TOKYO -- Toyota Motor Corp. will debut production versions of its Scion FR-S sporty car and Prius C at this month's Tokyo Motor Show, making its exhibit likely one of the most closely watched ones of the show.
Toyota will also showcase the production version of its Prius Plug-in Hybrid and close-to-market concepts of its iQ electric vehicle and a new fuel cell-powered sedan.
The sporty car will be sold under the Scion nameplate in North America but will debut at the Tokyo show as a Toyota. The company hasn't announced its Japan-market name.
The vehicle is the rebadged sibling of the Subaru BRZ sporty car, which also will be unveiled in production form in Tokyo. Both cars are expected to enter production early next year. Toyota did the exterior design, while Subaru supplied the boxer engine and will assemble the car at its plant in Gunma, Japan.
The Prius C, as it will be known in North America, makes its world premiere as the Toyota Aqua for the Japanese market. It goes on sale here next month and will hit showrooms in the United States next year.
The Prius C, a subcompact hatchback based on the Yaris platform, will have fuel consumption of 2.87 liters per 100 kilometers (98.4 UK mpg or 82 U.S. mpg) under Japan's testing cycle, which does not directly compare with the EPA's. Expect a much lower mpg number in the United States.
The car comes in just under 4000mm long (156 inches), seats five and is powered by a 1.5-liter engine mated to a new, lightweight Toyota hybrid system. Photos show a Yaris-style front, a Prius-like roofline and an all-new wavy side-panel treatment that curves up and over the rear wheels.
Toyota says the Aqua/Prius C's new hybrid system includes a new inverter, motor and battery. All told, the hybrid drivetrain weighs about 40 kilograms (88 pounds) less than that in the standard Prius.
The Aqua/Prius C is expected to get an electric-only cruising range of 24 kilometers (15 miles) and fuel economy of more than 1.75 liters per 100 kilometers (161 UK mpg or 134 U.S. mpg) under Japanese standards.The car will be built by Toyota's Kanto Auto Works Ltd. affiliate in Iwate prefecture in northern Japan.
The company opted for Aqua as a stand-alone name in Japan, rather than a Prius-derived name, in an attempt to create a new base of hybrid customers for vehicles notched one size-class below the Prius family of vehicles.
It is just the opposite in the United States, where Toyota wants to leverage the reputation of the Prius nameplate to drive sales of the new compact Prius C.