New Toyota Prius lineup coming Monday

Word began to leak out more than a year ago that Toyota would grow its line of hybrids under the Prius name, transforming it from a mere model into a brand itself.

It then teased an image out of a new Prius in October. And now the company says it will unveil an unspecified new Prius vehicle on Jan. 10, at the 2011 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

Toyota was quite coy in making the announcement, saying simply, “In addition to the current third-generation Prius and Prius Plug-in vehicle (PHV), the first all-new addition to the Prius Family will debut along with a Prius concept vehicle.”

Of course, such behavior only invites intrepid auto hounds to ferret out the information, and various news organizations, blogs and chat rooms have apparently known for a while that what Toyota will show off is a hybrid Prius MPV. 

Car and Driver, which reported this news back in October, said the minivan was chosen to lead off the new Priuses in part because “the MPV was the vehicle most requested by current Prius owners.”

To get folks ready for the new Prius, Toyota roped  X Games champion skateboarder Bob Burnquist to do a sneak peak video. 

You can watch it above, although frankly there isn’t much to see yet.


* Pete Danko, EarthTechling