Better Value Than Regular Prius (After Incentives)
written on 05-25-2014
Has all the Prius pro's and con's. Pro's include excellent packaging, fuel economy, and tech features and drivetrain. Con's include slow acceleration, cheap and easy to scratch interior parts, built to save weight which means less sound deadening. But Toyota is offering $4,000 rebate, 0% financing for 60 months, $0 down and no payments for 90 days, and $2,500 federal tax rebate, and $1,500 California rebate (for CA residents). So in the end, the car costs LESS than a comparably eqipped regular Prius 3. In other words, you get all the Prius 3 features + heated seats + no wheel caps + the possibility of carpool stickers in CA + plug in capability + higher resale value FOR LESS MONEY.
UPDATE: Having owned the car for 13 months and driven 7000 miles, I continue to be totally pleased with my purchase. I have had no mechanical problems, and there are no squeaks or rattles. The city gas mileage is amazing, typically between 102 and 108 mpg. When I bought the car, I didn't realize how versatile the hatchback would be in transporting various items. I would definitely buy this car again. As I have solar panels, I wanted the pleasure of driving on electricity I produce. The 2014 plug-in Prius suites my needs perfectly, as its 11-mile range is adequate for doing errands in my small city. Buying an all-electric (such as a used Leaf ) was not practical for me because I wanted the option of being able to drive long distances. After six months of ownership, I am totally pleased with my purchase. I had read reviews of the car and was concerned by car testers' comments that the steering was numb and that the model was no fun to drive. As far as I am concerned, the steering, which is light, is fine, and I enjoy driving this car. An unanticipated bonus of having a small but heavy car is that it holds the road very well. I bought the car just for city driving, as I have a Subaru Outback (which I love) for highway driving. However, this Prius is proving so satisfactory that we have driven it on several 500-mile trips. On the each of these trips, the car has achieved gas mileage in the high 40s. With mostly city driving, but including some trips to communities 15 miles away, the gas mileage has been phenomenal. Upon filling the tank twice, after driving each time more than 700 miles locally, I achieved 94 mpg and 102 mpg.
Like my wife's Prius, this car does all you expect of it as far and mileage and price goes. My one, very major disappointment is in the on-board computer. When I bought a 'plug-in', I was under the impression that I would always get to use the approx. 11.5 miles of electric charge before the gas motor kicked in (unless, of course I accelerated rapidly). Instead, the motor often kicks in while I'm still rolling out the driveway and the electric stage comes on intermittently during driving. This means that I often drive 20 or 30 miles before using up my charge which to my thinking, makes the 'plug-in' aspect a waste of time and gas.
I was looking at several electric and plug in vehicles to replace my '04 Prius (which lasted for 293,327 trouble free miles). I test drove many new models but because of my previous car's remarkable reliability and efficiency, I knew the only thing that could replace my Prius, would be another Prius. I found myself searching for my next car at a time after Toyota had discontinued the Prius Plug-in but before it had rolled out its new Prius Prime. I was getting ready to purchase a new 2016 Prius Eco when I came across an off lease company that had several used Prius Plug-ins for sale. They were having trouble moving these vehicles (partly because they had no clue what this version of the Prius did). Using this ignorance to my advantage, I purchased a used 2013 Prius Plug-in for a very good deal. I quickly found out that these are amazing vehicles. I get the same impeccable reliability and efficiency that my other Prius delivered plus the added capability of having an electric vehicle for all of my in town trips. This plug-in version has a modified suspension system from the standard Prius. I found that it handles well and feels confident and firmly planted on the road. The seats are comfortable for long road trips and the spacious cargo area is exactly the same size as in the standard Prius despite the plug-in having a larger battery! These cars are designed for efficiency whether you are using it as an EV or a hybrid. In electric only mode, I've found that my Prius Plug-in is more efficient than many other electric only cars. Its battery size and weight does not seem to prohibit the efficiency of its electric only mode since it does not have to carry the excessive weight of a large battery like the ones found in a Tesla or Leaf. Not having to carry around that "dead weight" is also why I am getting 50+mpg using just the gas engine in hybrid mode. Most plug in vehicles seem to sacrifice the efficiency of their hybrid mode in an effort to carry a larger battery (example, the Chevy Volt with only 37-42 mpg). I've driven about 22,363 miles since I purchased my car a year and a half ago. I am averaging 4.68 miles per kilowatt-hour after travelling 14,122 miles in Electric mode only (compare this number to other electric only cars today and you may be impressed). I am averaging 51.83 mpg after traveling 8241 miles in hybrid mode only (this reflects mostly highway mileage). So go ahead and try to snag one of these gems from an off lease or any used car dealer. You will be happy you did!
Purchased 2012 Prius Plug In April 2015. I wanted everyone to know that my family and I were involved in a side impact crash this year by a 17 year old distracted driver. The crash occurred on a two lane road, and the other driver hit our drivers side from front driver to rear drivers side doors. The side impact air bags deployed as supposed to and no deaths. For a car I only wanted to purchase to drive around to save money, I thought that the thin metal of the doors would not protect very well, I was wrong! This vehicle has taken care of me and my family so well that I purchased another one (2014 Prius Plug In) a week after the crash when I was told my 2012 vehicle was totaled. So before you purchase your next vehicle, what is your family worth, do your home work read reviews and consider if an accident happens which vehicle should you really get!