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Toyota to build Prius at 3rd Japan plant


Toyota Motor Corp will start making the Prius hybrid model at a third Japanese factory from September in a bid to shorten delivery time to customers, the Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun newspaper said on Monday.

The third-generation Prius has topped Japan's best-selling chart for the past nine months thanks to generous subsidies and tax incentives on fuel-efficient models. Customers still wait more than three months for delivery.

Toyota currently builds about 50,000 Priuses a month combined at its Tsutsumi factory and at unit Toyota Auto Body Co, and plans to begin making another 6,000 at its Motomachi factory, the industry newspaper said.

A Toyota spokesman declined to comment.

The Motomachi factory mainly produces mid- to large sedans such as the Mark X model, and built the first-generation Prius launched in late 1997.