Natural Habitat - 2012 Toyota Prius C Long-Term Road Test
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2012 Toyota Prius C Long Term Road Test

2012 Toyota Prius C: Natural Habitat

June 27, 2012

Prius C in SM.jpg

My Mac abruptly decided to stop opening PDFs, so I made a Genius Bar appointment at the Santa Monica Apple Store, grabbed the keys to the Prius C and glided over there. I'm usually racing to beat traffic on the 405 to get home, so I don't hang out much in Santa Monica. But yesterday was different. Once Hoyt (who IS a genius) cured my computer, I went shopping, cruised trendy Montana Avenue and stopped for ice cream.

James has written that the Prius C did not fare well on pockmarked Wilshire Boulevard. Conversely, it is perfectly adapted to the traffic, parking and overall ambience of green-chic Santa Monica.

Like Brent and Donna, I didn't find the Prius C to be quite as good an experience under greater demands. Trying to pass a Guinness truck this morning on a freeway transition ramp nearly gave it an infarction. But for suburban/city driving, it was maneuverable in traffic and easy to park, both on the street and in busy lots teeming with hulking vehicles. If I was a Santa Monican mainly in need of a car for around-town trips, the Prius C would be worth a look.

As my colleague Jessica Caldwell points out, Southern Californians love their Prii. Prius is the fourth most registered vehicle for retail buyers in Los Angeles in 2012. I don't have registration data for Santa Monica, but I'd be willing to guess it's even higher here.

Carroll Lachnit, Features Editor @2,883 miles.


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