A plug-in hybrid vehicle basically operates as an electric vehicle on short trips and as a conventional hybrid vehicle on longer ones. Its electric vehicle attributes mean it has a longer total cruising distance and better overall fuel efficiency than a conventional hybrid; this means lower fossil fuel consumption and, thus, reduced CO2 emissions and atmospheric pollution. But because it is a hybrid vehicle, it can run regardless of battery charge and is not completely dependent on a battery-charging infrastructure.

Toyota is developing a plug-in hybrid vehicle that can be charged using external power sources (such as household electricity), based on its hybrid technology, which it has positioned as a core technology for environmentally considerate vehicles. The concept model Toyota will display at the Frankfurt Show has a targeted electric-vehicle cruising range of about 20 kilometers on a full charge, and its targeted CO2 emissions level is below 60 grams per kilometer.

Toyota believes plug-in hybrid vehicles represent an environmentally considerate solution that can be widely applied to respond to the diversification of energy sources. As such, Toyota intends to introduce about 500 plug-in hybrid vehicles globally, about: 200 in Japan, 150 in the US, 150 in Europe (including France, the UK and Germany); primarily to fleet customers, to encourage market acceptance and promote understanding.

Toyota will continue its efforts to achieve sustainable mobility by using its hybrid technologies to develop plug-in hybrid vehicles, electric vehicles and fuel-cell hybrid vehicles, which are expected to help reduce fossil fuel consumption, lower CO2 emissions and respond to the diversification of energy sources.