Toyota Cuts Prices on Prius Battery ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: Toyota Cuts Prices on Prius Battery

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Toyota Cuts Prices on Prius Battery

Toyota announced they would be reducing the price on their Prius battery pack. The first-generation battery for the 2000-2003 Prius was cut down to $2,299, while the 2004-2008 Prius battery will now cost $2,588. Both batteries cost $2,985 prior to the reduction.

That's good news for anyone who gets beyond the warranty on the Prius. Although it's still not cheap (when are car repairs ever cheap...), a 10% reduction in price is still something to be excited about.

"We are very pleased with the performance durability of the NiMh battery powering the Prius," said Gary Smith, TMS corporate manager for Product Quality and Service Support. "However, there will be rare cases where owners will require a hybrid battery replacement beyond the mileage limits of the 10-year 150,000-mile warranty or 8-year/100,000-mile warranty in non-California compliant states. For the most part, these high-mileage customers have a positive ownership experience and want to keep their vehicle. We've stated from the beginning that battery replacement costs would continue to decline due to technology and volume related advancements, and we believe this will continue."

Toyota also continues to look into re-manufacturing Prius batteries in North America.

Panasonic EV Energy, Ltd (60 percent share owned by Toyota) and Matsushita Electric produce the Nickel Metal Hydride Battery Packs (NiMH) or all Toyota and Lexus hybrids. A second plant is being built in Toyota, with a planned production rate of 1 million NiMH batteries per year by 2010.

Additionally, later this year, they will begin assembly-line production of lithium-ion batteries for automotive applications. These first-generation batteries will be used in a limited-volume placement program for a new lithium-battery powered PHV that will be leased beginning in late 2009 to fleet customers in Japan, Europe and North America.

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