The popularity of hybrid vehicle models like the Prius has soared along with gasoline prices in North America.
Vehicle manufacturer Toyota plans to produce 500,000 autos with hybrid engine technology in 2006.
According to the Asahi Shimbun, Toyota expects demand for its Prius to grow dramatically. The company recently announced plans to build hybrid versions of its enormously popular Camry at it Georgetown, Kentucky plant. 50,000 hybrid Camrys will be produced by the Georgetown plant in 2006.