The Toyota Prius c (c stands for “city”), named the Toyota Aqua in Japan, is a full hybrid gasoline-electric subcompact hatchback manufactured and marketed by Toyota Motor Corporation. The Prius c is the third member of the Prius family, and combines the features of a Yaris-sized car with a hybrid powertrain. The Prius c is priced lower than the conventional Prius and has a higher fuel economy in city driving under United States Environmental Protection Agency test cycles. The Prius c is ranked by the EPA as the 2012 most fuel efficient compact car when plug-in electric vehicles are excluded.
The production version of the Aqua was unveiled in the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show. The production Prius c was introduced in the U.S. at the January 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The Aqua was launched in Japan in December 2011 at a price of ¥1.69 million (US$21,700). Sales in several Asian markets began in January 2012. The Prius c was released in the U.S. and Canada in March 2012. Sales in Australia and New Zealand began in April 2012.
The Aqua is considered the most successful nameplate launch in Japan in the last 20 years. As of July 2015, the Aqua/Prius c is the second most sold hybrid of Toyota Motor Corporation after the regular Prius, with 1,081,332 units sold worldwide, and Japan is the market leader with 901,465 units sold. For two consecutive years, 2013 and 2014, the Aqua was the top selling new car in Japan.