Gangsta's Paradise: wild new kit turns the Prius into a demon
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The Toyota Prius has never been known for sombre or subtle styling. In fact, over its four generations it's progressively grown more and more ... uhh ... distinctive.
You either like it or you don't, and that's as much about the tech underneath and the driving experience as it is the completely bonkers styling. And even then, most of those in the latter camp will find themselves having to rely on the Prius and its Uber-directed operators in drunken moments of need.
But, believe it or not, there are people on this planet of ours that actually think the Prius needs more styling oomph. And among them is a tuning company called Fledermaus.
The Japanese company have developed a series of Prius four-point wide-body kit called the Regina Altair, which admittedly sounds more like the name of a fringe character in Castle than an aftermarket aero set-up.
It includes a deeper front spoiler and rear bumper, some side skirts, and four bulbous over-fenders that reportedly make the Prius 110mm wider in the front and 130mm wider in the rear.
For the best part, you can look at these additions as a bit of irony blended with a growing tuning scene for these cars given their explosion in uptake on the second-hand market. But, consider too that in Japan the Prius is one of the most popular racers in the Super GT championship.
Yes, the current Prius has racing pedigree ... kind of.
It competes in the slower GT300 class against GT3-spec cars like the Mercedes-AMG GT and Lamborghini Huracan. Most of the race car has absolutely nothing to do with the road car, but it does feature the same hybrid system — which signals a greater level of road-to-race relevance than say NASCAR.
So, how much does this kit cost? According to the Fledermaus website it's ¥371,520 — or $4,800 in New Zealand dollars.
That's a lot for a few extra panels that do nothing for performance. But, if it helps you accrue five-star reviews from passengers, why not?