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How The 2025 Toyota GR Prius Could Seriously Shake Up The EV Market

Key Takeaways

  • The new 2025 Toyota GR Prius is set to make waves in the EV market, transforming the once dull and unexciting Prius into a desirable and attractive car with great acceleration and horsepower.
  • With the introduction of the Toyota Gazoo Prius 24h Le Mans Centennial GR Edition concept car, Toyota aims to give the Prius an X-factor, enhancing its performance and making it lighter, faster, and more visually appealing.
  • Toyota’s investment in renewable technology and hybrid racing indicates that a production version of the hot hatch Prius GR could be in the works, which would further shake up the EV market and build upon the legacy and innovation of the Prius brand.

The new 2025 Toyota GR Prius will make waves in the EV market. But the name Toyota Prius and making waves were not always used in the same sentence.

The first generation Prius was launched in ’97. It was the best of cars, it was the worst of cars. Toyota’s Prius was the new dawn in motoring, a way to save the planet, a bridge from fossil to renewable energy motoring. It was all that. Also, it was the darling of the climate-conscious motorist, from celebs to working people. But, the Prius did not penetrate the market beyond the greenies. Why?

The first Toyota Prius was the sensible shoes of motoring. As a Toyota, it was well-made, but there was nothing attractive or exciting about it. It was slow, expensive, and not so much ugly as offensively bland. The Prius looked like the unfortunate offspring of a microwave oven and a tropical fish aquarium.

Generations of Prius followed generations, updating the tech, tweaking the looks, but keeping the bland firmly in place.

It took Tesla’s Roadster to show the world in 2008 that electric/electrified vehicles could be sexy. It took Toyota another fifteen years to realize it could do the same. But once they did, they pulled out all the stops.

Related: Here’s Why Most Automakers Have SUVs In Their EV Lineup

A New Dawn – The Toyota Prius 2023


Late in 2022, thousands of dedicated gearheads fired up their browsers and went: “Wow!”

It was the launch of the 2023 Prius and Toyota had finally allowed Cinderella to go to the party.

It looked great, had plenty of horsepower, was fast, and offered great acceleration. The new generation Prius was a desirable car in its own right.

The 2023 Prius came in two versions: the normal hybrid and the plug-in hybrid (PHEV). The former had close to 200 hp and can go 0 – 60 in around 7.0 seconds. The PHEV was called the Prime, and it had 220 horses, and it could get to 60 mph in 6.6 seconds.

This was an affordable hybrid that turned heads in the street. The fact that it was environmentally friendly, and a Toyota, only added icing to the cake.

But the new Prius is a compact suburban hatchback that has to compete with a market saturated with similar cars, many of which are also electrified. Cars such as the Chevy EUV Bolt, Mini Electric, and KIA Niro Hybrid are all great options, and they directly compete with the ’23 Prius.

Toyota had already transformed the Prius to where it can compete. It now needed something else to lift it above the crowd. It needed the X-factor.

Toyota Gazoo Prius 24h Le Mans Centennial GR Edition

Toyota Prius GR Rear quarter

The X-factor is the Toyota Gazoo Prius 24h Le Mans Centennial GR Edition concept car. Gazoo Racing is the motorsport division of Toyota and also develops technologies for the GR performance cars.

Normally, concept cars are eye candies. They are beautiful to look at, but you would not want to drive one. The wheels are too big, the roof is too low, and the doors will be difficult to get into. There is always something.

But the Prius GR looks right. You can get in and take it around the track or to the mall. The modifications look great, but they are real. They will make the normal Prius lighter, faster, and give it better handling. It also makes the Prius a thing of beauty and gives it street cred.

Gazoo Racing improved the aerodynamics and traction with slick performance parts like side skirts, canards, a rear diffuser, and a large rear wing. Weight is cut with a carbon fiber hood.

You get better contact with the road via wide-track suspension, 235/50R18-inch tires, and cutting-edge aerodynamic wheels.

The only really cosmetic additions are the honeycomb carbon grille, GR decal, and because it is Le Mans, multi headlamps in the bumper.

Details about the interior are sparse but appear to carry on the racing theme. The seats, for example, are Supra-style buckets. The GR does still have the excellent large infotainment screen of the base model.

Hot Hybrid Power From Racing Success

Toyota GR010 Hypercar at Le Mans

Visually, the GR is inspired by the GR0101 Hybrid which has dominated its class in endurance racing for several years. Racing is the testbed for the street, and Toyota will almost certainly put a very hot hybrid in the GR.

With the straight hybrid Prius making 194/196hp (FWD/AWD), and the Prius Prime PHEV 220 hp, Toyota already has quite a lot of power to choose from for the GR. But the assumption is that it will be a PHEV, so a bigger battery and more horses.

That is if they decide to make a production version of the GR.

A Production Hot Hatch Prius

Red 2023 Toyota Prius Prime XSE parked outdoors

Will they or won’t they make a hot hatch Prius production car? It is impossible to guess Toyota’s strategy in the short to medium term. But the GR will make sense as a production model for several reasons.

Toyota is investing heavily in renewable technology, including solid-state batteries, and hydrogen power. PHEV technology is currently a strong pillar in the company’s investment strategy.

It is investing a lot of money in hybrid racing technology. The only reason for a car manufacturing company to invest in racing is to sell more cars. They can achieve that by using success on the track to build their brand. The next step is to incorporate the technology thus developed into production cars.

Toyota already has several similar-sized and priced hybrids on the market, including the Corolla Cross, the Camry, the RAV4 and more. So why the Prius?

The Prius brand has a quarter of a century of innovation legacy behind it. Nobody will discard such an asset. The new and vastly improved ’23 Prius models feel more like a brand reboot than a swansong.

Expect further and more detailed appearances of the Prius GR at car shows, but the Le Mans launch was a pretty big statement. Watch this space.

Related: Toyota’s Breakthrough Discovery: How Its Solid-State Batteries Could Reduce Charging And Increase EV Range

Le Mans – The Biggest Stage In Motoring

Le Mans Centenary poster
Le Mans

Toyota unveiled the 2025 Prius GR concept car at the Le Mans 24 Hours race in June. There is no bigger stage in performance motoring than Le Mans, especially this year with the centenary race. It is the perfect launch pad to take a family car to another level.

Le Mans is the single biggest racing event in the world. Rivalries between manufacturers, teams, and drivers are the stuff of legend. The Steve McQueen classic Le Mans and Ford Vs Ferrari pay homage to this.

Would The Toyota Prius GR Shake Up The EV market?

2023 Toyota Prius 24h Le Mans Centennial GR Edition details

The Toyota Prius GR will most certainly shake up the EV market. Like it or not, the future of motoring will not be traditional internal combustion (ICE). There are three main likely options to replace ICE: battery power, hydrogen fuel cell, and hybrid.

Battery power is developing fast, but there is still range anxiety. People are concerned they will run out of juice. Charging infrastructure is also limited outside urban areas.

Hydrogen shows a lot of promise, but it is the least mature and will take the longest to realize.

Hybrid power is well-developed, and it needs no additional infrastructure. The technology is closest to ICE in the way it is used, and has no range issues, so adoption by traditional ICE drivers will be the smoothest road.

The Prius is a familiar brand. It used to be a dull car, but suddenly it has gained major brand appeal.

If you now add a premium-priced, hot hatch to this brand, Prius will seriously shake up the EV market.

This article was originally published by a www.hotcars.com . Read the Original article here. .

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