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Toyota Plug-In Prius

Discussion in 'Electric Vehicles' started by TEG, Jan 17, 2008.

  1. TEG

    TEG TMC Moderator

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  2. insndrvr

    insndrvr Member

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    From that article, it doesn't seem like making a plug-in Prius would be that much of a change to the existing car. I wonder why they can't just offer that as an option for the 2009 model year, and use the feedback from that to help develop the other plug-in hybrid they are planning.
     
  3. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    Another facet of this pivotal moment in time

    EV1

    Tesla Roadster

    2008 Detroit Auto Show
     
  4. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    #4 stopcrazypp, Jan 19, 2008
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2008
    Now that you mention it, I wonder how different things would be if the Tesla Roadster didn't exist. Sure, part of the reason for the Volt was as a response to the movie "Who Killed the Electric Car?", but a big reason, which even Lutz admits, is that a small startup from Silicon Valley showed that it was possible to build a competitive EV when all of the big companies said it was impossible.

    There's also no doubt in my mind Toyota would have likely left the Li-ion Plug-in Prius to die (judging from their previous enthusiasm, or lack thereof, for the project and strong doubts about the viability of the batteries), if GM didn't strongly push with their Volt.
     
  5. Jeff

    Jeff Member

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    You know what, Toyota has the best EV tech. right now. I would have never anticipated them slowing their pace down. They keep insisting on the plug-in parallel hybrid and even no plug originally. Maybe they are just playing this out in an attempt to confuse GM? Hmm. I mean they must see GM's EV concept is much more innovative and disruptive. Anyway at this rate General Motors is going to blow them out of the water with the the all-electric Volt. My opinion on Toyota has changed considerably. Yeah their hybrid synergy drive is second to none, though its a far cry from where we should be going. The volt concept is simply as good and economical as its gets presently. That's where we should be. It's fair to say General Motors has certainly earned some respect. Gimme my Chevy Volt.
     
  6. TEG

    TEG TMC Moderator

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    I don't pretend to know what GM or Toyota are really discussing behind the scenes, but I gather GM has a case of Prius envy, and Toyota has a case of "what do we do next?"
     
  7. SByer

    SByer '08 #383

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    Never underestimate the ability of a large bureaucracy to stop progress in it's tracks. Reading about the (lack of) progress on the PI-Prius, my impression was that management felt like they were forced into it, and that any excuse to delay or cancel would be taken - or, typical of the large company mentality, that if a battery couldn't be delivered at spec in the large quantities of big-company-think, then it wasn't worth doing.

    I'm of two minds on the Volt - on the one hand, kudos to GM for admitting that the ICE had no place in the line-of-torque and diving right after that. On the other hand, boo for keeping it an ICE (if, someone does the science, it's not the most efficient generator driver, which I suspect it isn't). Anyone have any pointers on that?
     
  8. TEG

    TEG TMC Moderator

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    Toyota and GM (in part) got to be the biggest car makers in the world because they do let the "bean counters" have a strong say in product decisions. They can undercut competition because they make GIANT contracts for engines and such. The upside is that the cost per engine is as low as possible, but the downside is that they have a long term commitment to use up a lot of specific engines. They order more engines than one model is expected to need so they need to keep using them in future models. I expect that the ICE in the Volt will be there in part because it is the most cost effective range extender they can get compared to using something else that isn't already in mass production.

    If you buy into the argument that the Volt would use plug in battery juice for nearly all motive power then it really doesn't matter if the ICE generator is sub-optimally efficient. Personally I think the ICE would get used more than suggested, so it would be a shame if the ICE generator wastes too much gas.

    It will be interesting to see what the effective MPG ends up being for plug-in Prius vs Volt. The EPA has already been scrambling to figure out a testing procedure that produces real world MPG values for hybrids, and now the upcoming plug-in hybrids may further confuse the EPA testing. (In other words, don't trust the factory sticker, and wait for "real world" customer reports).
     
  9. dpeilow

    dpeilow Moderator

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  10. SByer

    SByer '08 #383

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    As far as I'm concerned, I see the Prius as a whiff. They dumped a lot of R&D into their drive train, and seem to be unwilling to give it up, even if it means the plug-in has essentially no pure-electric range and requires a larger motor than a range-extended EV.

    But then, I'm not sure the average American consumer knows or cares.
     
  11. efusco

    efusco Moderator - Model S & X forums

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    Toyota Prius PHEV web site is live

    Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid Concept
    Not really a lot of news for anyone who's followed the program closely, but it's going public.

    2010 Prius Plug-in Hybrid Makes North American Debut at Los Angeles Auto Show
    Global Demonstration Program Starts this Month in Japan

    Assembly Line Production of 500 Lithium-ion Batteries Begins

    TORRANCE, Calif., December 2, 2009 - - The 2010 Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid vehicle (PHV) will make its North American debut today at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

    Built specifically to support a global demonstration program that begins this month, the Prius PHV is based on the third-generation Prius. The vehicle expands Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive technology with the introduction of a first generation lithium-ion battery that enables all-electric operation at higher speeds and longer distances than the conventional Prius hybrid. When fully charged, the vehicle is targeted to achieve a maximum electric-only range of approximately 13 miles and will be capable of achieving highway speeds up to approximately 60 mph in electric-only mode. For longer distances, the Prius PHV reverts to “hybrid mode” and operates like a regular Prius. This ability to utilize all-electric power for short trips or hybrid power for longer drives alleviates the issue of limited cruising range encountered with pure electric vehicles.

    Beginning later this month, a total of 350 vehicles will begin delivery in Japan and Europe in support of model programs with business and government partners aimed at raising societal awareness of, and preparedness for, this important new technology.

    Beginning early next year, 150 vehicles will start arriving in the U.S., where they will be placed in regional clusters with select partners for market/consumer analysis and technical demonstration.

    On the consumer side, the U.S. program will allow Toyota to gather in-use vehicle-use feedback to better understand customer expectations for plug-in technology. On the technical side, the program aims to confirm, in a wide variety of in-use applications, the overall performance of first-generation lithium-ion battery technology, while spurring the development of public-access charging station infrastructure.

    All vehicles will be equipped with data retrieval devices which will monitor activities such as how often the vehicle is charged and when; whether the batteries are depleted or being topped off during charging; trip duration, all-EV driving range, combined mpg and so on.

    “This program is a necessary first step in societal preparation, in that it allows us the unique opportunity to inform, educate and prepare customers for the introduction of plug-in hybrid technology,” said Irv Miller, TMS group vice president, environmental and public affairs. “When these vehicles come to market, customers must understand what to expect and if this technology is the right fit for them.”

    In October, Toyota announced its first regional program partnership with Xcel Energy's SmartGridCity program in Boulder, Colo. Ten PHVs will be placed with Boulder residents who will participate in an interdisciplinary research project coordinated by the University of Colorado at Boulder Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute (RASEI), a new joint venture between the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and the University of Colorado at Boulder.

    RASEI, Xcel Energy and TMS will use this program to gather data on vehicle performance and charging patterns, consumer behavior and preferences, as well as electric utility/customer interactions. The locale offers the additional benefit of monitoring high altitude, cold climate performance of Toyota's first generation lithium-ion battery.

    Additional partners will be announced soon. Regional programs are currently slated for California, Washington D.C., New York, Oregon and Pennsylvania. Each placement scenario will have a variety of ‘use cases’ or driving conditions to gain maximum input to vehicle performance and customer needs.

    To assist with customer education, Toyota has launched a PHV demonstration program website – Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid Concept. At the site, visitors can learn more about the technology, follow the program's progress and, once the vehicles are deployed, track the performance of the demonstration program fleet. This transparent communication of vehicle performance and in-use data will allow customers to make informed decisions when considering the purchase of a plug-in hybrid vehicle.

    It's All About The Battery

    The battery powering the Prius PHV is the first lithium-ion drive-battery developed by Toyota and its joint venture battery production company, Panasonic Electric Vehicle Energy (PEVE). In early November, PEVE began producing the first of more than 500 lithium batteries on a dedicated assembly line at its Teiho production facility in Japan.

    PEVE is the world's leading producer of nickel-metal hydride batteries for automotive drive applications, having surpassed two million units in total production volume. Nickel-metal batteries are ideal for mass producing affordable conventional hybrid vehicles due to their low cost, excellent quality, high reliability and moderate-demand charge-sustaining operation. Lithium-ion batteries, on the other hand, are more promising for pure electric and plug-in hybrid applications which require higher energy density to meet the higher demands of charge-depleting operation (large swings in charge/discharge). And, although lithium-ion batteries are less expensive in terms of materials, they are more expensive than nickel-metal in terms of production costs.

    This first-generation lithium battery has undergone more than three years of coordinated field testing in Japan, North America and Europe in a wide variety of climatic environments and driving conditions. Using approximately 150 conventional hybrids (mostly Prius), the field test vehicles logged well over a million combined miles. In the end, the battery was deemed both reliable and durable, confirming that it could indeed be used in conventional hybrid applications in the future, depending on further developments in cost reduction.

    The battery will now be placed into service in the 500 Prius PHVs dedicated to Toyota's global demonstration program which begins in December. Operating in a more severe charge-depleting mode, the battery's overall performance in a broad range of vehicle-use applications will be confirmed.
     
  12. TEG

    TEG TMC Moderator

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    Anyone know where to sign up to be on the demo program in Northern California?
     
  13. efusco

    efusco Moderator - Model S & X forums

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    I believe they've already selected the fleets they're going to work with....only 150 vehicles in the US. I have a few "Ins" with Toyota and can't figure a way to get one.
     
  14. efusco

    efusco Moderator - Model S & X forums

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    Prius PHV

    This is a video put together by Toyota from the recent "Toyota Meets the Prius Experts" event I was lucky enough to get to attend along with 8 other "Prius Experts" that moderate and answer questions at the Prius Facebook Ask an Expert page.

    During the event we had the opportunity to test drive one of the 150 PHV Prii that will be in the US for extended testing. For those not familiar it has ~13 mile EV range using the same mechanical components and a set of 3 lithium battery packs with a top speed of about 64mph highway (Toyota says 62, but several of us hit 65 before the ICE came on).

    http://video.ak.facebook.com/cfs-ak-ash1/27654/43/120224228002652_19081.mp4
     
  15. tdelta1000

    tdelta1000 Active Member

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    Th bid looked but I have a few questions.

    How big are the engines on the demo vehicles?
    What's the max range in EV before plugging in?
    How was the road noise?
    Is Toyota really pushing these into production?
    How big is the battery? And where does it sit in this Prius PH?
     
  16. efusco

    efusco Moderator - Model S & X forums

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    #16 efusco, May 8, 2010
    Last edited: May 8, 2010
    All mechanical components are essentially the same. The ICE is the same 1.8L in the Gen III, the MG1 and MG2 (60kW) are also identical. The HVAC system was changed significantly to a heat pump system that is very complex, but elegant and efficient.
    As always, YMMV! I went about 9 miles in EV/charge depletion mode before exceeding 65mph on the hwy and the ice kicking in, I had a little EV range left after that. Others drove a pure "city route" and got over 15 miles.
    Very quiet, pretty typical of the Gen III.
    Latest word is 2012.
    Prototype battery pack is a LiION main HV pack, and two LiION EV sub-packs. Charging charges the main pack first (to run ECUs), then each sub-pack separately, then tops off the main pack at the end of the cycle. It is 345.6V vs 201.6V in the Gen III. It is a 5.2 kWh battery. It can be charged from standard 110V in about 3 hours currently with plans to have a 220V that'll cut the time in half.
     
  17. AndrewBissell

    AndrewBissell Member

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    Prius Plug-in Hybrid Pre-Orders are now open for 15 US states. Delivery is projected spring 2012.

    2012 Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid Registration
    Sign up to be the first to order the new 2012 Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid on the official Toyota registration page.
    2012 Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid Registration

    Available in: Arizona, California, Connecticut, Hawaii,* Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia and Washington. All US dealers will be trained in servicing so you could buy in one of those states and take Prius PHV home.

    I guess if you live in or close to these states, and you might want a Prius PHV this is the moment to register. You'll have to decide by late 2011. Very similar to the Nissan LEAF process as far as I see.
     
  18. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    Green Car Congress: Report: Toyota to make plug-in capability standard on Prius models debuting in 2014

    So all will be plug-in... that's quite a step for Toyota.
     
  19. EVNow

    EVNow Active Member

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