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Toyota to unveil plug-in Prius hybrid at Frankfurt

Toyota will have a production version of its plug-in Prius hybrid at the Frankfurt Auto Show next month, with a European release date of summer 2012.

Toyota will debut the plug-in version of its Prius hybrid at the Frankfurt Auto Show in Germany next month, calling it the most environmentally-friendly and technologically-advanced Prius to date. The plug-in Prius will be able to travel about 12 miles purely on electric power after a full charge, which would take an hour and a half from a conventional household outlet. That pales in comparison to the 40-mile electric range of the Chevrolet Volt, but is a big improvement from the 2 miles a normal Prius can travel on electricity alone.

The plug-in Toyota Prius will be the first alternatively-fueled Toyota to use lithium-ion batteries, instead of the nickel-metal hydride found in Toyota's, and most other manufacturers', hybrids. The electric motor and 1.8L gasoline engine will remain the same as in the current Prius. Toyota claims that the plug-in Prius will be able to achieve 106.9mpg by EPA standards.

Toyota has not announced pricing on the plug-in Prius yet, but it will initially be sold in Europe beginning in summer 2012, alongside the Auris hybrid, the Yaris hybrid, and the upcoming seven-seat Prius+.

Source: Automotive News