I am an extreme commuter and I would not have been able to do this without my beloved Prius. After 4 years I have about 147,000 miles on the car and have had zero problem so far. I average about 47 - 54 mpg depending on how fast I drive. If I drive 75 mph I will get about 45-47 mpg. If I drive 65 mph I would get around 52 mpg.
I still have the original brakes and my mechanic told me that it still has 75% of life left. This is due to regenerating braking and my most highway driving.
The OEM tires lasted 60k miles. I replaced them with the Michelin HydroEdge tires and after 87k they are still good for another 20k miles according to my mechanic.
I've waited a year to write this so as to have some experience with the car.
Was very hesitant to buy due to
fear of the unknown with the high voltage battery.
Can say now that this is not a concern as these fail rarely and with many miles and usually with at least a decade of time.
My dealership might replace 5-6 a year on the first generation (2001-2003), but 1-2 on this generation.
Not as expensive to replace as I thought, either, as I received quotes of $2500 parts and labor.
Realistically, that would be at least 12-15 years down the road.
I get about 44 mpg in the winter and 46-49 mpg in warm weather.
No repairs have been needed; easy to work on.
Hybrids are the shape of things to come, & from my test drives of available makes, Toy is on top of the game as usual. Driver & passenger comfort good with impressive haul space. Fun driving? Hey, it's a single gear electric car! Here's my honest take of pros & cons. The Prius is a great car for city, flat highways & perfect conditions. Its biggest downside is over engineered aerodynamics. Introduce a hill, kiss your mpg goodbye. Introduce wind, kiss your wife goodbye. Handles snow & ice superbly, gravel & bumps are Kryptonite. A quick car, after the initial hesitation from a standstill. Tires wear 30% faster. Dangerously quiet for pedestrians. Buy the service contract.
Standard 4dr Hatchback (1.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Good car, can carry loads of cargo, never needs repairs, needs snow tires for better traction, esp. for getting out of icy driveway with slight uphill slant, great traction with snow tires, front seats (cloth) not too comfortable for long road trips but perfectly OK for day-to-day driving, newer Prius versions have better seats, we get about 44 mpg overall consistently but originally got 46 mpg with original tires, original tires wore out very quickly (15k miles) but got good gas mileage, annoying that the doors tend to all lock by themselves when you shut off car (except for driver's door), lacks a pivoting sun visor (only goes in 2 directions), newer models have more up-front leg room, power window buttons and door lock buttons do not light up, very safe car for head-on collisions ( experienced head-on collision in 2004 Prius, which is of the same generation as 2008 Prius, and survived in quite good condition with just a few broken ribs and some vertibrea with slight cracks that had to be kept immobilized for 2-3 months just in case (2004 Prius was totalled).
We finally traded it in at 159,500 miles -- the only reason being that the front seats were not too comfortable for long drives. Other than that, this car has been fantastic. Nothing ever broke. Did replace the struts/shocks at some point -- maybe 85,000 miles (can't remember). Never did any brake work that I can recall. Changed the oil every 5k miles, and rotated tires every 5k miles (mostly). Added a tow rack (for carrying a bike rack) -- which was a very easy DIY project. Changed the 2 headlights myself (there was actually a recall on this, but I changed before the recall was issued.) Not very easy to change these bulbs unless you have tiny, tiny hands. Did not try out new Prius, but did try out 2017 Prius V. The seats are much more comfortable on the new Prius V, and the height of the seats is at least 3" higher than on the 2008 Prius. (Not sure how this compares to the standard 2017 Prius.) The entire Prius V is about 6" taller than our 2008 Prius. Ultimately, we decided to go with a Rav4 Hybrid as the replacement vehicle -- mainly due to the seat comfort issues, but also due to the fact that we would not have to have a separate set of snow tires -- since it is AWD. Also, it can tow. (The Prius V was very close in comfort, though, to the Rav4, and would likely be happy to drive on long road trips with the V -- but, we only tried the faux leather seats, as the material has a major impact on comfort. We got the faux leather seats in the Rav4.