Published December 20, 2011
By Jeff Cobb
This week Toyota announced incremental price increases for the Prius Liftback ranging from 2 percent to 4.3 percent.
Formerly known as the “regular Prius,” the car which is now the progenitor of a growing sub brand for the Japanese automaker will start at $24,000 for the Prius Two and range to $29,805 for the Prius Five.
As many of you know, the Prius Liftback ranges from levels One to Five, with the Prius One – going up by $895 – being only available to fleets.
Price increases are otherwise as follows: $480 for the Two, $1,045 for the Three, $915 for the Four and $1,015 for the Five.
The Liftback line will be slightly refreshed when made available January 2012 with customers having a choice of four trim lines and seven configurations.
Changes include refreshed front fascia, revised tail lamps, newly styled 15-inch wheel covers and LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL) with on/off feature, as well as individual features for respective models.
Inside, an optional Entune infotainment system will be available. This is Toyota’s answer to Ford’s SYNC system and connects via Bluetooth to a driver’s smartphone to show its applications on the navigation screen.
These Prii will continue to be made in Japan.
Yesterday we ran a brief mentioning Gen 3 Prii being assembled by Toyota with a joint venture partner in China, but to further clarify, those Prii are for that market only, not the North American market.
According to Toyota Communications Manager, Greg Thome Toyota has no plans to discontinue Japanese production, and while there has been talk in the past of producing in North America, it has no plans for this in the works at this time.
One reason Thome cited why the Prius is still only imported from Japan was a supply chain issue. Namely, he said Toyota's Prius component suppliers are in Japan, and he indicated getting set up in North America would require overcoming that hurdle.