Next Prius could have all wheel drive image

Toyota’s Prius is already a piece of automotive history, and not just because it’s the world’s best selling hybrid vehicle. So, the next generation has some pretty high standards to achieve.

Not long ago we found out that the team in charge of the next generation decided to postpone the model’s production start from the first part of 2015 to December that year. That’s because Toyota is increasingly worried that it needs to fix any issue the model has before the official start of sales, as it affords no mistake with the brand’s flagship model.

Thanks to the delay, there are new details emerging from official sources – one of them being Koei Saga, the senior managing officer in charge of powertrain development. He said the fourth generation of the hybrid would be offered in two versions when it comes to the battery – a more affordable and older layout that utilizes a nickel-metal hydride pack – or a more efficient Lithium Ion setup.

“The batteries will be renewed. Everything will be revised. And I think we will come up with a fuel economy that will surprise everyone,” Saga said, declining to give specific numbers.

When asked about it, he also declined to dismiss the probability of having an optional all wheel drive powertrain, adding that Toyota’s new hybrid system should be smaller, lighter and more efficient – and also flexible enough to be used on many model configurations.

Via Automotive News Europe