Plaid Cymru’s Dafydd Wigley joins Prius’s cross-party club
One of Wales’s senior statesmen has become the latest political figure to opt for the environmental benefits offered by the Toyota Prius. Dafydd Wigley, a leading figure in Plaid Cymru who has served both as a Member of Parliament at Westminster and a Welsh Assembly Member, took delivery of his privately purchased new car at Toyota’s Deeside engine plant in North Wales.
Mr Wigley and his Prius are likely to become a familiar sight in the area, as he is bidding for a return to front-line politics by standing as a candidate for North Wales region in the 2007 assembly election.
“Global warming – and the carbon emissions which cause it – is the single most critical challenge facing humanity. The Toyota Prius is the most environmentally friendly car on the market and in purchasing one, I hope that I am making a statement that we all have to take this issue immensely seriously. The fact that Toyota is one of the few motor companies who have a manufacturing plant in North Wales is an added bonus and I was delighted to meet their Deputy Managing Director for Toyota Manufacturing UK, Mr Carl Klemm, and to learn more about the company and its activities,” said Mr Wigley.
Launched in 2004, the Prius won both the European Car of the Year and International Engine of the Year awards. Powered by Toyota Hybrid synergy Drive, a combination of a conventional 1.5-litre petrol engine and a compact but powerful electric motor, it is the cleanest family-sized car on the market, emitting 104g/km of carbon dioxide and capable of 65.7mpg in combined cycle driving.
Thanks to its self-recharging battery, it never has to be off the road for the power to be topped up, and it is capable of running for a set distance on its electric motor alone, for example in slow-moving city traffic, reducing exhaust emissions to zero.