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Toyota Hybrid X Concept - Click above for high-res image gallery

Toyota Hybrid X Concept - click above for high-res image gallery

2010 Toyota Prius - Click above for high-res image gallery

Following last month's news of a Toyota Prius coupe coming to challenge the Honda CR-Z, another Japanese magazine reports that Toyota will use an Italian design firm to style the two-door.

Adding additional fuel to the ongoing speculation that Toyota will produce a sporty coupe version of its world-beating Prius hybrid hatchback is a new report from Japan's Best Car Magazine (via 4 Wheels News) that suggests the new model could be topped with a tailored sheetmetal suit courtesy of a famed Italian designer like Pininfarina or Italdesign Giugiaro.

Automotive News sat down with Kazuo Okamoto, Toyota's executive vice president of R&D, in Geneva to discuss the Prius and the automaker's future hybrid offerings. While the interview was short on details, when AN asked whether or not the Prius could spawn its own brand based on the popularity of the hybrid sedan, Okamoto responded in the typical parsed words of an exec talking to a reporter. "We are studying that, but I can't say what stage of the study we are in." Okamoto went on to say tha