Daily Management Review

Toyota is trying to revive demand for Prius


12/17/2018


Sales of the Toyota Prius, the world's first mass-produced hybrid car, have been falling for several years. For the first 11 months of 2018, they fell by 23.2%, according to CNBC.



The Japanese automaker hopes that the launch of the updated Toyota Prius will revive demand, but it is not known whether this will be enough. The company’s representatives admit that they are trying to figure out what to do next.

"For the next Prius car, we need to think about how ... to separate [it] from the rest of the Toyota line," said the deputy chief engineer Koichi Kaneko.

Pressure on the demand had a drop in fuel prices. In addition, attractiveness of the Prius declined as Toyota proposed a hybrid version of the Corolla sedan and RAV4 SUV.

"Toyota can say that Prius did everything they needed," said Stephanie Brinley, chief automotive analyst at IHS Markit, noting that Prius helped the Japanese automaker gain a foothold in the green transport market.

“But do they still need the Prius?” Brinley added. “Perhaps it makes sense to abandon it.”

However, Toyota does not plan to do this at least for now. The 2019 model shows that the automaker is looking for ways to make the hybrid hatchback more attractive. In particular, there have been some design changes in response to widespread criticism of the fourth-generation model after its debut in 2015.

But the biggest change in the 2019 model was the electric all-wheel drive system, which significantly improves the grip of the Prius hatchback on slippery roads.

source: cnbc.com






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