A high-ranking Toyota executive has confirmed the Japanese automaker is “studying” the possibility of developing a hybrid powertrain option for the new Quantum.

Takuo Ishikawa, Toyota’s chief engineer for the Quantum (which is also known as the HiAce in some markets), told GoAuto.com the new platform was able to support electrification, adding the company was “studying” potential powertrain options.

Although in South Africa the new Quantum is offered in 2,8-litre turbodiesel guise only, the Australian market also receives a 3,5-litre petrol V6 variant. And it’s this engine that would likely form the basis of a hybrid powertrain (in fact, as GoAuto.com points out, such an arrangement is already employed by the Lexus RX450h).

Sean Hanley, Toyota Australia’s vice-president for sales and marketing, furthermore told the publication this sort of hybrid powertrain would certainly suit the Quantum.

“I’ve long believed that the most practical solution to electrification today – it may not be the endgame, but today – is the hybrid offerings we have in petrol right now,” Hanley said.

“That is no plug-in, it’s practical, it serves to reduce our CO2 footprint, it reduces fuel consumption, there’s no range anxiety, it’s proven technology, and you know what? It’s affordable.

“So, for today I believe that is the way to go, however Toyota has never ruled out plug-in hybrid, hybrid petrol, other hybrid powertrains; we’ve never ruled out fuel-cell electric vehicles, and of course we’ve never ruled out battery-electric vehicles,” he added.

Original article from Car