In a recent interview with the New York Times, Toyota?s president of sales in the US, James E. Lentz, said that he has been actively pushing for a separate Prius brand. Lentz?s logic is that with Toyota?s efforts to lead the way with hybrid vehicles, it would be worth launching a whole new brand to make the most of it.
This sort of thing certainly isn?t beyond Toyota, and a precedent has been set for the brand twice already with Lexus and ? in the US ? Scion. Lentz says the main difference with the Prius badge is that, unlike Lexus and Scion, it would be sold in Toyota dealerships alongside regular Toyota vehicles.
Lentz has presented the idea of a Yaris-sized hybrid, as well as a ?Prius on steroids?. A performance Prius? Cripes. We?d certainly be interested to see what Toyota can do to sport-up the Prius (there's some decidedly shoddy aftermarket efforts?)