AutoExpress magazine in the UK has a report in this week's issue about the next generation Toyota Prius. They are reporting that the new Prius will be switching from nickel metal hydride batteries to lithium ion batteries that have greater capacity in an even smaller size. With the smaller package, interior room of the new car should be improved, especially in the back seat. The improved power output of the lithium batteries will allow the car to run on electrons-only more often in urban traffic.
According to the magazine, Toyota engineers are targeting a mileage rating of 113 mpg, with improved 0-60 mph acceleration of less than 10 seconds. The internal combustion part of the drive train is reported to be a new turbocharged 1.8L lean burn four cylinder. The car may even get factory plug-in capability when it goes on sale in 2009 and now that GM has announced their intention to offer a plug-in hybrid Saturn Vue, this one may be a certainty. The styling is also reported to be revamped, with a spy photo in the print version of the magazine.