Confirmed: Toyota Could Consider Prius-Based Pickup Truck

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Auto shows are a great place to get rumors--or even wild fantasies--confirmed. (Or, occasionally, dismissed contemptuously--but that's a different story.)

Following today's Toyota press conference that introduced the Prius V multipurpose vehicle that will go on sale as a 2012 model, and unveiled the Prius C concept for a compact hybrid to be launched next year, another possible Prius permutation proved to be a pickup.

Diligent reporter and beyond-fanatical pickup-truck enthusiast Mike Levine interviewed Bob Carter, group vice president and general manager of Toyota Motor Sales USA. He confirmed that the company hadn't ruled out a pickup truck with a hybrid powertrain.

2012 Toyota Prius V launch press conference, 2011 Detroit Auto Show

2012 Toyota Prius V launch press conference, 2011 Detroit Auto Show

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Four years ago, Toyota showed the Advanced Breakthrough Aero Truck (A-BAT) concept, breaking new ground by putting a hybrid-electric powertrain into a four-door smaller pickup truck.

Though considerably more daring in design, the Toyota A-BAT was closest in spirit to the current Honda Ridgeline: a four-door, unibody

While the A-BAT concept was well received, economic recession ended any immediate development plans. Now, Carter said, a Prius pickup could be considered. "It’s not off the table," he told, "but nothing is decided at this point.”

Would you consider driving a Toyota Prius pickup truck? What would be the pros and cons? Tell us what you think in the Comments section below.

Stay on top of all of the happenings at the 2011 Detroit Auto Show through our show page, where we're bringing you the latest news, previews, live photos, videos, and more straight from Cobo Hall.


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