Toyota revealed the NS4 advanced plug-in hybrid concept vehicle at the 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
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The NS4 concept is a dedicated plug-in hybrid, separate from the Prius family, designed with future mobility requirements in mind. The NS4 concept is set for potential global market introduction by 2015.
“In this digital age, cars are becoming another spoke in the wheel of our electronic connectivity,” said Jim Lentz, president and chief operating officer of Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc.
NS4’s advanced powertrain targets a next-generation Hybrid Synergy Drive plug-in system that is smaller and lighter with improved fuel economy, better acceleration and longer electric range, while maintaining a short charge time.
Interestingly, the NS4 concept has a Human-Machine Interface (HMI) that is built around a multi-touch screen with the look and feel of a Smartphone. The HMI designed to conveys information quickly with minimum distractions and maximum driver awareness. It will also direct air-conditioning, audio, battery-charge and navigation functions. The HMI system is even capable of “learning” driver preferences and habits to anticipate driver responses in specific environments and situations.
Safety aspect, the NS4 introduces a next-generation Pre-Collision System (PCS) with lane departure, rear-end and pedestrian collision-avoidance technologies designed to predict collisions under certain circumstances and help avoid them. Using millimetre-wave radar, stereo cameras and near-infrared beams, it can help avoid collisions by applying the brakes and manipulating steering. In addition, a Blind Spot Monitor included to detect vehicle in the adjacent lane and visually alerts the driver with indicators in the upper dash.
Lastly, NS4 introduces 4 new glass technologies to improve driver visibility and reduce fuel consumption:
• Hydrophobic coating – Fluorine-coated glass causes rain drops to form into semi-spherical shapes for improved visibility.
• Anti-fog film – A high-performance resin with anti-fogging characteristics and increased durability.
• High ultraviolet (UV) absorbing inner-layer – Removes 99 per cent of harmful UVA and UVB rays.
• Anti-solar film with radio-wave transparency – Reduces the internal vehicle temperature and improves electronic device functionality
Inner and outer rear-view mirrors have been replaced with cameras that provide the driver with a wider view than conventional rear-view mirrors.
Photo Gallery: Toyota NS4 Advanced Hybrid Concept[nggallery id=427]