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Toyota Prius C launches with TRD Sporty options.

Tue, 27 Dec 2011 00:00:00 -0800

The Toyota Aqua (aka Prius C) with TRD extras

The Toyota Prius C has launched in Japan (as the Toyota Aqua) with a host of TRD sporty options on offer.

We first had concrete news on the compact Prius – the Toyota Prius C – when a brochure leaked out ahead of a début at the Tokyo Motor Show. And if you take the ‘C’ as compact, that’s exactly what you get – a Prius on a boil wash.

The Prius C seems to have the same generic ‘Eco’ styling the Prius has embraced, just in a smaller package. And Toyota may be on to a winner as car buyers downsize, although we are beginning to wonder if Toyota actually see the home market as the key to the success of the Prius C (where it will be called the Toyota Aqua).

Toyota are expecting sales of 12,000 Aquas a month in Japan, hoping to steal sales from the hybrid Honda Fit, which in turn has been eating in to sales of the full size Prius in Japan. That could have something to do with a domestic price hike for the Prius, but is also about consumers looking to downsize.

Whether American car buyers will see something as small as the Prius C as a step too far remains to be seen, and Toyota has no plans to bring the Prius C to Europe, and will instead launch the Yaris Hybrid in to the same market segment.

And maybe we’ll see a raft of Toyota TRD racing bolt-ons for the Yaris Hybrid when that arrives, emulating what TRD has revealed for the Prius C in Japan. There’s an exterior package with new front apron with extra vents and LEDs, side skirts, roof spoiler and a rear apron with diffuser.

Under the skin there are ‘performance’ mods, but not for performance. There’s a sports exhaust system with chrome tail pipes, new springs and shockers and some big alloys.

Sadly, whatever TRD toys are added, the Prius C will never be ‘Sporty’.


By Cars UK