2017 Toyota Prius Prime Review
Pros & Cons
- Outstanding fuel economy
- Longer all-electric driving range than previous generation
- As hybrids go, the brake action is pretty natural
- Revised styling is better than base Prius
- Excessive road noise
- High trunk liftover
- The extra weight is noticeable from behind the wheel
- Seats four people
- the regular Prius (and Volt) seat five
List Price Range
$14,998 - $26,990
Used Prius Prime for SaleSee all for sale
Which Prius Prime does Edmunds recommend?
Though the range-topping Advanced trim level is packed with a long list of tech features, it commands a large premium over the others. Going with the mid-grade Premium trim level is the approach we recommend because the Premium better aligns with the Prius Prime's value proposition. It's also the cheapest way to get the significantly larger (11.6-inch) central touchscreen, which is a big improvement over the base 7-inch screen. In the bargain, the Premium adds upgraded cabin materials and a power driver seat, plus keyless entry/start and wireless smartphone charging.
Edmunds' Expert Review
The suspension struggles to manage the extra weight of the Prime's larger battery pack. One result is exaggerated motions over rises and crests.
Most helpful consumer reviews
Plus 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
In March 26, 2019, we traded it in for a Standard Range Plus Model 3 and got $18,300. It had become 'driveway art' as our BMW i3-REx was more useful. Bought in Rhode Island, I drove it 1,200 miles home; 21 hours sitting comfortable and listening to iPhone tunes; 55.7 MPG; one fuel stop at 600 miles; dynamic cruise control followed high-balling trucks, and; the radar looking through the rain and fog of the Poconos at I-81 speeds. It automatically paired with my iPhone 5s. Once home, the second tank ran 699 miles at 60 MPG. The second week, 7 days and 301 miles EV with 2/3ds using 'free' chargers around town, ~$2.50 out of pocket. In EV, it scoots around traffic without a problem using MG1 and MG2 as if they were a single motor. At a light off the line, it instantly, silently, shames the noise machines. Taken fast, the suspension flattens 'speed bumps'. Great visibility, it no longer feels like being in a foxhole and finally the outside, review mirrors cover the lanes on both sides. It is the first Prius strangers have volunteered that 'it looks good.' Unlike the driving folklore around our Gen-1 and Gen-3 Prius, the Prius Prime does everything without tricks. For example, engine warm-up, the bane of all Prius, the Prime handles by running in EV while the engine gently warms up. Then a couple of minutes later, the warmed engine is giving over 60 MPG in the city. The third tank went 2100 miles using EV around town. Free EVs chargers at stores and restaurants covered 1/3d of those miles. Then a recent, 400 mile round trip to Knoxville and back at 58 MPG. I used radar cruise control through thick fog following local (and loco) drivers. The odometer shows 6850 miles with lifetime 105 MPG.
Advanced 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
So far my favorite generation. The seats are very comfortable. It achieves what you want it to do. Which is great gas mileage. I do recommend a 240 V charger. I got one for less than $300 installed it myself and takes less than two hours to get a full charge of 22-25+ miles of electrical mode. The lane departure assist is fairly weak. I wish it was more assisting in putting the car back in the middle of the road. You do you have to wash your car a lot to keep the sensors clean so they operate properly. I do enjoy the adaptive cruise control. I drive a lot about 30,000 miles a year. I also love the heated steering wheel even more than the heated seats. I like the styling of the car. And the headlights are amazing at lighting up the road and giving you optimal visibility rain or shine. The menu is a little bit confusing at first but you'll get the hang of it. It does give you lots of options on how to customize your settings etc. the big downside is the Chi charger it only works on Samsung phones. Not iPhones. I used to own a 2010 Prius. But This car is far more better looking. The JBL stereo is just so so. Nothing fancy I thought it would be better. It does the job but I wouldn't mind a better upgrade. I average 55 to 60 miles a gallon using hybrid mode. And I get 22 to 25 miles on electrical after I plug it in. One downside is driving fast. After 85,000 miles it still is reliable. I don’t like The tpms monitors especially when you want to swap out and use winter tires that don’t have tpms. Light stays on and can only be reset by dealer or tire shops. You can’t self reset like you think you can. Glad the 2020 models are 5 seaters now. Been pretty trouble free and some things were done under warranty. Brakes still look great but I drive a lot of highway miles
Premium 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
The Prius Prime Premium trim offers the best price point from the 3 trim options available for the Prime. As a plug in hybrid the Prime is eligible for a $1,500 rebate from the state of California and up to $4,502 in tax credits. A full electric charge consistently gives me over 30 miles of city driving. The hybrid system is also impressive and I have been able to get an average of 87 mpg on a 10 mile round trip in the city. Overall after 1600 miles driven the car is averaging 73mpg. The electric engine has a good pick up while the hybrid system is a lot more sluggish when starting from 0. The big touchscreen, wireless charging and Bluetooth integration with your smartphone are other nice features. On the negative side the Prime only seats 4 passengers, doesn't carry a spare tire but has a flat repair kit instead and has a reduced cargo space when compared to the regular Prius.
Premium 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Great interior layout. Wonderful screen suite with lots of options on info to display. Really like the 11" screen with ability to have map on top half and something else on bottom with music title and artist along very bottom. Speedometer in middle of dash works well and helps inside of vehicle seem even more roomy. Driver cockpit is spacious and well designed (I'm a 6'2" man with a few extra pounds on my frame). Gas savings work like a charm. Babying it, I'm able to get a combined 58 mpg (based on real miles divided by gas put into tank and not just the trip computer which can suffer from 1/x issues for small x for even average trips ~40 miles where x is the gas consumed). That 58 mpg was without plugging in to charge for full EV mode. Plugging in is simple and running in full EV mode, the car runs like a champ. Just don't expect Camaro performance, but who would ever think that way about a Prius Prime anyways? Overall range > on a single tank is wonderful, especially since my work commute is 90 miles round trip -- I'm back to being able to fill up once a week instead of every fourth day. Bought in Dec 2016.
Features & Specs
Our experts like the Prius Prime models:
- Intelligent Clearance Sonar
- This collision avoidance system applies the brakes at speeds below 10 mph if it detects a potential crash.
- Safety Connect
- This subscription-based emergency assistance telematics system includes a variety of services.
- Blind-Spot Monitoring