Gas prices are low, hybrids have lost their luster, and competition is fierce for alternative-fuel cars. So now is a great time to introduce a hybrid, right?
There was a time when the Toyota Prius was the only option for buyers who wanted to advertise the fact that they love the environment. Celebrities and consumers alike proudly drove the efficient little soapboxes as a statement of being different.
Today things have changed, as relatively low gas prices and an influx of new hybrids, electrics, and diesels sit on dealer lots around the world while the Prius has lost favor among trendsetters.
Basically, the timing for an all-new Prius couldn’t be worse. You know who doesn’t care?
The all-new Prius.
Automotive News said in an article,
“Toyota has the luxury of not having to wait for the perfect time simply because of the strength of the Prius brand,” said Devin Lindsay, North American powertrain analyst at IHS Automotive. “All the other [hybrid] players are not quite as strong, so they may have to calculate their timing better.”
All that considered, Toyota doesn’t plan to change the car’s basic formula or sales pitch much.”
Will current Prius owners be persuaded to stay loyal to their brand? More importantly, will new buyers find their way into a Prius?
If the new car is fun to drive and looks good, Toyota shouldn’t have a problem staying on top of the hybrid best-sellers list. Toyota is well aware of that fact, as North American CEO Jim Lentz said in the same Auto News article,
It’s still high mileage. But at the same time, it needs to get more aggressive in styling, and it needs to become a little bit more fun to drive.
The Prius also has the advantage of being priced near gas-powered cars, so some buyers might not even see it as a hybrid—just another high-mileage, practical vehicle.
The new Prius will debut later this year, and we will keep our eyes peeled for leaked images!
Will you be interested in the all-new Toyota Prius if it’s more fun to drive?