Track-Tested Tech Heading to the Next Prius

Posted by at 11:20 am on November 10, 2014

The next-generation Toyota Prius hybrid, due next year, will pull technology straight from the endurance racing circuit.

Toyota Motor Corp., which leads this season’s manufacturers’ championship, is testing technology to be used in the Prius in its high-performance TS040 Hybrid Le Mans racer.

Microchips and micro controllers, are the parts heading from racing to the Prius. The components are preproduction prototypes being tested for endurance over extended periods under extreme conditions.

A main goal of the technology is to improve fuel efficiency.

That is critical to track success under revised FIA World Endurance Championship rules, which put a premium on fuel economy.

Toyota re-engineered its car for the 2014 season to cut fuel consumption 25 percent from the 2013 car, the TS030. The new car, the TS040, also gets a four-wheel-drive hybrid drivetrain.

Despite using less fuel, the TS040 also achieves higher horsepower: 1,000 hp compared with the TS030’s 750 hp.


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