The Russian billionaire owner of the New Jersey Nets has introduced a new line of hybrid cars — called “Yo” — that he hopes to begin selling in 2012.

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Mikhail Prokhorov said Monday the cars, powered both by gasoline and electricity, are “socially important products” that he hopes will “overcome existing stereotypes … that Russia cannot make normal cars.”

The vehicles are to be sold in three models — sedan, sporty and a small truck — with an expected price of around $10,000 (euro7,550).

The name is written in Russian by the letter E with two dots over it.

Prokhorov, who amassed a fortune in banking and metals, bought a majority share in the basketball team this year.