Prius Plug-in hybrid sets fuel economy record at the Nurburgring.
The Nurburgring Nordschleife has become a temple of speed and power in recent years with automakers and track-day talents testing their cars to their limits at a track many call the 'Green Hell'.
Porsche currently holds the street-legal automobile 'Ring record with the 6:57 run completed by the 918 Spyder hybrid supercar.
Toyota has now set an electrifying Nurburgring record in its own hybird, the Prius Plug-in. But Toyota didn't take the Prius to the 'Ring to see how fast it could lap the infamous 20.81km circuit, rather to set a fuel economy record.
The Prius took a leisurely 20 minutes and 59 seconds to complete a full lap of the circuit but used just 0.4L/100km - significantly less than Toyota's claimed combined figure of 1.76L/100km for the plug-in version.
During the record lap, the Prius kept to the circuit's minimum average speed requirement of 60km/h and the car was completely standard with the exception of low rolling resistance tyres and a few TRD styling accessories.
The hybrid-electric powertrain's batteries were fully topped-up for the lap and given that the Prius can travel up to 22km in full electric mode, theoretically the 20.81km lap distance can be driven without petrol assistance.
But, given the 305m elevation change between the highest and lowest part of the Nurburgring circuit, the petrol engine was required momentarily during one particularly steep ascent.
Toyota claim the car used less than five tablespoons of fuel during the record run. Time will tell if other manufacturers will follow Toyota's charge.