It’s no secret that Toyota plans on stretching the Prius nameplate, expanding it into a sub-brand with a full model lineup. It turns out that Toyota has high expectations for its future Prius lineup as it believes the hybrids will become its best-selling nameplate in the U.S. by 2020.
“We will end the decade with the Prius being the number one nameplate in the industry,” Bob Carter, Toyota’s group vice president for U.S. sales, told analysts in a conference call yesterday. He went on to say that the Camry, currently Toyota’s top-selling model in the U.S., “will be a close second, and that’s because there will be a drop in Camry sales.”
Right now, Toyota sells just the Prius hatchback, but two more vehicles are set to join the Prius lineup by 2012. Toyota is unveiling a new, larger MPV-style Prius hybrid — reportedly known as the Prius-V — at the Detroit auto show next week, having teased the car a number of times already. The second Prius model confirmed for sale by 2012 is the Prius Plug-in Hybrid — with lithium-ion batteries and a greater electric-only range than the current Prius.
Toyota is also revealing a Prius concept at the Detroit auto show. Toyota hasn’t revealed any further information about the concept just yet, but we’ll know what the concept is by January 10 when Toyota officially pulls the wraps off both the Prius-V and the concept.
Toyota may have high hopes for its Prius lineup, but the hybrids have a long way to go to overtake Camry sales. We’ll know full 2010 sales later today, but through November the Camry outsold the Prius 296,581 to 125,289.