Toyota to continue offering stripped-down 2G Prius alongside 3G Prius

Discussion in 'Prius, Hybrid, EV and Alt-Fuel News' started by Danny, Jan 22, 2009.

  1. Danny

    Danny Admin/Founder
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2003
    6,846
    1,789
    1,174
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Vehicle:
    2013 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    [​IMG]

    According to Japan's business paper, Nikkei, Toyota has decided to continue with production of the 2G (current generation) Prius alongside the upcoming 3G 2010 Prius. Apparently the plan is to strip the interior along with the price and (shockingly!) offer it as a competitor to the Honda Insight II.

    We're probably looking at a $3,000 price drop on the current-gen Prius once the 3G 2010 is released if they want to compete with the Insight.

    It's nice to see that Toyota is somewhat looking out for resale values by only offering a stripped version of the current generation.

    Could this be a sign that the Japanese are more willing than we thought to create a "Prius" brand? Is this the beginning of a happy Prius family?

    Toyota Will Keep Selling Old Prius
     
  2. JSH

    JSH Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2007
    2,604
    136
    0
    Location:
    PDX
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Is this new information or just another US magazine picking up the 19-Jan story by Nikkei? The Nikkei article printed 19-Jan said that the stripped down Prius was for "corporate users" and would only be sold in half of Toyota's sales channels.

    I think Toyota is targeting taxi fleets not US retail customers.
     
  3. Unlimited_MPG

    Unlimited_MPG Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2007
    218
    23
    0
    Location:
    Federal Way, WA
    Vehicle:
    2011 Prius
    Model:
    Five
    I was wondering the same thing. From the way it is written it seemed to me it might be for US retail customers??
     
  4. grand total

    grand total Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2007
    154
    14
    0
    Location:
    ON, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Three
    I wouldn't be surprised if this happened in North America too. I suspect that Toyota may do whatever it has to do to keep it's sales rolling. If they already have a line still producing (modified or not) G2 Prius then they may as well sell them wherever they can, espeically where there is already existing infrastructure for that model.
     
  5. Flying White Dutchman

    Flying White Dutchman Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2007
    4,374
    304
    0
    Vehicle:
    2012 Chevy Volt
    i thin there is just a Over stock now because gas prices are down again!
    and this is a way to get that stock down.
     
  6. patsparks

    patsparks An Aussie perspective

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2007
    10,667
    557
    0
    Location:
    Adelaide South Australia
    Vehicle:
    2004 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Could the Iconic Prius become the VW beetle of the 2000s?
    Could this shape live on for the millenia?
     
  7. JSH

    JSH Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2007
    2,604
    136
    0
    Location:
    PDX
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    I would say that Toyota is replacing this:

    [​IMG]


    With this:

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2004
    38,086
    9,334
    40
    Location:
    Canada
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Depends how efficient the LPGs are.
     
  9. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2008
    11,627
    2,502
    8
    Location:
    Southwest Colorado
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius v wagon
    Model:
    Two
    Sounds like a really smart move on Toyota's part if it does come to retail. I personally just do not want to come down from 60 mpg and I don't think the Insight II is going to manage that level in general; but for people getting their first hybrid, having the choice of the G2 Prius or the G2 Insight for sub $20k would be great news.
     
  10. gmalis1

    gmalis1 New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2008
    134
    14
    1
    Location:
    Northwest 'burbs, Chicago
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    Do you really think that Toyota would have two competing models in the same line?

    Do you think they would screw over the resale value of other valued Prius owners when they trade in their vehicle by having lingering new Gen 2 vehicles being sold at a discount price?

    I know Toyota is smarter than that.

    They will get rid of the current inventory and maybe sell the remaining Gen 2's to fleets.

    Honda Insight or not, Toyota would never have two year models of the same vehicle nameplate competing against each other.
     
  11. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2008
    11,627
    2,502
    8
    Location:
    Southwest Colorado
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius v wagon
    Model:
    Two
    Are your questions directed to me Gmailis ?
    I think that if Toyota believes that the Insight II will carve out a low-price hybrid niche that includes stealing sales from the G3 Prius, they will find a way to compete. Your concerns make sense mostly from a consumer standpoint, but if the Insight II turns out to be a sub $20k winner, it is going to cut G2 Prius resale value anyway.
     
  12. PriusSport

    PriusSport senior member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2008
    1,498
    88
    0
    Location:
    SE PA
    Vehicle:
    2013 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Unless gas climbs back to $4 soon, hybrids will have to come down in price to compete in the short term. Pricing becomes a more important issue in the marketplace with $2 gas. That means below $20K for a hybrid. Honda has the right idea pricing the Insight at $17K, if that's accurate.
     
  13. hampdenwireless

    hampdenwireless Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2005
    1,104
    83
    0
    Location:
    Baltimore MD
    Vehicle:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    The current price of the Prius in the US is $22000. I suggest that Toyota will price it at $20000 ($19999!) They may remove content to do that, though that would not be necessary. This does not screw over' the current owner. It will possibly drop resale values 10% (similar to the price cut) but will really steal sales from the Insight. Also pricing is down anyhow, with the bad economy Prius are being discounted now.

    At $20,000 the Gen 2 Prius makes the Insight a rather bad choice.
     
  14. Tech_Guy

    Tech_Guy Class Clown

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    868
    118
    0
    Location:
    Silicon Valley, CA --- Land of Fruits & Nuts
    Vehicle:
    2011 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    If they are planning to offer a stripped-down version of the current 2G model, I hope that the first thing they take out of it (to reduce cost) is the damn bladder / gas tank....

    Keith :)
     
  15. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2004
    38,086
    9,334
    40
    Location:
    Canada
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    If you guys want to see an example of this, Volkswagen Canada has already done this with the Golf and Jetta. They're called the CityGolf and CityJetta and are both based on the previous generation Golf and Jetta but stripped to the bare bones and offered for Cdn$15k (or about the price of a Yaris). They're normally offered for $21k (3-dr Rabbit man. and a bit more for a Jetta). "Load" them up with A/C, pwr win/lock/mirror/cruise and it's about $18-19k.
     
  16. Rybold

    Rybold globally warmed member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2008
    2,760
    320
    3
    Location:
    Southern California
    Vehicle:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    Actually, I think that continuing the vehicle at a slightly reduced price might actually help the resale values. Almost always, when a new version of a model comes out, the resale value of the previous version falls significantly. If they continue to sell it as the "Prius Classic," then the pre-owned vehicles will not be seen as "the old model," but rather as the still-being-produced Classic model. (and if it is a stripped down version, the 2004-2009 models could actually increase in price due to demand/supply). This would not be the first time that an automaker has continued an old model. Automakers have done this many times before. Usually, they only continue production for about a year, but I think the G2 Prius is new enough and enough of a "Classic" (will always look attractive) style that it could continue for many years to come.

    And let us not forget that with Toyota's previous announcement of a Certified PreOwned vehicle program, Toyota definitely has an interest in the resale value of the G2 versions.
     
  17. Celtic Blue

    Celtic Blue New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2008
    2,224
    136
    0
    Location:
    Midwest
    Vehicle:
    2008 Prius
    Puts a torpedo amidships in the unsupportable theories that Toyota has been losing money on the G2 doesn't it?

    Sounds like this might be a way of soaking up battery volume commitments while waiting to build a new Prius plant in the U.S. perhaps?

    It's kind of smart to sell the older model cheaply so as not to dent the price of the newer model.
     
  18. patsparks

    patsparks An Aussie perspective

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2007
    10,667
    557
    0
    Location:
    Adelaide South Australia
    Vehicle:
    2004 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    When did Toyota do this in the past?
    The 2 cars are too similar.
    Oh poo, I just remembered when.
    When Toyota bought out the Tarago with the 2.4 litre engine flat under the floor they continued the old model as the Spacia with slight changes to tinware like rounding some corners.
    These were very different vehicles and there was a significant increase in the price of the Tarago with the new bigger model.
     
  19. Mike Dimmick

    Mike Dimmick Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2008
    963
    241
    0
    Location:
    Reading, UK
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    Model:
    N/A
    I can't see Toyota stripping the interior. Any changes will require redesign work, and that costs money. They'll probably just build base models only. Possibly they could swap the cloth for slightly lower-grade fabric.

    The UK might potentially get a 'T2' which is closer to US base model spec (i.e. 15" wheels, no leather on the steering wheel). The floor mats might go or become an option (standard in the UK). I shouldn't think they'll drop the alarm system or VSC, though, nor locking wheelnuts - the security features are absolutely necessary as we've historically had very high levels of car and wheel theft (I seem to recall someone reporting on the UK Yahoo group that all non-locking nuts had been stolen from their car, leaving it with one nut per wheel only). ABS is virtually mandatory and competitors largely already have VSC or equivalent. The Touring-grade suspension definitely should stay.

    It's possible they'll stop fitting the thermos to the US model, unless that screws up the emissions certification (wouldn't want to pay for type approval again). And they might drop Smart Key (no UK models have it).

    The bladder fuel tank will stay - it's part of the evaporative emissions system to meet US EVAP regs. Europe and Japan don't have it on any models at the moment as our HC emission regulations are virtually non-existent. Our fuel pumps do not make a seal with the car, and there's no system to return vapour to the pump when refuelling, so there's a fuel vapour haze over every filling station. Only tailpipe HC emissions are measured.
     
  20. DeadPhish

    DeadPhish Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2005
    2,010
    353
    0
    Location:
    Outer Banks of NC.. Retired to play golf and poker
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    As I noted in the other thread the current Package No 1 is the stripped down Prius today. This package is not offered to the retail buyer, it's a fleet-only model. It doesn't have SKS or the backup camera ( stripped interior ). They could replace the alloys with steel wheels and save another couple of hundred.

    But most importantly they've already covered their fixed costs on the Gen 2 so they can price this new 'strippie' based soley on marginal costs ( labor, materials and marketing ), reduce the price a couple of thousand $$ and still make a profit.

    Those vehicles would not be in anyway equivalent to our current models except in functionality.
     
Loading...