Geneva LIVE: Toyota Yaris HSD hybrid

by Mark Kleis
Geneva LIVE: Toyota Yaris HSD hybrid

Toyota has officially introduced the production-form Yaris HSD hybrid - will it come to America?

A year after Toyota showed a gas-electric Yaris concept at the Geneva show, the Japanese automaker has returned to Switzerland with a production-ready Yaris Hybrid.

Based on the standard European-market Yaris model, Toyota says the Yaris HSD (Hybrid Synergy Drive) concept "incorporates hybrid-specific styling cues and new, forward-looking design elements." A new front fascia with larger inlets and larger 18-inch aerodynamic wheels are the biggest differences over the standard Yaris. Like most concept cars, this one is also swathed in a unique paint scheme and has some non-production styling items like LED lamps and camera rearview mirrors.

When the Yaris HSD hybrid reaches production later this year, it will become the first gasoline-electric offering in its segment in most markets, Toyota says (the Honda Fit/Jazz Hybrid isn't a global product).

In addition to the new images which show a production form very close to its slightly edgier concept form, Toyota also confirmed that the Yaris HSD will make use of the same 1.5-liter Atkinson cycle hybrid powertrain as found in the recently introduced Prius C - good for a combined peak rating of 98 horsepower. No word on fuel economy ratings, but they will likely be similar to those achieved by the smallest of Prii.

The Yaris HSD will be built at its plant in Valenciennes, France later this year, with a roll-out expected during the second quarter. A North American model based on the slightly different U.S.-specification Yaris could follow.

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