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PHOTO CAPTION: Toyota NS4 Concept; does it signal future styling clues for the Camry and Prius?

Toyota's Next Challenge: 'Heart-racing' Camry and Prius Hybrids

With hybrids becoming mainstreat, the trend sending Prius and industry leading Camry need to step up their game to stay ahead, which is a risky challenge.

Published: 21-Jan-2014

Toyota has a challenge: How to heed President Akio Toyoda’s insistence on heart-racing design for the next Camry and Prius models without jeopardizing their mass-market appeal.

Getting it wrong risks knocking Camry from its perch as the best-selling U.S. car, a title held for 12 consecutive years, and seeing Prius, which sells more than 200,000 units annually in the U.S., eclipsed by newer hybrid vehicles. While next- generation versions of both cars are in the works, Toyota executives haven’t provided many details.

The aim for the next Camry is a “more emotional, more impactful design,” Kevin Hunter, head of Toyota’s U.S. design studio, said in an interview at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. “Camry’s taken some hits on styling, but it’s still selling well. But we need to create better design for Camry in the future.”

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