Toyota is looking to reward Prius drivers in Japan with points for maximizing the use of full electric mode.
The “game” is available to all new Prius plug-in users (aka Prius Prime for the rest of the world). Toyota has struck a deal with five important Japanese electricity providers to do this, and the points collected can be used to pay electric bills or exchanged for products.
This happens as Toyota can analyze the data coming from peoples’ Prii (maybe inspired by Tesla?) like the electric-only trips made, how much home charging is performed and other unnamed figures. Toyota uploads the data to the electricity providers that award the points.
This is not the first time Toyota tries to solve things by gamifiying them. For example, a few months ago Toyota was giving users free coffee at a Komeda shop if they didn’t use their phone while driving (the devices had to be but with the screen facing the ground). The program was a success, with over 37,000 app downloads and 1.6 million miles of phone-free driving.
Doing the same thing for pollution reduction purposes can prove even more useful.
Being a Prius driver, I know going electric-only is already a game for anyone driving a Prius, but I never thought of that more than as a way to save money on gas and spare the environment from useless fumes. Now Toyota has taken things to the next level, in a very interesting way, which is to be applauded.