Toyota Rethinks Building its Prius Hybrid in the U.S.

Toyota has been caught off guard lately. You’d think that with its poster-boy Prius and other fuel-efficient cars, the company would be reaping the benefits from a gas-sick economy. It’s not. Toyota is losing money at a rate that startled company execs to the point of putting together a task force to assess the the company’s troubles and turn the ship back to profitability.

Toyota had plans to start producing the next generation of Prius models at the company’s Mississippi plant. The plant was created to produce the Highlander SUV, but with SUV sales plummeting, the plant was going to be switched to building the Prius instead. Production was scheduled to start in 2010, but now there are chances that the company might push those plans back to 2011 or 2012, according to a report from Japan’s Nikkei newspaper on November 14.

A Toyota spokesperson has confirmed that Toyota is reviewing its product strategy, future products and capital investments, but could give no further details. An announcement from the company is expected soon.

Source: Automotive News