LeasePlan UK has started a trial of the
production prototype Toyota Prius Plug-in hybrid, which will launch
in the autumn of 2012.
The UK division of LeasePlan will be the
first leasing company in the country to try the prototype and use
of the vehicle will enable LeasePlan to undertake one week of
internal tests, including residual value and on-road performance
assessments, before making it available to clients to try.
The Prius Plug-in hybrid can be driven for
approximately 14 miles on electric power alone after a charge from
a normal house-hold plug, taking approximately 90 minutes,
according to manufacturers. Once the Prius has reached the limits
of its electric range it switches to its full hybrid system using
the electric motor and petrol engine.
David Brennan, managing director of
LeasePlan UK, said: “We believe it is important for our team to
gain first-hand experience of new green vehicles to ensure we can
deliver the best advice to our customers.
“We have enjoyed a longstanding partnership
with Toyota, and we are all excited to see what this innovative new
model can bring to the table.”
The new Prius model will feature a high
capacity rechargeable lithium-ion battery and a 1.8litre petrol
engine. Combined CO2 emissions are predicted to be 49g/km with
combined fuel consumption of 134.5mpg.
Ewan Shepherd, general manager of Toyota
Fleet, said: “The technology provides all the benefits of an
electric vehicle, but without the downsides of limited performance
or driving range.”