Even mighty Toyota is feeling the pinch of the self-fulfilling prophecy that is the disintegration of the economy, with rumors surfacing production of the 2010 Toyota Prius in the Tupelo, Mississippi plant will be delayed. That'll keep all Prius production in Japan for the time being. Demand for the gas-thrifty hybrids has fallen as fuel prices have plummeted to sub-$2.00 levels, leaving dealers sitting on a healthy but still enviable 21 day supply. This could also be a reconsideration of strategy, since the dollar has strengthened and a collapse of any of the big three could be a deathblow to some shared domestic parts suppliers, leaving the Prius high and dry with an otherwise profitable assembly line. We'll keep our eyes out for movement back to Tupelo, but don't expect it to come anytime soon.

[LA Times]