Toyota Not Fully Charged About Plug-In Hybrids
While GM is trash talking about selling 60K plug-in Chevrolet Volts in their first year on the market (whenever that may be), Toyota is more circumspect about the technology's chances. The International Herald Tribune reports that the world's largest automaker (ToMoCo) wants to conduct more consumer testing and market assessment before offering a plug-in Prius. Toyota's U.S. manager for advanced vehicle technology admits "there's a lot of enthusiasm right now about plug-ins." But, Bill Reinert adds, "I'm a little cautious about how much of that ends up as real consumer behavior." In other words, will consumers walk the talk? Cost and convenience may be the critical factors. GM pegs the cost of their plug-in Volt– with a 40-mile electric-only range and mandatory extension cord fun– at around $30K. Toyota's gas-electric Prius currently sells in the low 20s– and experienced a major surge when the price was lowered. Do the math.
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