Plus points for the Prius

2012 Toyota Prius+ (Prius Plus)

2012 Toyota Prius+ (Prius Plus)

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By Toyota’s own admission, the Prius name is a bigger brand in terms of green credentials even than the company itself, so expanding the Prius range is the sensible thing to do.

Toyota has spotted a gap in the market for a seven-seat, sub-100g/km car – particularly for fleet buyers like car hire companies – and the Prius+ is their attempt to fill it.

The lower of the two available trim levels, T4, sits at 96g/km and is expected to take around 70 per cent of sales ahead of the 101g/km T Spirit

Even though it works in exactly the same way, the new model doesn’t quite use the same Hybrid Synergy Drive system as the common-or-garden five-seat Prius, because in the latter, the under-boot nickel metal hydride (NiMH) battery pack raises the load bay and means that a third row of seats is not an option.

Read our full road test report in this week’s edition, out now.