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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: March 1, 2011 @ 10:29 am

    Geneva Motor show live: Toyota’s new Yaris hybrid

    Michael McAleer

    Toyota will offer a hybrid version of the next generation Yaris range next year. It’s just one of a host of new model due in 2012, that includes a hybrid seven-seater people carrier under the Prius nameplate, and it’s long-awaited return to the sports car market with the impressive looking FT-86. These will be followed later by an electric version of the IQ city car, which will offer a range of 105km on a single charge.

    The brand is reporting strong results in the latest quality ratings and reliability surveys, particularly in Germany and is determined to repair any reputational damage from last year’s recalls. The fact the firm has been cleared of any electrical problems with braking issues by the US transport safety authority, NTHSA, is further proof, says the brand’s executives, that there is no fundamental problems with the Toyota range.

    The new Yaris is shown as a concept, but the car will enter production in France early next year. It follows on from the introduction of a hybrid version of Auris, due for Irish launch in autumn this year and we can expect hybrid variants of all the model range in the coming years.

    For all the focus on hybrid and electric power, the star of the Toyota stand lies to the side of the main stage. It’s the FT-86, due for sale late next year and truly one of the most beautiful cars at the show. While it still carries the “concept” tagline, the word is that this is as close to production as the concept term can come. We can’t wait.


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