Toyota plans to debut two siblings to the current Prius hybrid in the United States by 2013 to further advance its gasoline-electric drivetrain technology to meet stricter emissions standards.
According to a dispatch in the Wall Street Journal from the recent National Dealer Conference in Las Vegas, one of the new hybrids will be smaller and one larger than the current Prius, the country’s largest-selling hybrid.
According to the newspaper, Toyota executives briefed dealers about the new vehicles, including size details.
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The pending smaller hybrid will comparable to the Toyota Yaris. The larger new hybrid will offer about 50 percent more interior space and storage than the Prius.
Toyota had already announced plans to launch a Yaris-sized hybrid in the United States, build a new small hybrid in France as well as a hybrid minivan.
Toyota also announced a milestone for the Prius at the same dealers’ meeting. Since its debut in 1997, Prius sales worldwide recently surpassed two million units. The Prius was first available in the U.S. in 1990.
Despite its success, Toyota is still attempting to regain customer loyalty after its recent recall of millions of vehicles for a variety of issues. Toyota sales in the U.S. decreased about 500,000 units in 2009 from its 2.2 million sales in 2008.
To help restore its customer loyalty, Toyota said it’s launching two new U.S. service plans that will come standard with Toyota and Scion brand vehicles.
Called Toyota Care and Scion Service Boost, the plans will immediately offer free factory scheduled maintenance and 24-hour roadside assistance for two years or 25,000 miles, whichever comes first.