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08 March 2018, 01:14 | Ross Houston
Toyota will continue to offer diesel engines for its Land Cruiser 4x4 as well as for commercial vehicles such as the Hilux and Proace
The ToyotaPrius has pioneered hybrid technology for over 20 years.
Similar to the decision taken in 2016, to introduce Toyota C-HR without a diesel version, the new generation Auris will only be offered with petrol and HEV powertrains. Since then, HEV sales substantially exceed our diesel sales.
Market forces are determining the direction, and Toyota have confirmed they will phase out the production of diesel engines for passenger cars, beginning this year. Meanwhile sales of Toyota's hybrid models have risen sharply.
Last year, almost 15 percent of Toyota's sales in Europe were from diesel vehicles, down from 30 percent in 2012.
Toyota will continue to offer diesel engines in commercial vehicles (Hilux, Proace and Land Cruiser) to meet customer needs. Diesel's fall from grace has pushed manufacturers to turn their attention to producing more in-demand petrol models or make the jump to electric, or at least hybrid, vehicles.
In addition to the hybrid versions, the all-new Auris will offer a single conventional engine, a 1.2-liter turbocharged gasoline unit.
Toyota's hybrid model sales in Europe jumped 45 percent previous year.
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"As part of our electrified vehicle strategy, we are progressively expanding our HEV offering with a second, more powerful 2.0-litre engine".
Starting with the new generation Auris, this expanded HEV line-up is a natural reaction to their passenger vehicle customers' demands, Toyota insist.
Toyota Europe CEO Johan van Zyl said today at the Geneva motor show that the brand would dump all its diesel-powered passenger cars and crossovers in Europe by the end of the year. In contrast, hybrid electric cars now represent nearly 50% of Toyota Ireland's auto sales mix.
Toyota Ireland chief Steve Tormey said the announcement showed how serious they are about making cleaner cars as he prepares to lead the Irish market out of diesel.
Toyota is trailing its main rivals Nissan and Renault in 100-percent electric cars but has vowed to catch up through sustained investments in the emerging technology.
The Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Denis Naughten, said: "I welcome Toyota's leadership on this".
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