Amid continually rising crude oil prices and growing concerns for the degradation of the natural environment, Toyota Motors Philippines Corporation (TMP) is continuing to test the Toyota Prius. The world's pioneer of hybrid technology, the Prius is acclaimed worldwide for its fuel efficiency and environment-friendly features.

As a hybrid, the Prius is propelled by two power sources the electric and conventional internal combustion engines. The engine, the battery, or both can power the vehicle, depending on driving conditions. A number of Prius units were brought to the Philippines so they can be tested under local road and traffic situations.

One of the organizations that recently tested the Prius was the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI). The Laguna-based international rice research and education organization is considered the largest international agricultural research institute in Asia. It aims to reduce poverty and hunger, improve the health of rice farmers and consumers, and ensure that rice production is environmentally sustainable.

IRRI officers claim that their organization's concern for the environment and its inhabitants motivate them to consider other lifestyle options one of which is to shift to a more sustainable means of transportation. With this objective, IRRI decided to test drive the Prius. IRRI's purchasing officer, Anthony Daluz, noted its performance, "It isn't only fuel efficient but its handling, design, and comfort level are impressive."

The Toyota Prius' hybrid engine consumes less gas and emits less carbon monoxide, which is ideal for environmental protection. With a commitment to driving tomorrow, fuel efficiency could be expected from Toyota's products and operations.