Despite massive recalls and limited production in some areas of Japan, Toyota is poised to make an impact with several exciting projects for most of its 2012 models.
Let's take a look into what's hot with Toyota.
Scrapping the Toyota Yaris – The Yaris has fallen by the wayside. Ever since its 2005 debut, the Yaris has lagged behind competitors for its lackluster cabin design and poor value. A new Yaris is scheduled for year's end with a 1.5 liter for 120HP and 40+ mpg. The interior will sport a redesign, with new technology (a touch scream interface and instrument panel in front of driver rather than its awkward center placement) with a rumored all wheel drive system. Expect the Yaris to have a starting MSRP of $14,500 and a good run to approach class leaders Ford Fiesta and Honda Fit.
2012 Camry – The Camry is looking to upset with an all-new redesign, increased fuel economy (a projected 24/35 mpg), and has rumors of a new six-speed automatic.
The debut of the Scion iQ Electric – The long awaited battery electric Scion iQ looks to hit dealerships by the end of 2012. Toyota's announcement is a direct potshot at the Fortwo and early indications look about average, with a projected 50 mile range for an early indication it needs to compete to match the Volt and the new Mitsubishi i MiEV (Mitsubishi innovative Electric Vehicle) hatchback.
Welcome 2012 Prius V – The Prius V will sacrifice its 51/48 mpg for 44/40 mpg due to increased cargo capacity, but will make up for it with the new voice recognition enabled Entune System, an offshoot of the MyFord Touch that will run smart phone apps like Bing, OpenTable, and Pandora on the in-car navigation with a host of data like traffic reports and a fuel economy guide. Safety steps it up a notch, with automated parking and rear cameras. Look for it around $29,000 this fall.