Toyota is taking a new approach in Japan with a completely redesigned Prius lease program. The carmaker will offer customers a chance to get 10 percent lower monthly lease payments and opt for a new service offered by the company.
The service will update the hybrid vehicle’s safety features and mark the first time Toyota has offered over-the-air software updates for a model. The initiative seeks to promote new technology and also to lower lease prices and preserve used car prices in Japan. KINTO, Toyota’s laser division in the country, confirmed the new program earlier this week.
OTA updates are not new in the automotive industry. Tesla pioneered the technology and many manufacturers followed suit, including Polestar, Volkswagen, Ford, BMW and others. Toyota is now taking the first step and will focus on the vehicle’s safety system, including collision avoidance system and other features.
“Tesla’s customers, simply put, are high-income, and many of them are willing to pay for new and better things, which is why their products are popular in this segment of the market,” Shinya Kotera. , President of Kanto. , told Reuters in an interview. “Toyota customers aren’t like that. They’re not going to pay extra for new technology. They’re looking for something good, reliable and affordable.”
Kotera also confirmed that the Prius is the first vehicle to take advantage of the new lease program, but it certainly won’t be the only vehicle to do so. Toyota plans to expand the service to other vehicles and eventually make the new lease program available globally.
As for the new Prius, in the United States, this model comes with a new 2.0-liter engine and a newly developed lithium-ion battery pack. System output is rated at 194 horsepower (142 kW), enough to accelerate the hybrid from 0 to 60 mph (96 km/h) in a respectable 7.2 seconds. There’s also a plug-in hybrid variant with the same 2.0-liter mill that makes 220 hp (161 kW) and sprints to 60 mph (96 km/h) in just 6.6 seconds, making it faster than the new Acura Integra. makes