[THE INVESTOR] Japanese carmaker Toyota Motor on March 14 announced the launch of a petrol-electric hybrid hatchback Prius C, to attract younger Korean customers.
“Prius C is the main model that represents Toyota’s hybrid cars. It is easy and fun to drive so we believe Korean customers will love this model,” Toyota Korea CEO Nobuyuki Takemura said at a press conference in Seoul.
He added that Toyota aims to gain a young and lively hybrid carmaker image with its new model. In order to achieve this goal it has launched Prius C in 12 different colors to grab the attention of customers in their 20s and 30s with diverse demands.
Furthermore, Toyota emphasized that the new model is mated with a 1.5-liter hybrid powertrain and has a rated fuel economy of 19.4 kilometers per liter.
Prius C is priced at 24.9 million won (US$23,4060) and customers can purchase it cheaper by receiving 500,000 won government subsidies. Prius C owners also can get 3.1 million won tax discount for being a hybrid vehicle.
“We aim to sell 800 units of Prius C annually,” Toyota Korea Sales and Marketing Executive Kang Dae-hwan said during the conference. The company which started receiving preorders from Feb. 26 has already received 100 bookings.
Prius C was first launched in 2011 and over 1.52 million units have been sold globally.
“Recently, demand for small-sized cars has increased in Korea, so we decided to launch Prius C here now,” a company spokesperson told The Investor.
Besides the new model Toyota Korea sells hybrid sedan Prius, Prius V wagon and plug-in hybrid Prius Prime here.
Toyota Motor is the third biggest foreign carmaker here with sales reaching 1,235 units last month, following Mercedes-Benz and BMW.
By Song Seung-hyun (email@example.com)