2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Not Without Compromises
By wcascrs on
2011 Toyota Prius Three 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
I like the car because it's very easy to use with its Smart Key entry and Push Button Start.
I also like the way the hybrid system works and sure don't mind the 50 MPG combined.
But power and handling are lacking and it lets road noise right on in.
Climbing steep hills around here gets the gas engine pretty worked up, and it lets you know it too, right into the cabin with the road nose.
It has a torsion beam rear suspension and goes around corners ok, but it has a fair amount of body roll doing so and gets a little unsettled over bumps.
it seat four really well, five adults not so much.
Push button start
Smart Key system
Hybrid Synergy Drive
Has compact spare tire
hatchback very useful when needed
Seats 4 well
Good cargo room
Of course the 50 MPG
Quell the road noise!
More power, especially when needed for hills!
Independent rear suspension please
Make less body roll in turns
Interior sort of bland with hard plastics
Move the speedo and info in front of the driver, not 7 inches to the right!!
Improve the driving position and provide greater range of steering wheel adjustability
Make door armrests higher and pad the armrests!
Can we get a sleeker look outside?
Definitely lose the floating bridge console so I don't have to strain to reach underneath it
Let it go on record that the 3rd generation 'liftback' Prius is not a very tall-friendly car for its driver.
The ones with mechanical adjust seats are the worst.
How is that you say?
Although the driver's seat adjusts all over the place, inviting those with very long legs in, the steering wheel adjusts so little, it's a joke.
It's like the seat and steering wheel are not meant to be in the same car.
Net effect is I have to move my seat up pretty high such that my head is only 2 inches from the roof liner.
I'm 6'2" tall, I should be sitting much lower but wheel doesn't allow that.
I had to build a board to rest my right calf on to keep it off the center console also since leg support lessened when raising the seat.
Tall buyers with long legs beware!
Going to contradict my statement above to say I move the seat back down to a lower setting which gives adequate headroom.
Seating position is still a bit awkward with little too much tilt in seat bottom cushion.
Finally resolved to keep hands up high on steering wheel which helps in driving.
I've grown a little weary of the unusual looking interior.
There is really nothing of luxury or much desirability in the dash and interior.
It's a bit too futuristic and frankly a bit dorky, but it can't miss 50 MPG at least when warmed up.
If only putt 1 mile to store and back, well, expect maybe 38 MPG: engine doesn't warms up in 1 mile.
Marginal power up hills, high road noise on rough freeway, bit dull handling, numb steering and funky looks are not high points in Prius.
8-way power adjustable seat can improve the seating position, at least for me in a rental 2013 Prius Four.
Tap front of the electric seat adjust button to flatten out seat cushion a bit (something cannot do on my mechanical 6-way seat), bring seatback forward a bit and driving position is then less awkward.
Trouble is the power seat is only had in 4 and 5 models which can still be over $27k at discount prices.
Pretty impressive how good Edmunds is with their reviews.
They are a trusted source to me.
Some comments to follow up on my review:
I'm 6'2" tall and there is plenty of headroom in the car.
As stated above, the power seat would help to really dial in the best seating position, but I cannot say with a straight face that it is uncomfortable because it is good enough.
I rely on an inch and a half slab of foam on driver's door as I always rest my left elbow, my arms are very long.
Center armrest quite hard, made pad for it.
No mechanical issues at all, knock on wood.
Only a minor hood latch rattle Toyota got right on a fixed.
These are great commuter cars and like everyone else says, NOTHING, no other gas burning car can touch its fuel economy.
Over 15,000 miles, the average is 51 mpgs so far.
No hypermiling games, just driving.