Toyota Goes Electric with New Prius Hybrid Vehicle

Aug 22, 2000, 01:00 ET from Toyota of Naperville

    CHICAGO, Aug. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Eddie and Cindy Bedford of Naperville are
 doing their part to help the environment... by driving a car.  The Bedfords
 were selected by Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. (TMS) as a test family for
 the new Toyota Prius, the new gasoline/electric hybrid vehicle.
     "Cindy Bedford was an interesting choice," explains Toyota of Naperville
 Internet Sales Manager, Jay Jones.  "She's a schoolteacher, and she used her
 Prius to teach her students about advancements in new, environment-friendly
     The Prius retails for $20,450.  It can be purchased over the Internet by
 logging on to and following the link to .
 Toyota dealerships handle the transactions.
     "We have a Prius available for test drives.  Toyota of Naperville has sold
 5 so far," says Jones.  "The people who buy them love them."  TMS national
 manager for Prius marketing, Mark Amstock, adds, "We've pointed out that the
 vehicle dispels many of the myths of 'environmental vehicles' because it
 requires no change of lifestyle for the owner."
     One thing owners would have to get used to is filling up their gas tanks
 less frequently.  The Prius gets 45 miles per gallon on the highway, and 52
 mpg in the city.  The vehicle maintains optimum fuel efficiency by using the
 technologically-advanced, computer-actuated Toyota Hybrid System.  Based on
 Japanese standards, this system automatically switches between gasoline and
 electric power modes -- or a combination of both.  Capable of speeds over
 80 mph, the Prius derives propulsion from a low-emission, highly-efficient
 1.5 liter, 58 hp gasoline engine and a permanent magnet electric motor
 producing a maximum 40 hp.  The Prius never needs charging.  It automatically
 recharges its on-board battery pack during braking and deceleration, making it
 ideal for urban stop-and-go driving.
     "Another benefit to driving a Prius is that you can get a tax deduction,"
 says Jones.  "Because of the incredible fuel economy and ultra-low emissions,
 the federal government allows a qualified clean air deduction up to $2,000."
     On sale in Japan since 1997, the Prius has been a sales success with more
 than 25,000 vehicles on the road to date.  The Chicago region ranks third in
 the nation for Prius orders.
     For more information, contact: Jay Jones, Internet Sales Manager of Toyota
 of Naperville, 630-357-1578.

SOURCE Toyota of Naperville