Nov 28, 2012– Melbourne, Australia (Techreleased) – A luxury version of the seven-seat Prius v has arrived in Australia – just as the Toyota group’s local hybrid sales pass 10,000 units in a year for the first time.
The Prius v i-Tech® has even more advanced safety, comfort and convenience technologies compared with the highly specified version of the car launched in May this year.
The added features include dynamic radar cruise control1, a pre-crash safety system2 for the brakes and seatbelts and a satellite navigation system with digital radio3.
It is also fitted with a head-up display that includes navigation prompts, eight-speaker JBL sound system, premium seat coverings and a self-parking system known as Intelligent Park Assist4.
The introduction of the Prius v i-Tech® comes within days of combined sales for Toyota and Lexus-branded hybrids passing 10,000 units.
Of these, customers have bought more than 8,000 Toyota hybrids and close to 2,000 Lexus hybrids this year, both of which are also records.
The previous best combined result was 9,422 vehicles in 2010 – 8,444 for Toyota and 978 for Lexus.
Hybrids now account for the highest-ever proportion of sales for the two brands – 33.9 per cent for Lexus and 4.5 per cent for Toyota.
Toyota has marketed petrol-electric hybrids in Australia since the first-generation Prius arrived in 2001 while Lexus hybrids began arriving in 2006.
Toyota and Lexus dealers have now sold more than 45,000 hybrid vehicles in Australia, including in excess of 38,000 for Toyota and 7,800 for Lexus.
Prius is now in its third generation and this year has been joined by the Prius c city car, which has racked up 1,516 sales to the end of October, and the Prius v with 594 sales.
Last month, Toyota globally passed one million hybrid sales in a year for the first time. Its cumulative hybrid sales are now more than 4.6 million.
The new Prius v i-Tech®, priced from $46,490*, is designed to extend the car’s appeal, making it an alternative to luxury small and mid-size sedans, SUVs and crossover vehicles.
The Prius v launched in May remains at $35,990* with the added equipment in the i-Tech® more than compensating for the price difference.
Other new features include auto-levelling LED projector headlamps with washers, an electro-chromatic rear-view mirror, front-seat heaters, water-repellent front-door windows and a panoramic roof with electric sunshade.
Prius v – longer, wider and taller than the Prius hatch – has an extended wheelbase that enables it to accommodate seven adults using a 2-3-2 seating configuration.
The panoramic roof raises the i-Tech® height by 25mm to 1615mm. The co-efficient of drag is 0.29.
The adoption of three-row seating has been achieved by installing a highly compact, space-saving lithium-ion battery pack that is placed under the centre console between the front seats.
Other features that are standard across the Prius v range include seven airbags, reversing camera (with guidelines in i-Tech®), hill-start assist, stability and traction control, anti-skid brakes, brake assist and electronic brake-force distribution.
Power comes from the latest generation of Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive® powertrain, which employs a 1.8-litre Atkinson cycle petrol engine and a powerful 60kW electric motor for a combined system output of 100kW.
Prius v i-Tech® returns class-leading fuel economy of 4.4 litres/100km and CO2 emissions of 101g/km5.
Like all new Toyota vehicles, it is covered by Toyota Service Advantage. It has a capped price of $130 for each of up to six scheduled services in the first three years or 60,000km6.
Prius v i-Tech® technologies in detail
1. Pre-Crash Safety System2
This is a fusion of leading-edge active and passive safety technology that applies advanced millimetre-wavelength radar to scan the road ahead.
It uses information from the Vehicle Stability Control sensors (that monitor vehicle speed, steering angle and yaw rate) and the brake system to determine if an emergency situation is developing.
If there is a high possibility of a collision, the system will prepare the car to help reduce injuries and damage.
It will alert the driver and provide additional braking assistance to ensure maximum effectiveness when the driver uses the brake pedal.
In an extreme situation, when a crash is unavoidable, it will apply the brakes even if the driver has not taken any action.
The system will also activate electric motors to pre-tension the driver and front-passenger seatbelts in anticipation of an impact.
The seatbelts can also be retracted under emergency braking or when the Vehicle Stability Control detects that the vehicle is uncontrollable.
The pre-crash brake will operate when the Prius v i-Tech® is travelling at 15km/h or greater and the system detects a speed difference of at least 15km/h with a vehicle ahead of it.
2. Dynamic radar cruise control1
This technology uses the radar and other sensors to govern speed to maintain a selected distance from another vehicle travelling in the same lane.
If the radar detects there is no vehicle ahead, the cruise control operates conventionally with the vehicle travelling at the speed selected by the driver.
When it detects a slower vehicle ahead, it calculates the distance between the vehicles based on the duration and input angle of returning radar waves.
The system lowers the speed of the Prius v i-Tech® by reducing power and, if necessary, by applying the brakes to maintain the desired vehicle spacing.
If further braking is required, it alerts the driver to intervene by sounding an alarm.
Once the road ahead is clear, the car automatically returns to its original pre-set cruising speed.
3. Intelligent Park Assist4
This technology controls the steering to help a driver manoeuvre the car into parallel and 90-degree reverse parking.
It employs a camera and ultrasonic sensors to identify a parking space and to calculate the appropriate steering angle to guide the vehicle into it.
The camera is mounted near the rear number plate and the ultrasonic sensors are mounted either side of the front bumper.
No steering input is required from the driver, who merely controls vehicle speed during the manoeuvre by using the brake pedal.
For parallel parking, the driver slowly drives the car past the intended parking space, allowing the system’s sonar sensors to detect the available space. The driver stops the car just beyond the space in a normal manner.
After the driver shifts into reverse gear and selects the parallel parking option, the system control unit determines the target parking position.
It then calculates the required trajectory and steering angle, while a view of the target parking position is projected onto the centre console touch screen.
The driver can fine-tune the exact parking position by using arrows on the touch-screen before confirming acceptance of the target position and system activation.
After checking traffic conditions to ensure it is safe to reverse, the driver releases the brake pedal and the vehicle will begin reversing at a slow speed.
For 90-degree reverse parking, the driver brings the vehicle to a stop diagonally to the target parking position, and then selects reverse gear and “90-degree reverse park”.
The system will help execute the parking manoeuvre in a similar fashion to parallel parking.
In both types of parking, the driver is responsible for controlling the car’s speed and stopping the vehicle using the brake pedal.
The driver can deactivate the system at any time through either throttle or steering input.
Prius v i-Tech® operates under electric power when reversing.
4. Body control with torque demand
This system utilises the electric motor to adjust the torque to help flatten out road-surface undulations, resulting in less pitching and bouncing.
The torque of the electric motor is controlled in real time, based on input from the vehicle’s wheel-speed sensors that monitor bumps and dips in the road.
The information is fed to the hybrid system computer, which instructs the motor to apply the appropriate torque.
For example, if the vehicle’s nose lifts because of the road surface, the drive force is reduced slightly to counteract this.
If the vehicle’s nose dips, the drive force is increased slightly to smooth it out.
This results in a better-quality ride and better tyre grip which, in turn, enhances steering feel.
5. LED headlamps
Light-emitting diode (LED) headlamps improve light distribution, increase bulb life and reduce power consumption compared with conventional systems.
LED headlamps are designed to be maintenance-free, with the lamps lasting the life of the vehicle, maintaining more than 90 per cent intensity after 15 years (or 4000 hours).
The LED bulbs resist the chief problem of conventional headlamp bulbs – going “open circuit” due to vehicle vibration.
The LED bulbs also have advantages in faster illumination – taking 0.1 second from when the headlamp is turned on, compared with 0.3 seconds for halogen bulbs and 15 seconds for HID bulbs.
The Prius v i-Tech® low-beam system consists of three LED lamps per side, with an integrated heat sink to increase package efficiency.
There is a separate halogen high-beam lamp.
6. Panoramic roof
The resin panoramic roof comes in two sections – front (400mm x 790mm) and rear (410mm x 790mm).
Compared with a glass roof, the panoramic roof is lighter by 40 per cent due to the use of resin and the direct adhesion of the roof to the body.
Less weight results in a lower centre of gravity for the vehicle, contributing to steering stability.
A hard coating is applied to the surface of the resin roof to prevent deterioration by scratching or ultraviolet light.
The resin has excellent heat-insulation properties and ultra-violet protection is close to 100 per cent.
In addition, the roof is fitted with an electric shade that helps reduce air-conditioner load.
The sunshade automatically closes when the car is locked and is designed to prevent jamming.
7. Premium seat covering
This is a synthetic material that provides the texture of genuine leather, making it easy to clean while weighing about 30 per cent less.
Volatile Organic Compounds during the production procedure have been reduced to contribute to enhancing environmental performance.
1. Dynamic Radar Cruise Control is not an accident avoidance system. It is a driver-assist technology and should not be used in place of safe driving practices. The driver should continue to monitor road ahead.
2. Pre-Crash Safety System is a driver assist technology and should not be used in place of safe driving practices. Driver should continue to monitor road ahead.
3. Digital radio station coverage dependent on vehicle location.
4. Intelligent Park Assist is designed as a driver-assist device only and should not be used as a substitute for skilled driving and safe parking practices. The driver should watch the area into which the vehicle is to be reversed, react appropriately and ensure compliance with all road rules. Intelligent Park Assist requires driver brake control.
5. Fuel consumption and emissions data will vary depending on driving conditions/style, vehicle conditions and options/accessories. Source of data: ADR 81/02.
6. Excludes government and rental vehicles. Contact your Toyota dealer or go to toyota.com.au/advantage for other exclusions and eligibility.
* Recommended retail price excludes dealer delivery, government and statutory charges and optional extras.