Toyota and EDF Energy today kicked off a series of road trials of the much-hypded plug-in Prius. EDF and Toyota will be testing the PHEV Prius for the next year or so and expect the data collected during the trial to "play a pivotal role in the development of Toyota's PHV technology."
For these tests, Toyota built a smart meter into the Prius that can regulate charging and invoicing, something that - if standardized - will make plug-in vehicles a much easier sell to utilities. Toyota says that if you're driving no more than 25 kilometers (15.5 miles), then your gasoline use is cut by 60 percent. Not quite as sexy as the Chevy Volt's promises, but still worth it.