substantiated rumors of gen 4 production

Discussion in 'Prius, Hybrid, EV and Alt-Fuel News' started by austingreen, May 1, 2012.

  1. austingreen

    austingreen Senior Member

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    http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20120430/OEM01/304309976

     
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  2. Skoorbmax

    Skoorbmax Senior Member

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    Interesting, I was wondering about this earlier today.
     
  3. spwolf

    spwolf Senior Member

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    didnt they buy lithium ore mining field/JV recently in Canada? That makes sense then... You would have plenty of other hybrids being produced here so basically main idea would be hybrid battery production in NA, not just Prius. Since they have Camry, Highlander, RX and then probably Rav4 and Corolla hybrids that will be produced in USA.

    Keep in mind that all plans can change, but i think we are set for their hybrid battery factory in NA for sure.
     
  4. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    do they get the hycam parts from N/A? i thought they brought most parts in and assembled here.
     
  5. justlurkin

    justlurkin Señor Member

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    It is indeed good that Toyota is finally going to build Prii here in the U.S..

    Still, I think they were behind the curve on this one. If Toyota had gone ahead like they originally planned to build the Prius at Blue Springs back during the financial crisis of 2009, they could have avoided the Tsunami shortages last year and be in an even better position right now, with gas at almost $5 per gallon.
     
  6. ProximalSuns

    ProximalSuns Senior Member

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    Perfect timing. I'll be upgrading from 2012 Prius3/3.

    Toyota has to be figuring 60 mpg by 2015. I wonder how they'll do it?
     
  7. usbseawolf2000

    usbseawolf2000 HSD PhD

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    3 years seems so far away!
     
  8. Rybold

    Rybold globally warmed member

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    Consider this...
    With the Prius v, Prius c, and Camry Hybrid all having brand new models just enter the market, Toyotas engineers are completely freed up now to start working on the Gen IV.

    :car:

    .
     
  9. spwolf

    spwolf Senior Member

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    hybrid parts are imported from Japan... for Prius what it seems is that they want NA suppliers (although that often means Japanese companies setting shop in USA)... and as I said, they bought into lithium ore JV in Canada as well.

    I dont think it is 3 years, pretty sure G4 will start sales in 2 years... so little time to organize everything though.
     
  10. austingreen

    austingreen Senior Member

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    Most parts are from NA. The battery, motors, psd are from japan. The bulk of the engine should be from the US, but may have some Japanese parts.

    The link says they are trying to source these parts in N.A., but nimh will always stay in asia. Ford is the only company building PSD type gearing in N.A., and it is doubtfull that they want to purchase from them, so PSD might remain asian sourced from toyota and aisin. Lithium batteries, motors, inverters, etc. will be built in N.A. At some point the camry hybrid may be redesigned to use Limh or Li polymer.

    They start designing the next generation even before the current generation reaches production. Part of the team stays and works on refreshes.

    This is good news, but is only a rumor. Toyota was going to build gen 3 here, but lets hope that it is true. This move will lower toyota's cost which hopefully results in lower prices and more hybrids on the road.
     
  11. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    Lexus Pluin-In's can't be far off now .

    :thumb:
    .
     
  12. walter Lee

    walter Lee Hypermiling Padawan

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    In 2008, Toyota put on hold opening a USA Prius
    plant in Tupelo, Mississippi [1] which was announced
    in Feburary 2007 because lagging sales. Reportedly,
    the building for this $1.3 billion factory is 90%
    complete. It's highly possible, that Toyota will
    look there to build Prii in the USA. The other possiblity
    is to have ex-Toyota now Tesla New United Motor
    Manufacturing Inc (NUMMI), factory in California sub
    contracted out build to build the next gen of Prii.[3]

    With respect to increasing the 4th generation Prius'
    fuel efficiency - The president of Toyota said that
    Toyota will be looking at increasing the thermally
    efficiency of the Prius's gasoline engine from 38%
    to 45% [2] which could translate to a maximum
    potential 18% increase in fuel efficiency ( 9 mpg).
    IMHO if Toyota could shave a few hundred pounds off
    the Prius it would be not only faster but more fuel
    efficient. The possiblity of higher priced rare earth
    elements and Toyota's focus on keeping hybrid tech
    at an affordable price point will likely translates to
    using a smaller and much lighter weight High Voltage
    Traction battery - and using electrical power more
    selectively to gain higher fuel efficiency - which
    will requires more sophisticated computer programming.

    In 2015, I'm expecting the 4th generation Prius to get about
    62 mpg city/ 54 mpg highway/58 mpg combined. Why?
    because with a few hypermiling tricks its possible with a
    3rd generation Prius..

    ==========

    [1]
    Toyota Delays Opening of U.S. Prius Plant Indefinitely to Cut Costs - WOT on Motor Trend
    Toyota plant near Tupelo, Miss., has begun taking applications for production workers » The Commercial Appeal


    [2]
    Toyota targets 45% thermal efficiency for engines in next-gen hybrids

    [3]
    UPDATE 4-Toyota gets Tesla stake, Tesla gets Toyota factory | Reuters
    [ame="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NUMMI"]NUMMI - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]
    [ame="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tesla_Factory"]Tesla Factory - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]
     
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  13. krazypriuslady

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    we need pics!! :)
     
  14. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    if they do startsourcing parts from N/A, i just hope we don't have another fiasco like the accelerator problem from indiana.
     
  15. Rybold

    Rybold globally warmed member

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    When they canceled the plan before, it was when the global economy caused auto sales to plummet. This was when GM filed bankruptcy and the govt bailed out GM, Chrysler, and almost Ford. It was in that grave economic environment that Toyota rescinded their plans to create new plants and production.

    Today, however, the auto makers are not facing what they were facing back during that dismal time. Toyota, is likely now considering resuming where they left off with their plans to take over the world.
     
  16. austingreen

    austingreen Senior Member

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    It does look more likely that they actually move some prius production here this time. This is talk about likely production though, as opposed to the commitment toyota made before. That is why I labeled it a rumor.

    I don't buy any of toyota's excuses though about cancelling their plans before though. In the automotive recession, it did make sense to postpone the plans. There was risk that numbers would be too low to build a plant only for the prius. But there was no reason that a plant only needed to be for the prius, when they killed NUMMI it was a fine opportunity to build a prius/corrola plant. The Tundra only plant in Texas was a bigger mistake than a prius only plant would have been, but it is profitable now that the tacoma line was moved there. By cancelling instead of postponing they are now adding cost to every prius built. They assumed that the dollar would be stronger, which was a bad assumption in hindsight, but even with their projected exchange rate a North American prius was cheaper to build. The tsunami and thai floods just made this decision look worse.

    Now the big risk to moving production is the japanese side. If they move production in 2015 will they need to close a factory in Japan or layoff workers. This may move this again away from an economic decision to a political one.
     
  17. The Electric Me

    The Electric Me Go Speed Go!

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    Slightly off topic....

    But I remember when Toyota was mired in all the negative publicity and recalls. Akio Toyoda proclaimed that he thought Toyota had perhaps made a mistake by expanding too quickly.

    Akio Toyoda said to congress that Toyota would focus on "Quality over Quantity".

    With Toyota's almost boastful exuberance in regards to their total amount of new models being released...and their very rapid expansion of Prius?

    You have to wonder about the sincerity of Akio Toyoda's claims. Is Toyota falling back into the trap they fought so hard to get out of? I don't see Toyota slowing down, or emphasising Quality over Quantity.

    I'm not saying that the products currently being produced aren't good, but I'm saying when Toyota was mired in negative publicity, they themselves pointed to rapid expansion as a contributing factor in some real problems. And I don't see a commitment to slowing expansion. Infact, Toyota's business model right now, seems to be, "We Are The First, With The Most and The Newest".
     
  18. austingreen

    austingreen Senior Member

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    First, if toyota builds more quality prii in North America at a lower cost and better value to the consumer, that can only be a good thing.

    But some facts from the past -
    Toyoda Asks How Many Times Toyota Errs Emulating GM Failures - Bloomberg
    There was a rush to sell Trucks and SUVs which was the overexpansion. There was not a rush to build prius factories here.
    They always thought of the prius as not in that over expanded catagory.

    This could have been built at other factories. Toyota even offered to share the prius with GM and build it at NUMMI. Two major factories that they did not need. But.... They decided to close NUMMI and shift Tacoma to San Antonio and Corolla to Mississippi. Tundra could have stayed in Indiana. They could have built them all at NUMMI - corola, tacoma, prius, but NUMMI had california regulations, and higher UAW and electricity costs. Once Watanabe's spending took place, and NUMMI had plans to close, canceling bringing the prius to NA did not save much in capital costs.

    This was written before the recalls. Did Toyota's push to grow so fast impact prius quality? I don't think so. It did make them ignore many of their quality principals though in order to increase production. I hope these have been put back in place

     
  19. smokiejoe

    smokiejoe Member

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    Toyota Tupelo, MS is up and running building Corolla's right now.
     
  20. spwolf

    spwolf Senior Member

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    why would they buy from Ford? :). They are looking at suppliers in NA, doesnt mean from NA based suppliers... usually when factory is made, suppliers like denos, aisin, etc, locate around it. So I dont doubt that PSD will be made in NA as well, by Aisin NA or Denso.

    As to your balabering (again) about rush on trucks, quality, etc, they make what people buy... people are now buying Prius, hence they will build it here. As to NUMMI it is as big as GM's fault as Toyotas.
     
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