Toyota will in 2012 release a new model of its energy-efficientPrius equipped with an electric plug-in option. The new feature willallow drivers to jet around town for 13 miles solely on battery powerbefore the gasoline engine kicks in.
In an effort to gauge consumer reaction and preview how the Plug-inPrius performs in the real world, Toyota will this summer provide asneak peak to a number of lucky individual across the country. As reported by SignOnSanDiego, a total of 150 new vehicles will belent to cities, companies and universities in several cities across thecountry. Among them is San Diego.
The car is not designed for highway driving, as it barely surpasses62 mph. The goal, rather, is to eliminate the use of gasoline on short,city trips. Charged via the electricity grid, the Plug-in Prius could in the future be fueled in part by solar energy.
Toyota will be charging a premium for the plug-in feature, but thecost is still undetermined. The new Prius is one of two energy-efficient cars that Toyota will release come 2012. The other, yet to be named,will, when fully charged, be able to travel 50 miles before burninggasoline.
Toyota is set to manufacture 20,000 to 30,000 plug-in cars during the first year of production.