Automotive News is reporting that a year or two after the next generation Toyota Prius
debuts in 2009, a wagon variant will be introduced. Parly due to its success as a taxi vehicle, the next Prius is expected to grow in size to comfortably accommodate three adults in the back seat, while a wagon model is hoped to attract more commercial customers looking for a green delivery vehicle that may save on fuel costs. Both the first- and second-gen Priuses have been doing taxi duty for years now and their
packs have been proven to take the punishment of near constant use. The third gen car will use a new nickel metal hydride battery pack, which is the same type used in the current car. Toyota has laid to rest
that it may debut a new lithium-ion battery pack in the third gen Prius, and instead appears to be
saving that for a low-volume Lexus hybrid
due to its cost. Either way, the third gen Prius is sure to be a hit everywhere its sold, with more room, more power and better
. Adding a wagon to the lineup will only improve its appeal.
[Source: Automotive News, sub. req'd]