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Over at the Toyota Open Road blog, Toyota's American Communications boss Irv Miller has a new post talking about hybrid battery supplies. As we reported yesterday, May sales of the Prius were down 40 percent compared to the previous May. It's not because people suddenly didn't want Priuses anymore, especially with gas at $4/gallon. In fact exactly the opposite is true. So many people have wanted Priuses through the first four months of the year, that there simply weren't any more to be had. Thos

Toyota today released further details about one of its new battery plants in Japan. The plant, to be operated by Panasonic EV Energy (the joint venture between Toyota and Panasonic), is planned to be constructed in Taiwa-cho, Kurokawa-gun, Miyagi Prefecture north of Tokyo. The $290 million plant is expected to start turning out 100,000 nickel metal hydride batteries a year in early 2010. Eventually it will ramp up to twice that number to help supply the needs of the one million hybrids that Toyo