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If you thought hybrid cars were fuel-savers and slow-cruisers, think again. Toyota will be bringing some serious performance to the world of hybrid cars when they unveil their new Hybrid-R model at the Frankfurt Motor Show, on September 10.
The Frankfurt Motor Show is one of the biggest motoring events on the calendar and the perfect place for the major brands to show the world something very special. And a 400bhp hybrid certainly sounds pretty special. Even more so if it manages to mix the low CO2 performance generally associated with hybrid cars with the all-out excitement of a small car with big power.
We don't know a huge amount about this new Hybrid-R model, other than that it is based on a current Toyota model – which, looking at this Toyota teaser image – appears to be the current and relatively new Yaris supermini model.
We also know that it will employ a high performance petrol engine and electric motors; making it most likely four-wheel drive, as well as the electric powertrain technology from the Toyota Racing TS030 Hybrid race car that goes extremely quickly in the FIA World Endurance Championship, and recently came second at the Le Mans 24-Hour race. Proven poke, then.
Toyota has also announced that the car will be ready for either the road or the race track, with a switchable, computer-controlled driving experience. So, at the flick of a switch we'll have either a fast road car, or a super-fast race car, and all with the extreme acceleration associated with electric motors. Sounds a bundle of hybrid fun!
The basic Yaris supermini is already relatively light and nimble, so with this proposed extra power and four-wheel drive grip, the Hybrid-R, in principal, sounds like it should really impress when driven with the racer's edge. All will be revealed on the Toyota stand in early September.