From the ‘Well duh, why shouldn’t they’ department comes word (just rumors at the moment) that Toyota, the worlds largest car company, is thinking of making a Prius minivan.
Or to be more accurate, it would be a minivan based on the Prius platform. Now, a Prius isn’t a very big car to begin with, but we’ve seen the right platforms stretched and widened and bent into all sorts of useful shapes. Also, something else to consider is that perhaps Toyota is not thinking of making a van the size of a Chrysler, but perhaps something smaller. There are, after all, a whole bunch of little box vans running all over Japan. So perhaps making a one-box design, slightly longer and wider than a Prius wouldn’t be that much of a stretch AND serve a certain market segment here in the U.S.
Not only could a Prius-based minivan be a full on bull’s-eye in the urban/eco-conscious parents market, but a delivery van with a small footprint and great gas mileage for inner-city deliveries sounds like a great idea. If someone at Toyota isn’t working on this already, they should be. Consider the sales pitch you could make to fleet buyers, guys like FedEx or UPS, outfits that already use minivans. Think of not only the cost saving this could bring to a company, but the green cred they could brag about. Oh, and it would also be better for the planet.
Toyota, why not go all the way? Why not hook up one of your diesel engines to a hybrid drivetrain and put it into a minivan?
Photo from Flickr user milele