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Auto blogWed, 04 Sep 2013 03:18:00 EST
Toyota has been known to make some exciting cars over the years, but its hybrids, well... let's just say a Prius appeals to a different kind of buyer. The TS030 Hybrid LMP1, on the other hand, now that's more our speed. And at the Frankfurt Motor Show next week, the Japanese industrial giant will bridge the gap with the concept car you see here. Previewed in bits and pieces along the way, Toyota has now revealed the full details and array of photos of its new Yaris Hybrid-R concept. And what the full picture reveals is a Prius C that's gone to the gym - or more appropriately, the track.
Powering this little pocket rocket is TMG's Global Racing Engine: a 1.6-liter inline-four with direct injection and a Garett turbocharger to drive 300 horsepower to the front wheels through a six-speed sequential gearbox. A pair of electric motors provide an extra 60 hp to each of the rear wheels for a combined output of 420 hp and through-the-road all-wheel drive. A third 60hp electric motor serves as traction control under acceleration and acts as a generator under braking to feed the TS030-derived super capacitor that boasts a higher power density and faster charge/discharge speed than a traditional battery. The system can provide a 40-horse boost for ten seconds in Road mode, or the full 120hp for five seconds in Track mode.
Though based on the three-door Yaris, there'd be no mistaking this for any ordinary econo-hatch. 18-inch TRD alloys with Michelin Pilot Sport Cup tires pack the wheel wells and a wider grille dominates the front fascia, while black and blue trim contrast sharply with the white bodywork. The rear pillar incorporates a quick-fill competition-spec fuel cap, LED daytime running lights illuminate the way and oversized brakes keep it all under control. The interior boasts Recaro racing buckets in black leather and blue Alcantara. There's more to digest in the press release below, but the bottom line is that if this is where Toyota is taking its hybrids, we want to climb into the driver's seat, and we're looking forward to seeing the concept in the flesh next week.
Mon, 22 Sep 2014 14:58:00 EST
"It may fly within Japan, but not globally," VW's Shoji said.
It's long been battered into our beleaguered auto writer brains that the ultimate future source of motivation for tomorrow's cars and trucks is not gasoline, diesel, electricity, natural gas, propane or solar power - it's the hydrogen fuel cell. It's been the Next Big Thing since the start of Next Big Things.
Toyota offers many flavors of its refreshed 2015 Camry, but those who choose to lower their operating cost-per-mile, squeeze 500-plus miles out of each tank of fuel or run a very efficient and reliable sedan in their taxi fleets will only be interested in one: the Camry Hybrid.
The exterior of the 2015 Camry Hybrid is nearly indistinguishable from its gasoline-only counterparts, with the same all-new sheetmetal and bumpers. The Hybrid is offered in LE, SE and XLE trims, meaning customers are offered base, sport or luxury configurations, respectively.
While Toyota expended quite a bit of effort resculpting and improving the 2015 Camry Hybrid, one area it didn't touch was the powertrain - it is virtually identical to last year's model (just like the gas version). Under the hood is a 2.5-liter Atkinson cycle four-cylinder gasoline engine (156 horsepower and 156 pound-feet of torque) and an electric tractive motor (141 horsepower and 199 pound-feet of torque). Combined, and running through Toyota's unique Hybrid Synergy Drive electronic continuously variable transmission, the two produce 200 horsepower (Toyota does not list a combined torque figure, and we've asked for clarification). A 1.6 kilowatt-hour nickel-metal-hydride battery, packaged behind the rear seats, provides energy storage.