UPDATE 2-Toyota to raise Prius hybrid wagon output - Nikkei

Mon Jun 6, 2011 8:51pm EDT

(Adds company comment, background, share price)

* Plans to raise production to 70 pct above initial target

* Says will boost output to 5,000 cars/month

* Shares up 1.1 pct in early trade, vs flat Nikkei benchmark

TOKYO, June 7 (Reuters) - Toyota Motor Corp plans to increase monthly production of its Prius hybrid wagon to 70 percent above its initial target by around August or September, the Nikkei business daily reported.

Orders have been coming in faster than expected since Prius Alpha, the first of an extended family of Prius models planned by Toyota, made its debut May 13, the paper said.

Toyota will boost output to 5,000 vehicles per month from 3,000, the Nikkei reported, to shorten customer waiting time. The wagon comes in a two-row, five-seat version and a three-row, seven-seat version.

A company spokesman declined to comment on the report.

Toyota first unveiled the extended Prius family at the Detroit auto show in January, announcing plans to begin selling the five-seat version, to be called the Prius v in North America, this summer. The three-row model will go on sale in Europe in mid-2012, under the name Prius+. [ID:nN10285824]

Toyota, the pioneer in hybrid technology, has a goal of selling at least 1 million hybrid vehicles globally a year by mid-decade. It plans to offer the hybrid option across its entire line-up by 2020.

Shares of Toyota were up 1.1 pct at 3,250 yen in early morning trade in Tokyo, while the benchmark Nikkei average was flat. (Reporting by James Topham in Tokyo and Soham Chatterjee in Bangalore; Editing by Vinu Pilakkott)

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