2009 Toyota Prius – Click above for high-res gallery
We knew that Toyota was planning to keep the current Prius around for a little while longer to properly do battle with the new Honda Insight, which costs a few thousand dollars (or a few million yen) less. We assumed that Toyota would at least match the Insight's asking price with its new-old Prius, and now it's official.
According to the Nikkei in Japan (via Bloomberg), the current Prius hybrid will sell for $19,250 (1.89 million yen) in Japan alongside the new 2010 model, which has yet to be priced. For the sake of comparison, the Honda Insight starts at the same 1.89 million yen in Japan and is priced at $19,800 in the U.S. (plus $670 in destination charges).
We've also heard that a new lower-cost hybrid model from Toyota is currently being developed that would be based on Prius underpinnings but sold at a up to a 30-percent discount. So far, Toyota has not indicated that its new/old dual-hybrid strategy will make it to America.