Another Look at the Toyota “1/X” Plug-in Hybrid Car

toyota_ix.jpg

While it debuted at the 2007 Tokyo Motor Show, Toyota showed off its “1/X” plug-in hybrid concept vehicle at the Chicago Auto Show this week. (That’s pronounced “one-Xth” in case you were wondering, although I think “one-stroke-ex” is better.)

Compared to the Prius, Toyota’s gas-electric hybrid, the 1/X is smaller, lighter (by almost a factor of three), has a smaller engine (again by 2/3rd) and uses lithium-ion batteries instead of NiMH. Expect a future Prius to incorporate some of the technologies, but not all—the carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic frame and bio-plastic roof aren’t likely to make it into an affordable production car. The 125 miles-per-gallon performance will take a hit in a heavier car, too, but it’s a step in the right direction.

Oh, the production models will probably have doors, too. That might make them heavier, but it should decrease wind resistance.

Toyota 1/X Plug-In Concept Makes North American Debut At 2008 Chicago Auto Show [GreenCarCongress.com]

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6 Responses to Another Look at the Toyota “1/X” Plug-in Hybrid Car

  1. Harrkev says:

    One thing that annoys me about “green” cars is the constant drive towards smaller. I could never use one of these. I am about 6’2″ tall. Every day, I am taking two kids to school. On the weekend, my car may be packed with four or five people. And, if we want to go on a weekend outing, the trunk will be full of stuff.

    Why can’t there be an affordably hybrid car that is sized for a real family? I know tha Ford is taking steps in that direction, but I have my doubts about Ford’s quality.

    • Joel Johnson says:

      @Harrkev: I’m 6’3″. I fit in most well-designed cars. It’s not the size of the cars that are the issue, but the size of the cabin. (And to what degree they allow the seat to be moved.)

  2. Anonymous says:

    I thought it would just have these car doors:
    http://www.disappearing-car-door.com/

    You gotta watch the video.

  3. Smoobly says:

    “lighter by almost a factor of three” means that the 1/X is one third the weight of the Prius.

    “smaller engine… by 1/3rd” means that the engine in the 1/X is two thirds the size of the engine in the Prius.

    These two figures are linked by “again,” implying they are the same number. Hmm, I detect a conflict. Which is it? One third or two?

    Thanks.

  4. Tim says:

    Looks great. I read online that there’s a “mild hybrid” version of the Yaris with a big starter motor that lets it shut down the gas engine at lights and stop signs. Any chances they could hand down some of the electric technology into an all electric Yaris, or maybe even a hybrid?

    I’m a college student on a budget, so I’m in the market for compact cars. If a company were to release a practical (In my mind, airbags, 3-4 seats, hatchback, top speed of at least 85 MPH with acceleration over 0 to 60 in 12 seconds) electric car for under $15,000, I’d seriously consider it.

    Also, leave the doors off and just use force fields. They look better and don’t fill up landfills. :P

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