This announcement, coupled with its compressed natural gas powered Camry Hybrid concept display at the 2008 Los Angeles Auto Show, signal Toyota's intention to broaden the scope of its advanced alternative-fuel vehicle development.
The all-electric FT-EV concept shares its platform with the iQ urban commuter vehicle, and can drive up to 50 miles on a single charge.
Although BEVs and new smaller vehicles like the iQ will be a key component of Toyota's sustainable mobility strategy, the conventional gas-electric hybrid, like the all new third-generation Prius, also set for this month’s Detroit event, is considered Toyota's long-term core powertrain technology. Additionally, Toyota plans to showcase a brand new Lexus dedicated hybrid called the HS250h.
Towards the end of the year, Toyota will start global delivery of 500 Prius plug-in hybrids powered by lithium-ion batteries. Of these initial vehicles, 150 will be placed with U.S. lease-fleet customers. The cars will be used for market and engineering analysis. Lease–fleet customers will monitor the performance and durability of the first-generation lithium-ion battery, while offering real world feedback on how future customers might respond to the plug-in process.