2010 Toyota Plug-in Prius prototype

Back in September of 2010, Toyota's head of product development, Takeshi Uchiyamada, announced that come 2012, the Japanese automaker will try to take hold of the plug-in hybrid segment by offering the least-expensive, most-fuel efficient PHEVs in the world. Uchiyamada was speaking of none other than the automaker's plug-in Prius and admitted that Toyota's aim is to price it, "so close to the current version that customers really have to hesitate and think about it."

Well, the Japanese Nikkei (sub. req.) newspaper now reports that by 2014, all Prius hybrid models will come standard with plug-in capabilities and boast the ability to travel up 37 miles per liter of fuel (including electric-only mileage). From what we've been told, the all-electric range is around 12-14 miles, so this would translate to around 103 miles on that first gallon. Furthermore, the Nikkei claims that Toyota will price these plug-in hybrids in line with current Prius models. The Japanese automaker will supposedly focus on reducing the costs of batteries and other hybrid components so that it can offer the plug-in Prius at a price point that's identical to its non-plug-in counterpart. Yes, please. Hat tip to David!

*UPDATE: Not true, says Toyota.



Photos by Sebastian Blanco / Copyright ©2010 AOL

[Source: Nikkei – sub. req. via Green Car Congress]