TOKYO — Some buyers will have to wait until next April for deliveries of the latest Toyota Prius because of shortages of a new battery that’s adding to production delays from the March earthquake and tsunami in Japan.
The launch yesterday of the more spacious Prius a, or Prius alpha had been initially set for April. But the earthquake in northeastern Japan destroyed key parts suppliers and forced a delay.
The battery shortage was an issue even before the earthquake.
The new Prius model, which looks like a station wagon or a tiny minivan, comes in two versions — one seating five people, set to go on sale in North America later this year as the Prius V, and one with three rows seating seven people, being offered in Europe mid-2012 called Prius +.