Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback
Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback
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Edmunds' Expert Review
by the Edmunds Experts
- Outstanding fuel economy
- notably quieter and better-riding than past iterations
- generous cargo space
- significantly improved driving position.
- Less backseat legroom than before
- offset gauges out of driver's direct line of sight
- polarizing styling.
For 2016 the Toyota Prius has been fully redesigned.
Look no further than the 2016 Toyota Prius if fuel economy is what you're after. But you'll also enjoy more sophisticated ride and handling qualities and a quieter powertrain. Going green with a Prius has never been better.
Notably, we picked the 2016 Toyota Prius as one of Edmunds' Best Used Cars.
Calculate my fuel costs
Cost to DriveCost to drive estimates for the 2016 Toyota Prius Two 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT) and comparison vehicles are based on 15,000 miles per year (with a mix of 55% city and 45% highway driving) and energy estimates of $3.35 per gallon for regular unleaded in Virginia.
Monthly estimates based on costs in Virginia
Avg. Compact Car
The fully redesigned 2016 Toyota Prius further cements the model's reputation as the most fuel-efficient hybrid car you can buy. But the company that dominates the hybrid sales market is not coasting on its success. Toyota turned its attention to refining the rest of the car, with impressive results. At the same time, Toyota produced a radically different exterior design that many of us find challenging to like, though whether Prius fans will love it or hate it remains to be seen.
The redesigned 2016 Prius has styling unlike anything else, unless you count the hydrogen-powered Toyota Mirai, which seems to have been the inspiration.
The essential appeal of the Prius, of course, lies in its fuel economy, and for 2016 the numbers are indeed impressive, with an EPA combined rating of 52 mpg for the standard car. But there is one hybrid that can beat it, and that machine is the new Prius Eco, a fuel-economy-oriented variant (as if the Prius needed one) that is rated at a whopping 56 mpg combined. As an added bonus, the gas engine is now noticeably quieter when it comes to life, and it sounds less strained during hard acceleration.
But there's plenty more to recommend the new Prius than just the powertrain. The previous Prius' odd upright driving position is no more, replaced by a lower, more natural orientation that makes the car feel less like a science experiment. There's more front leg- and headroom, too, although a couple inches of rear legroom have been lost. The payoff is found in the cargo bay, which grows by 14 percent. Hybrid credentials aside, the Prius has long been a smart pick due to its hatchback practicality, and for 2016 it's even more practical than before.
As for the car's underlying architecture, a lower and wider stance combines with the new double-wishbone rear suspension to improve the car's ride and handling. Bumps are now more readily absorbed, and the steering's added heft is reassuring. This new Prius is still not speedy or all that exciting to drive, but there are far fewer failings to overlook. It's a pleasant car to drive in its own right.
With these refinements, the Prius also has fewer peers than ever before. Honda has shelved its slow-selling Insight, and no other automaker is attempting a Prius rival. At this point it's a matter of size, mpg, configuration and, yes, styling. Is the 2016 Prius hatchback big enough, or do you want the extra passenger space of a midsize sedan that has a trunk? If so, the 2016 Ford Fusion Hybrid or the 2016 Toyota Camry Hybrid might be worth a look. If a plug-in hybrid is more to your liking, the redesigned Chevrolet Volt is pretty impressive. But for a regular hybrid, we highly recommend the 2016 Toyota Prius.
Performance & mpg
As before, the new 2016 Toyota Prius is powered by a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine and a pair of electric motor/generators. Their outputs are blended in a unique electronically controlled continuously variable transmission (CVT) that feeds as much as 121 horsepower to the front wheels. Light to moderate braking transforms one of the electric motors into a generator to keep the hybrid battery topped up.
In Edmunds track testing, a 2016 Prius Three accelerated from zero to 60 mph in 9.8 seconds, a few tenths quicker than the outgoing model but 2.1 seconds slower than the last Camry Hybrid sedan we tested. The upside is an EPA fuel economy rating of 52 mpg combined (54 city/50 highway). Our on-road testing of a Prius Three proved that this rating can be readily matched or beaten. Those looking for ultimate frugality can turn to the new Prius Two Eco, which earns an astonishing rating of 56 mpg combined (58 city/53 highway).
Every 2016 Toyota Prius comes standard with antilock disc brakes, stability and traction control, front side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, a driver knee airbag and a passenger seat cushion airbag. A rearview camera also comes standard.
Blind spot monitoring with cross-traffic alert comes standard on the Prius Four and Four Touring. The Toyota Safety Sense package includes full-speed adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning and lane departure warning and intervention. It's standard on the Prius Three Touring and Four Touring and optional on the Three and Four.
The Safety Connect system that can be added to the Prius Four and Four Touring is subscription-based (with a one-year free trial) and includes automatic collision notification, stolen vehicle locator and one-touch access to roadside and emergency assistance.
In Edmunds brake testing, a Prius Three came to a halt from 60 mph in 120 feet, which is solidly average.
The 2016 Prius is just slightly quicker than before, so it's not going to win any speed contests. That's perfectly acceptable in light of its maximum-mpg mission. The new Prius powertrain is more evocative of a full-on electric vehicle than ever. Part of this is due to improved noise suppression: You don't hear the engine as much when it is running. But the system also stays in EV propulsion mode more of the time, provided you're not a leadfoot.
The all-new Prius drives better than the nameplate's reputation might lead you to believe.
On diverse real-world roads, the Prius is even easier to drive than before, with smoother-acting brakes and a bit more reassuring heft to the steering. The new double-wishbone suspension is far more adept at soaking up road imperfections and quelling body motions than before, and it's also an effective road noise filter.
The 2016 Prius has a more conventionally laid out interior than its predecessor. A traditional center console between the seats contains cupholders, a shallow storage bin (home of the wireless phone-charging pad) and an armrest. The stubby shifter with its separate Park button remains, and the speedometer and gauge array still sit high in the center of the dash. A new head-up display option can present the most crucial information directly in front of the driver.
The 2016 Toyota Prius trades the last generation's sporty wraparound cockpit for a cabin with a more spacious feel.
Materials quality feels appropriate, with interesting seat fabrics and leatherette materials showing up on lower trim levels. But the choice of pearl white as a prominent center console accent color is sure to be polarizing. And though some legacy Prius design quirks remain (as well as one or two new ones), the layout and control placement are generally easy to understand and use.
The intuitive 7-inch touchscreen upgrade responds quickly to commands. A clumsy Entune app is necessary for high-level smartphone integration, but you can do without and still have a satisfying experience via the USB or Bluetooth audio connections. Bluetooth pairing, incidentally, has been greatly simplified.
Perhaps the biggest change involves the driving position, which features a lower seat with a less upright posture and more maximum head- and legroom despite a roof line that's almost an inch lower. The view out is still clear thanks to a lower cowl and side glass. And the telescoping steering wheel now has ample range of adjustment, with simplified control buttons that have a more positive feel.
But more than 2 inches of rear legroom has been lost. The remaining space is still enough for most families, but the Prius may not be the choice it once was among taxi drivers. The payoff is increased luggage capacity, which stands at 24.6 cubic feet, a full 3 cubic feet more than the last model. The Prius Two Eco and Prius Four twins lack a spare tire, which lowers the floor and raises their luggage capacity to a cavernous 27.3 cubic feet.
2016 Toyota Prius models
The 2016 Toyota Prius is a four-door hatchback that seats five passengers, and it comes in six trim levels: Two, Two Eco, Three, Three Touring, Four and Four Touring. The compact Prius C and larger Prius V are different models covered in separate reviews.
Standard features found on the Prius Two include 15-inch alloy wheels, automatic LED headlights, LED running lights and taillights, heated mirrors, keyless entry (driver door only) and ignition, automatic climate control, dual 4.2-inch driver information screens, cruise control, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, cloth upholstery, a height-adjustable driver seat, a 60/40-split folding rear seat, a 6.1-inch touchscreen display, a rearview camera, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, voice recognition with Siri Eyes Free and a six-speaker audio system with a USB port, an auxiliary audio jack and a CD player.
The more efficient Prius Two Eco is fitted with ultralow-rolling-resistance tires, two-tone wheel covers, a lighter lithium-ion hybrid battery, a lightweight inflation kit instead of a spare tire and illuminated keyless entry on three doors. The rear wiper that comes standard on the other trims is deleted here.
Inside the Prius Three you'll find leatherette steering wheel and armrest trim, white interior accents, a wireless phone charging pad (compatible phone case not included) and the Toyota Entune premium infotainment system with a 7-inch touchscreen, navigation, satellite radio, HD radio, real-time data (traffic, weather, fuel prices, sports, stocks) and access to apps like Pandora, iHeartRadio, OpenTable and Yelp via a paired smartphone running the Entune app.
Sleek automatic climate controls share space with Toyota's familiar touchscreen infotainment system in the 2016 Prius.
The Prius Four comes with a blind spot monitor, rear cross-traffic alert, automatic wipers, leatherette upholstery with contrasting white stitching, heated front seats, a power driver seat with adjustable lumbar, seatback storage pockets and a rear cargo cover.
Standard equipment on the Three Touring or Four Touring includes everything on the corresponding Three or Four plus 17-inch alloy wheels, foglights, LED clearance lights, unique rear bumper styling and leatherette upholstery with contrasting blue seat stitching. Both also come standard with the Toyota Safety Sense package, which includes full-speed adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning and intervention, a pre-collision warning system and automatic high beams.
The Prius Three and Four can be upgraded with the Advanced Technology package, which consists of a sunroof, a head-up display and the Toyota Safety Sense equipment found on Touring models.
Finally, the Prius Four and Prius Four Touring can be equipped with the Premium Convenience package, which includes JBL 10-speaker premium audio, a self-parking system and Safety Connect emergency services.
Read what other owners think about the Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback.
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most helpful consumer reviews
5 out of 5 stars
Prius 4 Touring- good and bad
Marianne McNair, 03/19/2016
2016 Toyota Prius Four Touring 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
We replaced a 8 year old Prius with a 2016 Prius 4 touring. We loved our old Prius and find some of the changes in the new a little quirky. The white console accents- really? White cupholders? i give them another week before they get stained with coffee. Our old prius was noisy, and this new one also has a lot of road noise. The roof peaks over the front seats and they feel wonderfully … roomy. The back seats are a bit squishy on head room. The cargo room in the back seems bigger than in the older car. The new safety features- like blind spot monitoring and lane departure are wonderful. The car handles well and feels zippy. The range- 800 or so miles- on a tank of gas is incredible. The screens are easy to read. The navigation system displays on the main console screen, but also can show directional instructions up by the speedometer.
5 out of 5 stars
Love these cars
Bruce Homeyard, 07/12/2016
2016 Toyota Prius Three 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
I've always driven sports/sporty cars, 65 Sunbeam Tiger, '70 Datsun 240Z, (30 years of driving station wagons) and 10 years of Pontiac Fieros. I know how a car should handle, and I learned to drive very smoothly and so have always gotten the most mpg out of a car. At 65, when I retired in 2011, I decided that I didn't want to be that 'old guy' driving the 20 year old Buick. I had been … following the Prius since its intro and finally decided that Toyota had gotten it right and purchased a Prius 3. Since then every time I get to the end of the warranty (about 18-24 months) I get a new one. Loved the handling (for a sedan) and have pitched it around Watkins Glen race track. In power mode my Prius did the published 10.1 0-60 and that's quite quick for a lower cost sedan with a 95 bhp motor. But the electric motor kicks in like a F-1 KERS when you hit the pedal or Power mode button. The interior was clean and functional with comfortable seats and the all electronic dash, monitoring and mid-dash displays. All the bells and whistles. The only real objections I had with the '11, 13, and, '15 models were the rear window wiper bar, (you don't notice it after a while and it doesn't really hamper vision) and the safety limitations on function use, like GPS or address searches while driving. Heck, if it can tell the passenger doesn't have the seat belt buckled, it should be able to tell you have a 'navigator' to use those functions and not impair a lone driver's safety performance. Additionally Toyota needs to adjust lighting....low beams are too bright and way too many folks think you have high beams on. I find myself driving in the 'parking light' position which puts plenty of light on the road using the DRL bulbs. Don't get confused if you use the DRL lights in daylight and then have them on at dusk. For some reason Toyota thinks oncoming traffic needs to see you coming at dusk/ dawn/ rain but not traffic behind you. With DRL the tail lights don't light up, only brake lights, ('Hey buddy, you're tail lights don't work.") so cars behind won't see you in fog. Mpg on those cars was (not by Toyota's calculator, which is always 2-3 mpg optimistic) combined city/hgwy; '11-50.9, '13-48.8, and '15-48.0. My new wife and change in driving patterns are likely the reason for the slight decreases. When I saw the 2016, I wasn't impressed with the redesign as it looked too much like everything else now than before and a little too angular with less character for me. The seats are narrower and lower, and I'm a big, old guy, so I prefer the older ones, but I've gotten used to the newer. The hood is chopped and easier for the driver (especially shorter ones) to see the actual front of the car. The back-up cam is improved also. The dash is more stylish, readouts, center console, shifter and cup holders improved. Toyota switched the positions of the battery and gas tank and lowered the car a little, so there's no longer as much leg room in the rear, unless the driver and passenger are short. The rear storage area is a little smaller too and the car now has a spare tire, but it still allows a lot of bags of recycling stuff when the seats are folded down. I prefer the old package cover system. The interior is more directed to a younger crowd, but everything is very easy to read and reach; and sun glare on the dash is no longer a problem. Ride and handling are improved, road noise down and the doors no longer sound like tin. The CVT is great and the drive choices have changed. The old system was Evo or Power, The new system has an EV mode (strictly battery), or a Drive mode, which gives a choice of Normal, Evo or Power. I'm really not sure what Normal is as I only use Evo and Power is just as easily obtained with your right foot as the CVT just sees it like passing gear in an older car. No trouble passing slower traffic and if you don't use the brakes on hills, you're soon doing 60-70 as it coasts along upping the mpg and recharging the battery, It seems like the ABS has been improved with less frequent easy 'lock-up'. I've find the Prius hi-mile tires (all years) iffy in the rain ( I never tailgate) and last year tried a used set of 215/40x17 Nitto Neogen tires with a more aggressive tread for snow. A little better for that, but they were way better for stopping in the rain and no appreciable change in mpg. With all of this, I expected the car to have gotten 'heavier' with less mpg. But no, and I don't know how Toyota did it but for the first 3000 miles I've had the car my best tank was 63.0, the worst 57.1, overall for 3k 60.8. This is by my calculation not Toyota's which says 63.5. We took the 2016 from PA to New Orleans and back on a 12 day vaca.... 2970 miles, 53.8/mpg, $108 for gas. Update at 32k (real) gas mileage is 55.5 combined. Love these cars and cant' wait for the '18 and just hope they don't stick on one of those 'big mouth bass' grills that seem so popular. I'd rate the first 3 as 8/10. The 2016 is a 9/10 to me.
5 out of 5 stars
Best Prius so far
Bill M., 04/28/2016
2016 Toyota Prius Four 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Update Nov 3 2022 - now 80,663 niles. As the tires have worn, mileage has continued to improve. Currently getting about 59 mpg per fill-up. The Continentals hardly look worn, however - plenty of tread left even with 30,000 miles on them. No repairs yet and the car still runs perfectly. The driver technology package was a great purchase - especially the rear cross traffic alert and … the blind spot warning. Headlights are great. Looking forward to next year when the next generation Prius comes out - it will be my fourth Prius, Update May 1, 2021 - now 66,120 miles. I remain very happy with the car. Changed the original tires at 50,000 and put on Continentals. Though they were supposed to be low rolling resistance, mileage immediately dropped about six mpg. As the tires have worn a bit, mileage has improved. Now, 16,000 miles after the tire change, mileage has improved. Still not quite where it was before the tire switch. In our current spring weather, I average about 59 mpg (real world) with the electronics reporting 62 mpg. I recently replaced the "regular" battery. The car has not needed any repairs. It looks and runs as if new. I'm constantly pleased with all the electronics and safety features. And that this generation got rid of the typical shift level and went back to the toggle on the dash, freeing up a lot of useful space. Lastly, I gave my previous generation (2012) Prius to my son when I bought my present car. The 2012 has 208,000 miles and has needed no major repairs. Atupdate - May 1, 2018 - now 33, 131 miles and still super-pleased with the car. Warm weather mileage on my commute remains about 62 mpg by actual measurement. Winter drops the mileage about 5 mpg. No repairs or complaints. My favorite aspects of the car (besides the mileage) remain the terrific driver assistance features esp rear cross traffic alert and blind spot warning, great headlights, and useful dash electronics including the heads up display. Compact and easy to drive yet there is plenty of room for a baby seat and a booster seat in the back for my granddaughters. Just a wonderful car! Oct 29, 2016 - 10,600 miles on the car and I'm still delighted with it. Mileage has averaged 62 mpg -- by actual measurement, which is about 3 mph lower than the dash readout. My daily commute is 60% highway and 40% local roads but not much bumper to bumper. I always drive in ECO and drive sedately but at or above speed limit and definitely not hypermile-ing. No mechanical problems with the car. Still like the same features as in the original review - esp great headlights, comfy interior, enough power, great but touchy brakes, and esp love the rear cross traffic alert, the auto braking, and other driver tech package features. Original review: I have 2600 miles on a 2016 Prius Four. I have previously owned a 2007 Prius and currently still own a 2012 Prius, which my son now drives. Though I've been hugely satisfied with the previous generations, this 4th gen Prius is even better. The gas mileage is averaging 60-62 mpg over the 2600 miles by actual measurement (not via the electronic read-out which is about 2.5 mpg higher). I don't accelerate or brake hard but I drive at or above the speed limit. My commute is 60% highway 40% city driving. The car accelerates a little faster than the previous gen. I got both the Advanced Tech package and the deluxe equipment package. The interior is very nice though not Lexus luxury. Great JBL sound system. Power driver seat with excellent power lumbar. The nav touchscreen is large and is not washed out in bright sun light. Speedo etc is not located so much differently than previous generations and is easy to adjust to. Headlights are fantastic - super bright, automatic low/high beams plus DRL. Nice heads up display on the windshield - easily seen but not distracting and you can turn it off if you want. When using the nav, the heads up display shows turn arrows. Neat! The dynamic cruise control, lane departure warning, and blind spot warning are highly useful. The best tech feature for me is the rear cross traffic alert, which greatly eases the worry about slowly backing out of a spot with obscured side vision. It detects cars 2-3 seconds before they cross behind you, leaving plenty of warning to brake. Large color backup monitor - via nav screen. Toyota wisely moved the transmission lever back to the dash and improved and lengthened the armrest. My 2007 had the best armrest ever made and then the 2012 backslid to a center console with trans lever. The 2016 corrected the error. Cons: not many and not very bothersome. The rear legroom is a bit less but still adequate. The rear headrests fold down - much like the 2012 -- so the rear visibility is about the same. No spare - not a deal breaker - so a little more rear cargo space. The brakes are touchy. Wind and road noise are supposedly better than previous models but seem the same to me (i.e. perfectly acceptable). The driver position is a bit lower than the 2012 - visibility isn't hindered as the window sills are lower - but I have easily adjusted (while admittedly preferring the old, higher level) On balance, this is a very significant upgrade. The tech package is worth every penny. Note that the Prius Four Touring does not have a sun-roof.
5 out of 5 stars
Great, underappreciated car
J M Hlgrt, 05/23/2016
2016 Toyota Prius Four 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
The car is really great. Dealers are all over the place with regards to familiarity with it, however. More upscale features such as sun roof, GPS, power seat and heated seats are indeed available in the four trim level, but those require a bit of effort (worth it) to find. That's where the quality of your dealer matters. Back to the car. The dashboard and roof are relatively low, giving … you a great view of the road around you. And I really like the sunroof - it sits far enough forward and i wide enough that you really feel the presence of the sky. I had a 2007 Prius 5 which survived 251,000 and was still getting 47 mpg until we sold it. Since I posted original review my mileage on the new Prius kept getting better and better. I use ECO mode and am a pretty efficient driver, but still... It crept past 54, then 55, 56, 57, 58 and seems to be settling at 59 mpg! It's crazy! 200 miles and the tank is like 3/4 full.
2016 Toyota Prius video
[MUSIC PLAYING] SPEAKER: Here's the new 2016 Toyota Prius. It's a completely new car on a completely new platform that will underpin a couple other future Toyota models coming up. Now, you can see they really emphasized design and styling on here. They wanted to differentiate their hybrid and eco-cars from the rest of the lineup. Now, you might wish that they could differentiate them by making them look more attractive, but Toyota decided to go a different route. The least you can say, it certainly stands out. But there's good stuff happening underneath the sheet metal. They've redone a lot of the hybrid system, they've moved stuff around, they've lightened it up. So power's actually decreased down to 121 horsepower. But fuel economy is up, and Toyota says it should be just as fast as the previous model because of the way they've been able to make the hybrid system work. It should be more efficient, less power, but still give you the same acceleration. Fuel economy is 52 miles per gallon around there, where this eco-model will actually do 56 miles per gallon. Now, that may sound good, but what happens with fuel economy is the higher the rating gets, actually, the less it matters, because you get diminishing returns when you go from 52 to 56. The jump from 30 to 40 is actually more significant, so the premium you pay to get the 56 actually takes a lot more time to work off. But that's for your accountant to figure out. Other stuff, the rear suspension. They've changed it from a torsion beam to a more sophisticated rear suspension setup, which should make it nicer to drive, more fun to drive quick around corners, and also give you some more ride comfort too, because it has a bit more sophistication in there. They've also relocated a couple of components of the hybrid system, most importantly, the battery. Where it used to sit in the rear cargo area, now it sits underneath the rear seat. That opens up a lot more cargo space back here. So there's a lot more interesting stuff happening inside, especially with regards to design. So let's take a look. So pretty standard layout for the Prius. It's at least the stuff that you can only expect if you've ever sat inside a Prius. As in, there's no gauges in front of the steering wheel, which is kind of a bummer if you like your gauges directly in front of you. No, Toyota puts the gauges up here. Your speedometer and all that stuff is listed up here, and that really helps if you want to sell cars in right-hand drive markets, because you don't have to make an entirely new dash, you could just keep this one. Now, there's this white stuff lining all around. And also, you can get the center console to be white too. And I guess they're trying to go for something that looks like a smartphone. But I'm not sure if I like it too much. Whether you like it is up to you to decide. There's no key in this, so we can't actually turn on a lot of the features here, which is kind of a bummer. But you have an entertainment system here, which we understand works a lot better than previous models. It should be pretty fast and should be pretty snappy. And we look forward to giving it more of a test in the future. Now, let's see if we can find some power outlets for mobile devices and stuff. Here we go. We have a USB port and an AUX input jack, and a 12 volt power plug there. Now, in the center console, it looks like more storage. Let's take a look at the back seat. Now, back seat passengers, you don't get rear vents, but you do get a 12 volt plug, which is nice. Back seat room is pretty spacious. My knees aren't touching the seat in front of me, my headroom is not touching the roof. And the seat feels comfortable enough. So that's it from the interior. Love it or hate it, that's the new Toyota Prius. And to find out more, go to edmunds.com.
2016 Toyota Prius Review
A new platform, revamped interior and 55 mpg should make the 2016 Toyota Prius the iconic gas-electric, go-to choice among hybrids.
2016 Prius Highlights
|Combined MPG||52 MPG|
|Cost to Drive||$80/month|
|Drivetrain||front wheel drive|
|Warranty||3 years / 36,000 miles|
NHTSA Overall Rating5 out of 5 stars
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
- Frontal Barrier Crash RatingOverall4 / 5Driver4 / 5Passenger4 / 5
- Side Crash RatingOverall5 / 5
- Side Barrier RatingOverall5 / 5Driver5 / 5Passenger5 / 5
- Combined Side Barrier & Pole RatingsFront Seat5 / 5Back Seat5 / 5
- RolloverRollover4 / 5Dynamic Test ResultNo TipRisk Of Rollover10.7%
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
- Small Overlap Front Driver-Side TestGood
- Small Overlap Front Passenger-Side TestNot Tested
- Moderate Overlap Front Test – OriginalGood
- Moderate Overlap Front Test – UpdatedNot Tested
- Side Impact Test – OriginalGood
- Side Impact Test – UpdatedNot Tested
- Roof Strength TestGood
- Rear Crash Protection / Head RestraintGood
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More about the 2016 Toyota Prius
More About This Model
An all-new version of the popular hybrid four-door hatchback, the 2016 Toyota Prius is more efficient and better-driving than ever before.
What Is It?
It used to be that the Prius was a niche vehicle, a rolling proclamation of counterculture eco-mindedness. Today the Prius is so ubiquitous that it is regarded as the default commuter choice in the minds of many consumers. With the 2016 Prius, the fourth generation of Toyota's standard-bearing nameplate, the formula remains the same. It's still a four-door hatchback with a hybridized four-cylinder engine that drives the front wheels.
There's a wider variety of trim levels on offer now. The 2016 model will be offered in six flavors: Two, Two Eco, Three, Three Touring, Four and Four Touring. "Touring" trim levels bring more equipment while the "Eco" model is even more miserly with fuel than the base version.
What's New Under the Skin?
The 2016 Toyota Prius is built on an all-new platform that will underpin several future Toyota models, including the next Corolla. The new Prius rides on the same 106.3-inch wheelbase as the outgoing model, though the new car is a hair lower and wider and a couple of inches longer.
Its new structure is stiffer, too, which — along with relocating the hybrid battery from the cargo area to under the backseat — facilitated the adoption of a new rear suspension layout. Gone is the old Prius' pedestrian twist-beam rear suspension. In its place is a double-wishbone layout, the promise of which is enhanced wheel control for improved ride and handling.
Roughly speaking, the double-wishbone arrangement added back about 100 pounds that were offset by weight-saving measures elsewhere in the 2016 Prius' construction. The end result is that curb weight hasn't changed significantly; depending on trim level, the new Prius weighs between 3,010 and 3,080 pounds (the 2015 Prius is 3,042 pounds). Though the new car is no lighter, its center of gravity was lowered by an inch, another suggestion that the new Prius will drive more keenly.
What's New Under the Hood?
A revised version of the existing 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine ekes out more efficiency and delivers 95 horsepower and 105 pound-feet of torque. Combined with the revamped electrical side of the Prius' hybrid equation, the total system output is now 121 hp. This is actually less peak power than the outgoing model, which generated 134 total system horsepower.
Despite the power deficit and similar weight, Toyota says the new car's acceleration to 60 mph (10.6 seconds) matches the old car. What gives? Essentially, the new car draws more heavily from its electrical components at low vehicle speeds than does the outgoing model. Thus, the 2016 model's low-speed thrust is juicier, and this is enough to offset its peak power shortfall in the sprint to 60 mph.
What Else Is New?
A nickel-metal hydride (Ni-MH) battery is still employed, but only in the entry-level Two version. All other 2016 Prius models receive a lighter, more capable lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery pack. The less-costly Ni-MH battery (also employed in other global regions where Li-ion disposal/recycling is trickier) allows the base version of the new Prius to ring in at exactly the same base price as the 2015 model.
One characteristic familiar to hybrid owners is curiously absent in the 2016 Prius: There are no telltale high-voltage orange electrical cables under the hood. For 2016, engineers shrunk the inverter and power electronics so significantly that these components are now integrated directly into the top of the transaxle.
In the bargain, the orange cables and their attendant copper losses were jettisoned, reducing clutter and boosting electrical efficiency. So much space was liberated up front that the traditional 12-volt battery was relocated from the cargo area to the engine compartment. The continuously variable transaxle, too, was redesigned in the interests of packaging and slashing parasitic losses.
What About Its Fuel Economy?
Official EPA fuel economy numbers are still forthcoming, but Toyota's own projections rate the new Prius at 52 mpg combined (54 city/50 highway), a 2-mpg improvement over the outgoing model. Note that the 2016 Prius' numbers were divined in adherence of the EPA's more rigorous testing guidelines that take effect for 2017 models.
Eco models are projected to achieve 56 mpg combined (58 city/53 highway), courtesy of lower-rolling-resistance tires and a slight weight reduction. While the Eco's fuel-sipping ways are impressive, the savings may not pencil out for some buyers, as at today's fuel prices it would take more than a decade for the Eco model's fuel savings to pay off its $500 purchase premium over the base 2016 Prius.
How Does It Drive?
Our drive of the 2016 Prius was limited to the boulevards and freeways in Laguna Beach, California, but this much is clear: The new Prius picks up its feet with more sophistication than the old car. The ride quality has far less busy-ness at the rear and the car steers along your intended path more faithfully than the 2015 model we drove it back to back against.
It moves off the line briskly, leaving us with no reason to doubt Toyota's acceleration claims. It also blends its regenerative and friction brakes more seamlessly, and the engine has noticeably better noise isolation. Wind noise was prominent at the A-pillars, however.
The new car's newfound adroitness simply makes it drive like a more expensive car, and it's the kind of improvement that's noticeable even in routine driving well below the ultimate limit of tire grip. It's no sports car, of course, but the changes to the rear suspension have produced a real difference you can feel by the seat of your pants every time you drive it.
What's the Interior Like?
There's no question that the exterior styling, to be charitable, has a face only Mother Toyota could love. Fortunately, the revisions to the interior will be more universally well received. The first thing you notice is the new car's lower seating position. The hip point is a significant 2.3 inches lower, so sitting in a Prius no longer feels like you're perched atop a stack of phone books. Headroom is more generous than in the old car, too. There's a telescoping wheel as standard, but its adjustment range is limited.
The outgoing car's floating center console was binned, which opens up the sense of space in the cabin. Materials are now noticeably less cheap-looking (and feeling), while the full-color central information display is much easier to read than the outgoing monochrome blue-green affair.
Cargo volume has grown appreciably to 24.6 cubic feet (27.3 cubic feet for models without a spare tire), an increase of 3.0 cubic feet over the old Prius. This comes at the price of a decrease in backseat legroom.
What Features Come Standard?
Standard equipment on the 2016 Toyota Prius includes keyless entry, full LED lighting, a 6.1-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth compatibility and active grille shutters. Higher trim levels are equipped with power seats, 17-inch wheels, a more capable and larger multimedia system and wireless smartphone charging (assuming you have a Qi case).
Optional equipment available in various packages includes semi-automated parking, a moonroof and a head-up display. Tech-seeking buyers should turn their attention to the Prius Three and Four, which offer adaptive cruise control, automatic high beams and a collision prevention system that can detect and respond to pedestrians. These higher trim levels also have blind spot detection and rear cross-traffic alerts as standard equipment.
How Much Does It Cost?
Base prices range from $25,035-$30,835, both of which are unchanged from last year's car. Considering the tangible improvements made to the model, holding the line on pricing is a pleasant surprise.
What Competing Models Should You Also Consider?
Chevrolet Volt: All-new for 2016, it's a plug-in hybrid that has an impressive electric-only range that's easily extended by the efficient gasoline engine.
Mazda 3: Delivers top-shelf fuel economy among non-hybrids, along with sharp dynamics and a sense of style inside and out.
Why Should You Consider This Car?
When fuel economy tops your priority list, the Prius has been a traditional go-to choice, and the new car only reinforces its dominance in this regard. There's a host of new equipment available in the comprehensively upgraded cabin, yet the ride and handling improvements alone make it easily the most agreeable-driving Prius yet.
Why Should You Think Twice About This Car?
It's still on the slow side, and there's slightly less rear passenger space than before.
Edmunds attended a manufacturer-sponsored event, to which selected members of the press were invited, to facilitate this report.
Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback Overview
The Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback is offered in the following styles: Two 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT), Four 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT), Four Touring 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT), Three 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT), Three Touring 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT), and Two Eco 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT). Pre-owned Toyota Prius Hatchback models are available with a 1.8 L-liter hybrid engine, with output up to 121 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback comes with front wheel drive. Available transmissions include: continuously variable-speed automatic.
What's a good price on a Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback?
Price comparisons for Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback trim styles:
- The Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback Three is priced between $21,891 and$25,990 with odometer readings between 13635 and72827 miles.
- The Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback Two is priced between $18,582 and$23,991 with odometer readings between 34663 and100101 miles.
- The Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback Four Touring is priced between $21,998 and$26,590 with odometer readings between 40372 and108891 miles.
- The Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback Four is priced between $20,997 and$24,878 with odometer readings between 38353 and91699 miles.
- The Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback Two Eco is priced between $22,590 and$25,590 with odometer readings between 22124 and73093 miles.
- The Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback Three Touring is priced between $24,990 and$26,990 with odometer readings between 16061 and52210 miles.
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Which used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchbacks are available in my area?
Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback Listings and Inventory
There are currently 31 used and CPO 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchbacks listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $18,582 and mileage as low as 13635 miles. Simply research the type of used car you're interested in and then select a prew-owned vehicle from our massive database to find cheap used cars for sale near you. Once you have identified a used or CPO vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback.
Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2016 Toyota Prius Hatchback for sale near you.
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Should I lease or buy a 2016 Toyota Prius?
Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.
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