I have long believed the Toyota Prius is a double edged sword for the auto industry.
On one hand, the fact it became the first hybrid to connect with the general public shows Americans are ready to embrace gas-electric vehicles. On the other hand, the dominance of the Prius among hybrids means many people saw it as the only gas-electric car worth considering. Some of that was brought on by competitors who rolled out hybrids that paled in comparison to the Prius.
That is about to change and Toyota is ready for the fight.
Today, Toyota takes the wraps off the new Prius and many in the auto industry will be watching to see if it can remain king of the hybrid hill.
With a refined interior, improved mileage (51 city/48 highway), and more features this re-designed Prius is a substantial improvement over the last generation of the car. It is evolving into a car people will drive for the mileage, while also enjoying the ride and interior. That was not the case with the current Prius which has a nice, but not exciting interior. As a neighbor of mine who owns a Prius likes to say in a very bland manner, "It gets me around town."