The Prius line is synonymous with hybrid fuel efficiency, and with the Toyota Prius Prime, this family of vehicles adds a new plug-in hybrid to the lineup. The Toyota Prius Prime is based on the Prius, but it uses a larger battery and is capable of traveling for up to 25 miles solely on electric energy. The Prius Prime replaces the previously available Prius Plug-in hybrid, and it made its debut in the 2017 model year.
The Toyota Prius Prime is in its first generation. It’s 6.5 inches wider than the Prius plug-in hybrid that was sold through 2015, and it rides almost an inch closer to the ground. Though the Prius Prime looks similar to the standard Toyota Prius, it brings some styling revisions to the mix.
The Toyota Prius Prime is a plug-in hybrid hatchback that seats four. All models utilize a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and front-wheel drive.
The Prius Prime’s sheet metal is distinguished by its aerodynamic design cues and low-slung stance. Standard LED projector headlights and LED daytime running lights brighten the road ahead. Though it shares its profile with the Prius, the Prius Prime has unique front and rear fascias, bumpers and lighting systems. Automatic grille shutters close when airflow to the radiator isn’t needed, and this helps improve fuel economy by reducing drag.
This Toyota’s cabin is roomy, with a clean and modern look. Both rows of seating offer good legroom for adults. The standard cloth-upholstered heated front seats offer reasonable amounts of comfort, with six-way adjustability for the driver and four-way adjustability for the front passenger. A standard tilt-and-telescoping steering column helps you attain an ideal position behind the wheel.
Toyota’s Prius Prime provides a smooth and frugal driving experience. A 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine is paired with an electric motor for a total output of 121 horsepower. Relative to the Prius, the Prius Prime has a larger and heavier battery, and this brings increased curb weight that makes the car a bit more ponderous than its sibling in daily motoring.
Base models come standard with amenities such as heated power-folding side mirrors, navigation, a rearview camera and Bluetooth connectivity. The list of available features includes synthetic leather upholstery, Qi-compatible wireless charging, a color head-up display, blind spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert.
The plug-in-hybrid segment has seen steady and sure growth in recent years. The Toyota Prius Prime should be cross-shopped against the Chevrolet Volt, Ford C-Max Energi, Ford Fusion Energi and Hyundai Sonata plug-in hybrid. Other choices in this segment seat more passengers (five versus the Prius Prime’s four), and the Chevy Volt delivers twice as much all-electric range as the Toyota. On the plus side, though, the Toyota Prius Prime offers exceptional cargo capacity, and it’s a good choice for those seeking a plug-in hybrid with this kind of utility.
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