Things don’t necessarily come out as planned and Toyota is one carmaker that definitely knows that to be true. And, no, we are not talking about its recall woes, although those are good lessons for the Japanese company. What we are discussing is the U.S. production of Toyota’s gasoline-electric vehicle, the Prius. Toyota’s original plans were set to have the hybrid built at its Mississippi facility, but when a plant in California formerly co-owned by GM shut its doors, Toyota turned its attention to the Corolla and left the Prius overseas.
Now, according to Reuters, the Toyota Prius may see its production in the Land of the Free by 2016. Executive Vice President Atsushi Niimi says that is when the next remodeling of the Prius is expected and that is when Toyota would feel comfortable enough in the U.S. economy to move it over.
"If you look at unemployment, housing, and other economic indicators there’s not much good news. I think it will take time for the market to recover," Niimi said. He added that he doesn’t agree with reports stating that the U.S. market could recover to above 12 million units next year or 14-15 million in 2012.