By on April 30, 2012

With a rising yen and forecasted sales of 200,000 units, Toyota is looking to kick Prius production into high gear on North American shores.

The challenge for Toyota appears to be sourcing all the components needed to build hybrid drivetrains in the United States. According to Automotive News

“Toyota already is scouting suppliers capable of delivering inverters, electric motors and batteries from the United States in anticipation of the move, said Koei Saga, senior managing officer in charge of drivetrain r&d at Toyota.”

Currently, most of those parts have to come from Japan or South Korea. Initially, they may have to be imported to the future North American Prius plant, but the goal is for a local supply base. Toyota currently builds the Camry Hybrid stateside, but with imported components. Aside from cost factors, a big advantage of a local parts base is for the sake of “resiliency” – any natural disasters in Japan would not affect inventories like the 2011 tsunami/earthquakes did.

Also of note is the North American emphasis on lithium-ion equipped versions of the Prius. While only the plug-in uses a lithium-ion battery, (and base versions will continue to use a Nickel-metal unit), this would suggest that Stateside production would focus on more advanced versions of the Prius, or more plug-in versions. Presumably, the Prius c and “base” versions of the standard car would continue with the less advanced battery.

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13 Comments on “Next-Gen Toyota Prius Targeted For Stateside Production In 2015...”

  • avatar

    That makes sense. Now get them to move here completely. Japan is getting so full of old people you might as well start calling it “Sarasota Florida”.

  • avatar

    As long they offer at least some kind of token made-in-Japan-for-realz weaboomobile, I’m ok with that. They were building “Toyotas” in America for decades and it worked quite well, except for the rust issues.

  • avatar

    Life keeps getting better,and you don’t have to worry about ants.

  • avatar

    i dont know why everyone is please for the new prius. Its sh*t. Its got good MPG and sure its eco but who cares. We want horse power not plug power :)

    • 0 avatar

      LOL! I know several old codgers in my area that currently drive a Prius and they will trade for this new one whenever it gets here like they have been doing all along when a new Prius comes out.

      That doesn’t mean that they don’t have other cars as well, with horsepower, like a pickup truck and an SUV/CUV for ‘mama’.

      I never cared any hybrid or EV, but the Prius has been a consistent best seller for the past decade and is well on its way to selling its second million.

      And, I might add, a lot faster than Volt will get to its second million, or even its first million.

      • 0 avatar

        I’m pretty much the guy highdesertcat is talking about, though at 49 I consider myself only slightly codgerish. My daily driver is an ’05 Prius and my wife drives a loaded Odyssey, but when the snow gets deep or I need to go to my monthly gun club meeting, I drive a 4×4 Ram with the 8 liter V10.

        The Prius is the perfect car for what most of us end up doing 90% of the time – droning back and forth from work to school to the store to home. I get a solid 50mpg and it’s dead nuts reliable. If I lived in a place where I was driving winding country roads, I’d still be driving my Passat turbo 5-speed, but that car was wasted on my commute. The Prius isn’t very exciting, but it’s a fine appliance for my needs.

  • avatar

    So when does the Volt start production in Japan?

  • avatar

    I know the future is made up of these dreadful things, but does it have to get here so soon?

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    IIRC, Toyota had plans to build the 3rd-gen Prius in a new Mississippi factory before the economy kerploded in 2008.

  • avatar

    I have the Chevy Cruise Eco so I am so green I make Kermit jealous. Now that ordinary gas engines are approaching 40 mpg in the same size car as the Prius, why bother with the complexity of the Hybrid.? My car is fun to drive, a lot of fun. The engine likes to rev, redline is 6500rpm and the turbo gives the 1.4L amazing power., plus nothing on the car says Turbo so I surprise a lot of people looking to blow off what they think is a little econocar. The 6 speed manual is fun to use, and the car is surprisingly quiet. Not a buzzbomb.

    • 0 avatar

      The Prius has less moving parts than your “Cruise”, so why bother with the complexity of a turbo and all those gears?

    • 0 avatar

      9.8 sec (per Consumer Reports) to 60 is fast? That is a little over a half of a second faster than a Prius (per CR’s testing). Those 3 overdrive gears towing around a 3000lb compact, tall final drive, and low rolling resistance tires sound like an absolute riot.

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    “why bother with the complexity of the Hybrid.?”

    Some people demand more than the lowest common denominator.

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