ANNAPOLIS – Toyota showed off a prototype of its new Prius Plug-in Hybrid to members of the House Environmental Matters Committee on Tuesday after a meeting.
The new Plug-in Hybrid can run 15 miles on all electrical power before shifting over to operate as a hybrid car, getting 50 miles per gallon.
“The actual model will be in Maryland dealerships in March,” said Erik Kirkhorn, director of State Government Affairs for Toyota Motor North America, Inc.
Del. H. Wayne Norman Jr, R-Harford, asked about the possibility of making a hybrid version of some of Toyota’s trucks, including the Tundra and Tacoma.
Toyota began collaborating with Ford a few months ago on hybrid trucks, Kirkhorn said.
The major problem with creating hybrid trucks is the prospect of the vehicles being used for heavy duty purposes, such as to pull big loads. Hybrid trucks would be meant mainly for lighter duty.
We will also be introducing the first all-electric SUV this summer, Kirkhorn said.
The sale of hybrid cars is on the rise, expanding to a total of about 3.3 million purchased worldwide, with around 1.45 million purchased in the United States alone.
After the meeting delegates had the option of viewing and asking questions about the new Prius, which was parked in a garage at the House of Delegates building.