2016 Toyota Prius Windtunnel
Once we regained our composure after seeing the wild, Mirai-like 2016 Toyota Prius revealed for the first time last month, we could hear Toyota telling us that its cash-cow hybrid would be better than ever. Today the Japanese automaker announced details on the extensive improvements we’ll see on the 2016 Toyota Prius, including its confirmed 10 percent higher fuel-efficiency. Thanks to slashing weight, reducing mechanical losses, increasing thermal efficiency, and revising its transaxle and electric motor, the 2016 Toyota Prius promises a fuel-economy rating as high as 55 mpg. An Eco model, likely with an upgraded battery pack, will be even more efficient. The current Toyota Prius is rated for 51/48/50 mpg city/highway/combined. Keeping that heat Advances start with the 2016 Toyota Prius’ 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine, which now manages 40 percent thermal efficiency (the current Prius boasts 38.5 percent). The increases allow the Prius to retain heat and therefore energy more effectively, as a result of a redesigned air-intake port, exhaust gas recirculation system, and redesigned coolant passages. Toyota also upgraded the Prius’ heating capability, with an exhaust heat recirculation system that’s now smaller, active grille shutters to respond to changing exterior temperatures, and an engine coolant selector valve to combat cold weather conditions.
2016 Toyota Prius Battery
Reduced weight, better mechanical efficiency, new batteries We know that the car’s Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) platform would cut weight, but these gains are magnified in the 2016 Toyota Prius by the use of a redesigned transaxle and electric motor. Now smaller and lighter, the pair also now operates with 20 percent less mechanical loss with reduced friction. On top of this, the transaxle’s old planetary gear set is replaced with a parallel gear set in the reduction gear for further friction reductions.
2016 Toyota Prius Transaxle Cutaway
The new Prius will have two available battery packs — a new nickel-metal hydride unit as well as a new lithium-ion unit — although it isn’t yet clear which models will get which batteries. Most likely the base model will get the nickel-metal hydride unit, while the lithium-ion battery could end up in either Eco or future plug-in hybrid models. Both batteries have been optimized for increased energy density, meaning the battery can now be located underneath the rear seat, allowing for increased cargo capacity.
2016 Toyota Prius Structure 1
New TNGA platform adds rigidity, upgraded suspension Every Prius thus far has disappointed us with wallowy handling, but Toyota says there are big changes this time around. A new double-wishbone rear suspension and lower center of gravity (in part a product of the new battery positioning) should help. And the TNGA architecture is not only lighter, but more than 60 percent more torsionally rigid than the last Prius. Toyota says that this is a result of Laser Screw Welding, new adhesives and frame structures, and more high-strength steel. Acceleration and responsiveness at low rpm are said to improve thanks to new hybrid engine software, while a hydraulic booster for the regenerative braking system supposedly reduces noise and improves brake feel. More to come Toyota says that we’ll know more about the 2016 Toyota Prius exact power output and fuel-efficiency down the line, but for now it is contending that it is the most efficient vehicle on the market without a plug. That fact, combined with its cachet, a revised interior with new tech, and a suit of active safety features, means the 2016 Toyota Prius could be an even bigger hit than before.