Toyota has hinted at the availability of all-wheel drive in its updated 2019 Prius, set to be unveiled later this month at the Los Angeles motor show.
The Prius is already offered with all-wheel drive in its home market of Japan, using a system dubbed E-Four. The system uses a small second electric motor connected to the rear wheels, which can engage when additional traction is needed.
Thanks to the motor's compact size, the E-Four system has no impact on luggage space or fuel economy.
Along with the addition of all-wheel drive, the 2019 model-year Prius is expected to feature updated front and rear styling, along with minor specification and equipment changes.
While pricing and specs are yet to be confirmed, the E-Four system in Japan retails for around $2300 more than the regular, front-wheel-drive model.
Toyota Australia has yet to confirm local details of the 2019 model-year Prius. However, it is unlikely that we will be offered the all-wheel-drive option, given its focus on snowy and icy conditions.