2012 Toyota Vitz/Yaris2012 Toyota Vitz/Yaris – Click above for image gallery

Toyota has big plans to wade into the hybridized B-segment in Europe, and it looks like we may get a peek at the automaker's first effort in that department at the Geneva Motor Show. The Japanese manufacturer has confirmed that it will unveil its Yaris HSD Concept in March. The company is keeping the details of the concept to itself for the time being, so there's little information on what kind of powertrain or fuel economy the car will boast when it takes a bow next month. Toyota did say that the Yaris HSD Concept will wear some very hybrid-specific design cues, so expect more than a little Prius influence outside.

While the B-segment is one of the hottest auto markets in Europe, Toyota may be facing a bit of an uphill battle with the notion of a hybrid Yaris. Buyers in the Old Country have been notoriously cold toward gasoline hybrids due to the popularity of high-efficiency diesel engines. Combine that hurdle with the difficulty of making a hybrid drivetrain affordable and Toyota will have to pull some pretty impressive tricks to make this car a viable competitor in Europe. That doesn't mean we can't wait to see it on the stage in Geneva, though. Hit the jump for the press release.


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[Source: Toyota]
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04/02/2011

Reinforcing its conviction that full hybrid technology is the key to sustainable mobility in the future, Toyota's 2011 Geneva Motor Show stand will be dedicated to the company's range of sophisticated Hybrid Synergy Drive® technologies. These include full Hybrid Vehicles (HV), Plug-in Hybrid Vehicles (PHV), Electric Vehicles (EV), and

Fuel Cell Hybrid Vehicles (FCHV) on display.

Making its world debut at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show, the Yaris HSD concept anticipates Toyota's intention to bring full hybrid technology to the B segment, the biggest volume segment in Europe. This represents the next step in Toyota's full hybrid roll-out strategy in Europe. Incorporating several hybrid-specific styling cues, the Yaris HSD concept introduces a new, forward-looking design execution.

The Prius+, also debuting at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show, is a further expansion of the Prius family. The Prius+ is the first car to offer European customers the versatility of 7 seats combined with a full hybrid powertrain. As its name suggests, the Prius+ provides a significant increase in space and passenger accommodation, while sacrificing none of the traditional attributes found in the Prius DNA, such as the lowest fuel consumption of any 7-seat MPV on the market.