In the future, we'll eat all our meals from toothpaste tubes, everyone will be beautiful and healthy, and we won't need cars, what with the proliferation of nuclear-powered jet packs. Prediction is such thorny business, though Toyota isn't making such a fantastical claim by suggesting that each of its vehicles will have a hybrid option available by 2020. Wired's blog seems to agree that by 2020, hybrids will have proliferated like rabbits, and we'll be awash in electron propulsion systems.
We still feel a little cheated that eight years into the 21st century, we still don't have all those things promised to us fifty years ago, but at least automakers are hard at work pushing alternative systems toward viability. Justin Ward, a manager at the Toyota Technical Center overseeing advanced powertrain programs, told a Management Briefing Seminar in Traverse city that work continues on fuel cells to overcome challenges like climate extremes and range. Battery technology, too, will continue to advance, making the current Hybrid Synergy Drive even more efficient. Toyota is still holding off on diesels, and plug-ins present some issues when you consider where that electricity is generated, so it's looking like Toyota will continue to develop its fuel cell technology for the long term and bolster its hybrid offerings in the near future.
[Source: Auto News - sub req. Photo: itd.idaho.gov]