Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid eligible for up to £5000 UK Government subsidy

Have you heard the news today? One of the biggest stories is the announcement of the cars that qualify for the Government’s ultra-low carbon vehicle grant scheme, including the Prius Plug-in Hybrid concept.

Toyota Prius PHV concept

The Department for Transport (DfT) and the Office for Low Emission Vehicles have announced the Prius Plug-in Hybrid (PHV) concept, which is currently undergoing a demonstration leasing programme in London, meets its criteria for the Plug-in Car Grant. This means that we expect the full production version to receive up to £5000 towards its cost when it goes on sale in 2012.

Jon Williams, Toyota Managing Director, said: “I welcome today’s announcement which demonstrates that Toyota’s advanced, user friendly plug-in technology is recognised as having significant potential to make a valuable contribution to the UK’s low carbon transport strategy.

“Toyota is committed to developing sustainable low emissions mobility and Prius Plug-in Hybrid marks an important step in our environmental leadership, delivering exceptional emissions and fuel performance in urban driving.

“This consumer incentive scheme will further strengthen the case for Prius Plug-in Hybrid among private and fleet owners, following the model’s market introduction in 2012.”

Toyota Prius PHV with electric car recharging point

Prius Plug-in Hybrid concept is equipped with a compact and powerful lithium-ion battery that enables the car to run on electric power alone (EV mode) for up to 12.5 miles, and at speeds up to 62mph, with zero fuel consumption. What’s more, no emissions are produced through the car’s exhaust while it is being driven in EV mode.

A further benefit of the hybrid system is that, once battery power has been used up, the car switches automatically to its petrol-hybrid engine, removing the “range anxiety” associated with all-electric vehicles.

Thanks to its ability to run further in EV mode, the Prius Plug-in Hybrid concept achieves exceptional combined cycle fuel efficiency, with an official 108.6mpg and CO2 emissions of 59g/km (European homologation combined cycle).

Prius Plug-in’s environmental performance is further strengthened by the fact that, compared to diesel cars, it emits much less NOx and no particulates. And when running on its electric motor alone – in EV mode – it produces no CO2 or NOx.

Prius Plug-in Hybrid concept

Please note that CO2 emissions of Prius Plug-in Hybrid are measured according to the new official international regulations for plug-in hybrid electric powertrains, as adopted by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe.

To find out more about the Prius Plug-in Hybrid concept leasing programme that is currently underway in the UK, click here.

Update 17/3/11: You can register your interest and sign up for the latest news on Prius Plug-in Hybrid here.

Comments (16)

  1. how about a car that drives like a jag the big soviegn or i had a celiac on a g reg that couldn’t handle too good as on that year they softened the suspension ,but to drive it it was zoo smooth and beautiful to drive with hardly any bumps felt from the road

  2. I was considering to exchange my 2nd gen 2005 prius to 3rd gen 2009 prius. A typical 1-1.5 year old the 3rd gen on the used car market now around 18K BUT… with the introduction of plug-in model next year and the 5K grant by goverment, I assume that the 3rd gen prius will loose more value. There is no price tag for the new plug-in prius yet but its been predicted as around 22-24K. So with the grant probably the plug in version would be around 18-19K! So this will effect the second hand market of the 3rd gen non-plug-in prices a lot.. Will the Toyoto continue to produce the non-plugin version after the introduction of plug-in version? Should I wait to upgrade my prius to a brand new plug in prius till next year then?

    1. Hi RK,

      Great to hear that you’re considering the Prius Plug-in Hybrid as your next car.

      The Prius Plug-in Hybrid will be sold alongside the current third generation Prius when it arrives in the UK in next year.

      You can now sign up to receive the latest news on Prius Plug-in Hybrid by clicking here.

  3. as hybrid market is on apex, but is there some drawbacks in these cars, coz every company out there says its good. But honestly wat we get when we spend lot of money on hybrid cars.Does the engine stand the pressure which gas engines can handle.

  4. I enjoy reading all the Toyota ranges.

    I like both the Avensis and Yaris range, because those cars are so expensive, but their are so attractive.

    I hope to buy the Avensis Toyota, because I see myself driving it and it is total ideal for my family as well.

  5. I question the benefit of the proposed new plug in hybrid on the basis that UP TO 12.5 miles on the battery is hardly worth the extra weight and probable extra cost. The main advantage to me of the current Prius is its independence from plug in charging. I am cynical in that I believe Toyota are cashing in on the £5,000 government rebate. Finally no one in the media have commented on the clear disadvantage of plug in charging. THAT IS THE VULNERABILITY TO HAVING THE CABLE DISCONNECTED BY THE MINDLESS URBAN YOBS WHO FREQUENT THIS PLANET. To get back to your car at the end of the working day to find the cable on the floor and not enough charge to get you home, is not something I would want to contemplate. Clearly for the Prius owner this would not be a problem even in its plug in guise, however for standard electric cars, I do not see an easy answer to this potential problem. Maybe Toyota should market the new plug in Prius as the car that WILL get you home at the end of the day when other electric cars have been vandalised.

  6. I am considering changing my petrol BMW 5 series estate for a diesel version, the new BMW 520D does 56mpg. Ho wever I am impressed by the Prius and like the technology. Will the existing model qualify for the new grant (£5000) introduced this year, if so it will be a seious contender.

    1. Hi Barry,

      Due to its low emissions the current third generation Prius benefits from zero annual vehicle tax (VED) and 100% discount from the London Congestion Charge. However, it doesn’t qualify for the new Plug-in Car Grant, which is only available for cars that meet a strict ultra-low emissions criteria.

      However, the Prius Plug-in Hybrid concept currently being trialled in the UK does meet the requirements and therefore we expect that the final production version will be eligible for the Plug-in Car Grant when it goes on sale next year.

      Don’t forget, of course, that the current Prius offers 72.4mpg (official combined cycle with 15-inch wheels), so it already offers low ownership costs.

      For further information about the Plug-in Car Grant, including a list of all eligible vehicles, click here. The full criteria for the Grant can be found by clicking here.


  7. Dear Mr Pang,

    we are thinking of buying a Prius but with the news of the Plug-in version being released in 2012 is it worth waiting? Will there be a massive price difference between the two versions?

    When in 2012 is the planned release date?

    Yours Aye


    1. Hi Chris,

      Thanks for your question.

      The exact launch date is yet to be confirmed, hopefully it will be sooner rather than later. We don’t expect there to be a massive price difference as we aim to offer a valuable proposition for the Prius Plug-in Hybrid.

      Of course you will also benefit from low cost of ownership, and since the Prius Plug-in Hybrid concept qualifies for the new £5,000 Plug-in Car Grant, we expect the full production model to be eligible also.

      Hope that answers your questions.

  8. Hi, I am just wondering where Prius is produced? From which country is UK importing the Prius? Is Toyota actually the first company that came up with the hybrid synergie drive technology?

    1. Hi,

      All of the Prius imported by Toyota for the UK are built in Japan in our Tsutsumi factory. Click here for further information on how the Prius is designed, built, and recycled.

      In regards to your second question, Toyota started development of hybrid technology in 1969, and we’re the first manufacturer to bring hybrids to the mass market when the first generation Prius was launch in Japan in 1997.

      Hope this answers your questions.


  9. Has this Prius got a normal handbrake and not that awful American variant footbrake? I like to rest my left foot against a flat surface and the footbrake of the model I tested basically got in the way. Has Toyota made the car more pleasing to their British clientele?

    1. Hi Mr. Crozier,

      Thanks for your question.

      The full and final production specification for Prius Plug-in Hybrid has yet to be confirmed but we can tell you that the car we drove at the launch of the UK lease trial programme had a footbrake, as does the current third generation Prius.

      Toyota is a global manufacturing company, and many cars are sold in a number of different markets. Prius is one of Toyota’s environmental flagship models, its advanced Hybrid Synergy Drive technology and low emissions is something we wish to share on a global level, therefore it is designed for global markets.

      However, Toyota has a philosophy of Kaizen (meaning continuous improvement) so we will feed back your comments for consideration for future generations of Prius.

      1. I rather like the foot operated handbrake as it gives more room between the two front seats and it’s also easier to use once you’re used to it.

        Regarding the Prius Plug In, are there any updates on the UK release date? I’ve signed up for updates but had nothing as yet – probably because there’s nothing to report, but I’m keen to replace my existing Prius with a plug in.

        Any news or updates gratefully received.

        1. Hi Grumpy Cabbie,

          I can tell you are as excited as us about the launch of Prius Plug-in Hybrid. The car will be on sale in 2012, however an exact launch date is yet to be confirmed.

          We will be sure to notify you when we have more news, but until then we must all sit tight!


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