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A mini road course based on the Monopoly board game will be set up, which will take up 30,000 square feet of space. Professional drivers will take auto show visitors on a ride through an eco-friendly course inspired by the Monopoly game board. And don’t worry about being stuck with the lame shoe game piece – you’ll be driven along the course in either a Prius V wagon, a Camry Hybrid or a Highlander Hybrid. Along the way, players will learn about the features of Toyota hybrid vehicles, as well as take in iconic Monopoly landmarks and meet the Mr. Monopoly character.
“By incorporating design elements from the game into the Toyota Hybrid MONOPOLY Ride Experience, we are able to present the Toyota Hybrid Synergy Drive experience in a fun and unexpected way,” said Keith Dahl, Toyota’s National Engagement Marketing Manager. “This exhibit really gives fans of the game an innovative way to interact with our hybrid models.”
The 2012 Chicago Auto Show takes place February 8 to 19, and if you get a chance to go, it sounds like it’ll be worth your time to drop by Toyota’s game display.
Sales of the Prius in 2011 are expected to surpass even the number sold in 2010 says Toyota, despite the disastrous earthquake in Japan that limited production of the popular hybrid.
Toyota has been shifting all its resources to ensure production of its hybrid model is top priority after hitting a 61-percent drop in June of Prius deliveries – the lowest since September 2004. Prior to the earthquake, Toyota anticipated sales of the Prius to leap their record 2007 year of 181,221; though that may be out of reach now, Toyota is confident they’ll surpass the 2010 sales figure of 140,928.
Currently, demand is greater than supply of the Prius, with many dealerships in America having a waiting list of customers. With the average fuel cost going up, demand for hybrid models has also been going up.
More importantly for 2012 and beyond, Toyota will be expanding the Prius line with the addition of the Prius v wagon, subcompact Prius c and the electric plug-in Prius, potentially making it their number-one selling model line within the next decade.
[Source: Automotive News]
Toyota has now expanded its internal investigation over braking issues to cover all hybrid models says a report by the Wall Street Journal. Toyota has already admitted that there was a braking problem with its 2010 Prius model, and according to Japan’s Nikkei News, Toyota is preparing to issue a recall for 270,000 Prius models from the 2010 model year.
Toyota has admitted it knew of a problem that caused a brief loss of braking during the transition from the car’s regenerative braking to its traditional friction braking. Toyota refers to this as “slight unresponsiveness” and says it usually lasts less than a second. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) as well as Japanese authorities have registered over 100 complaints about the car’s brake system, where owners say they experienced a brief loss of braking capability when traveling over bumpy or icy roads. Toyota has said the issue has been solved on all models produced since late January but no recall has been ordered for models built before that time.
The 2010 Prius model was not covered under the previous recall of 2.3 million vehicles for sticking accelerators or “unintended acceleration.” Those recalled vehicles use a brake assembly by Indiana-based CTS Corp, while the 2010 Prius and other hybrid Toyota products use a brake system developed by Denso.
Additional Toyota hybrid models that will now come under investigation include the Highlander hybrid and Camry hybrid. It is not year clear if the investigation will also cover Lexus hybrid models.
With the Prius recall reportedly coming, can recalls for all Toyota hybrids be far behind?
See more Toyota recall news here: Toyota Recall News Hub
[Source: Wall Street Journal]