16 November 2011

Toyota Aqua Hybrid - 40km/litre little hatch

Toyota Motor has announced their latest hybrid car, the Toyota Aqua, previously known as Prius C covered in previous posting here. The Aqua name is for JDM only, while the rest of the world will know the car in in its previous name, i.e Prius C to draw a family relationship with Prius and Prius V as the Toyota hybrid-only product line-up. The car will be available from December 2011 in Japanese market. The small hatchback measures only 3,995mm long, 1,695mm wide and 1,445mm tall, and rides on a wheelbase of 2,550mm. 

The 5-seater hatchback is powered by 1.5l gasoline engine hooked to THS-II, Toyota hybrid drive system. Under the Japanese test cycle of JC08, the Aqua will return 35km/l, while in 10.15 mode, it returns a staggering 40km/l. The new hybrid powertrain is 40kg lighter than the unit in Prius.

Despite the compact footprint and Yaris-level if wheelbase, the Aqua hatchback the rear legroom is comparable to Toyota Corolla, while the luggage space is equivalent to the Toyota Auris, basically a Corolla hatchback.

The Aqua hybrid gets an well-honed exterior design cue to optimize aerodynamics. For instance, a spats in fitted in front of the the tyres, fixed to the car floor. This is to prevent a pressure build-up when the fast airstream hits the tyre directly. Spat acts as a flow conditioner in shaping the airflow to smoothly flow around the tyre. 

The side mirror too gets a makeover to further reduce the drag. The side mirror base is sculpted, and has a fin to streamline the air flow. Similar fins are protruding from the rear lights as well, all works in conjunction with the tapered tail and rear spoiler to reduce the flow separation and pressure-induced drag acts on the rear fascia of the car.
Small gallery of Toyota Aqua can be found after the jump.