has a company slogan that encourages tree planting! Environmental Challenge #6 that outlines our drive to establish a future society in harmony with nature has ensured the engagement of employees, families and local residents and has so far resulted in the planting of more than 50,000 trees.

Use

It often surprises people to learn that the “use” phase, due to the time frame and longevity of our vehicles, can have the most environmental impact during a vehicles complete life cycle. This is why taking steps to reduce these impacts during the driving phase is of the utmost importance - Environmental Challenge #1.

The Prius Plug-in makes use of a number of key environmental features that help to reduce this impact. Features such as extended range in electric mode to a streamlined profile that reduces driving resistance. Inside, the vehicle offers uprated eco-driving assistance so as to help you get the most kilometres out of your tank.
Please consult our eco-driving tips.

A major improvement over the last generation has been the upgraded solar roof.  This option gives a driver living in Paris for example 720km of fuel free range over an average year (based on European driving styles).

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“My dream car generates energy by itself”

Prius Plug-In Hybrid chef engineer, Koji Toyoshima

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Recycling

Resource efficiency plays an important role in Toyota’s organisation. The recoverability rate of the Prius Plug-In Hybrid exceeds 95%.

The Prius Plug-In Hybrid uses the latest version of our Lithium-ion industrial battery. In Europe, Toyota has set itself the challenging target of aiming to collect 100% of these industrial batteries. Realising that our raw materials are finite, Toyota is continuously progressing towards a resource-efficient economy, in line with our Environmental Challenge #5.

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