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Toyota Rolls Out new Prius C Hybrid and Reveals NS4 Concept Plug-In

The next three years critical to win consumer support for battery power.

by on Jan.10, 2012

The next few years will be critical if the auto industry hopes to win popular support for new battery-based powertrain technology – rather than just having it mandated by government fiat, said Jim Lentz, Toyota’s top U.S. executive.

Lentz spoke during a well-attended news conference where the Japanese automaker outlined its electrification strategy while also rolling out a pair of new battery-based vehicles.

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The new Toyota Prius C is the latest member of a growing family of conventional gas-electric models sharing the nameplate of the world’s most popular hybrid.  But Lentz also revealed a more advanced plug-in hybrid, the Toyota NS4 Concept, that could reach market later in the decade.

The new subcompact Prius C will come to market about a year after Toyota launched a midsize spin-off dubbed the Prius V.  “If the larger Prius V stands for versatility, the Prius C stands for City,” the executive explained.

Toyota reveals the new NS4 Concept, a dedicated plug-in hybrid prototype.