Japanese hybrids debut at Geneva

Japanese car makers Infiniti, Toyota and Honda have been unveiling new hybrids to the European market at the Geneva Motor Show.

Infiniti, the luxury arm of the Nissan group, launched its M35 hybrid, its first foray into the hybrid market and the first Infiniti M-line model to be sold in Europe. The new sedan features a 3.5 liter V6 engine coupled to an electric motor and will join the M-line range from 2011. According to Infiniti's Toru Saito, the M35 Hybrid can reach speeds of up to 100km/h on electric power alone, with zero tailpipe emissions.

Embattled car firm Toyota, enjoying a brief respite courtesy of GM's 1.2-million car recall announced March 2, also unveiled its new Auris HSD hybrid. The model marks the first step of Toyota's planned roll-out of hybrid technology across its entire European range by the early 2020s, combining a 1.8 liter gasl engine with an electric motor to give the performance of a 2.0 liter gas or diesel hatchback.

Toyota says that the new model will offer fuel economy from 3.17 l/100km and emissions of 89g/km when it launches in July. Pricing and detailed specifications will be released closer to that time.

Honda has also confirmed that its latest CR-Z sports hybrid, unveiled in Japan last week, will be available to order in Europe from Friday, March 5. Showing the car for the first time in Europe, Honda said that the car will be priced at £16,999 (€18,736) for the basic model, and will offer fuel consumption of 4.17 l/100km.

Website: http://www.infiniti.com

Website: http://www.toyota.com

Website: http://www.honda.com

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