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Toyota - hybrid vehicles

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Maxed out? sorry, not MAXXED OUT...

Maxed Out? 

Toyota's U.S, chief says still plenty of demand for its hybrid vehicles 

By MARK RECHTIN | AUTOMOTIVE NEWS

AutoWeek | Published 05/08/06, 7:59 am et 

LOS ANGELES -- Is the hybrid boom over? Hardly.

Toyota Prius sales plunged 27.4 percent in April, to 8,234 units, compared to the same month last year. But the problem was limited manufacturing capacity, not lack of consumer demand, said Jim Press, president of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc. In fact, he said, soaring fuel prices have made Toyota's hybrids hotter than ever.

The production start of the Camry Hybrid at the Tsutsumi plant in Japan meant it has had to cut back on building Prius units.

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As for the future, Press said Toyota is short of the engineering resources to accelerate its plans to bring new hybrid models to market.

"Expanding hybrid volume requires increasing the number of vehicles that have the hybrid option available," he said. "That's driven by engineering resources, and it's difficult to accelerate that."

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other 3 headlines on the same page

OTHER STORIES ABOUT THIS AUTOMAKER:

>> Sex scandal puts Toyota in the headlines 

>> Bad transmission fastener can lead to limping '07 Toyota Camry 

>> Avalon shows dent in Toyota quality; fixes sought for 'problematic vehicle' 

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