The long-awaited replacement for the second-generation Prius has finally been presented today in Detroit. Totally redesigned, the new model is 22% more powerful while consuming 7% less fuel.
With a combined fuel economy average of just 3.8 L/100 km, the 2010 Prius is said to have received improvements in order to boost winter performance, an important aspect for Canadian customers.
Under the hood, a 1.8-litre Atkinson-cycle engine works hand in hand with the electric motor to produce a combined 134 horsepower. The increase in displacement actually improves fuel economy on the highway, thanks to the greater low-rpm torque. The car rides on 15-inch wheels, although 17-inchers are optional.
A longer list of equipment is found in the new Prius, including eight airbags, traction and stability-control systems, a moonroof with solar panels that are used by the climate control system and park assist. Four driving modes are available, including an EV-Drive mode that allows driving on battery power alone for a kilometer and a half, and a Power mode for a sportier driving feel.
The sleek new Prius features a coefficient of drag of only 0.25, which also helps achieve the low fuel consumption figures. The car's body style remains a practical 5-door hatchback.
Pricing for the 2010 Prius will be available before its spring launch.