Toyota Prius Review

By Deepak   |  October 31, 2013

Overview

Toyota has launched an all-new automobile Prius with the latest innovation in advanced automotive technology - the Solar Ventilation System. The Prius also features Easy Seat - transport solution for special needs of people.

The Prius has been making waves since it was introduced in 1997. It has set a new benchmark for hybrid cars blending the power of an engine and an electric motor in a remarkable way. It has the distinction of being the first mass production hybrid car in the world. The Prius has had a great impact on environment-conscience of the world and was recognized widely as a premier hybrid vehicle which never compromised on anything while delivering style, power and performance.


Powertrain & Performance

The 4-cylinder in-line Twin Cam 16-valve DOHC 98 bhp 1.8L 2ZR-FXE engine of the Prius is equipped with advanced technologies like the Atkinson-cycle, a cooled Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) system, electric water pump and intake-side Variable Valve Timing - intelligent (VVT-i) to increase the mileage. The power control unit of the car is made to optimise control of the DC power from the battery and AC power for driving the motor and generator and raises the battery voltage up to 650V. The total power output of the engine and the electric motor stands at 134 bhp and the Prius touches 100 km/h mark from zero in 10.96 seconds.

The Prius can be driven in three modes comfortably - Power mode, Eco Mode and EV (Electric Vehicle). The Electrically Controlled Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) delivers greater fuel efficiency. The notable feature of the Prius - Hybrid Synergy Drive (HSD) - yields smooth responsive driving performance, uses less fuel and cuts down harmful emissions as it optimises the operation of the highly efficient gasoline engine and power electric motor depending on the driving conditions.


Build & Styling

The Toyota Prius is equipped with a new design front grille, front bumper, headlamps, turn indicator and LED tail lamps. The headlamps and the LED tail lamps are power efficient. The Prius features stylish front projector type headlamps that illuminate road ahead brightly. The large front air dam makes a new style statement and the 15-inch alloy wheels are a symbol of dynamic driving experience.

Inside, the new Easy Seat is a customized swivel seat which provides transport solutions especially for mobility impaired. It ensures that a wide range of people, including those with special mobility needs will be able to use vehicles comfortably. The Easy Seat can be slid and turned with ease, allowing easy entry and exit for those with special mobility needs. It is recommended patients suffering from arthritis, knee related ailments etc.

The new Solar Ventilation System comes with a solar panel integrated on the moonroof for generation of electricity and using it to ventilate inside the cabin while parked. The Remote Air Conditioning System is made for the operation of the AC system by remote control before entering the car, lowering the temperature inside the car. The smart entry with push start is another important feature of the Prius. All doors can be locked by simply gripping a door handle and the hybrid system can be switched on by depressing the brake pedal and pushing the power switch.

The interior features a new JBL 8-speaker audio system with USB port and back monitor. The clear head up display, eco-drive monitor, electronic shift lever, centre meter display and comfortable interior space allure the passengers. The comfort quotient is high thanks to front relaxing seatbacks, auto air conditioning system which ensures quick cooling of the cabin. The front McPherson struts and the rear torsion beam suspension deliver strong stability, control and ride comfort. The seats are comfortable and convenient. The rear seats can be split 60/40. The luggage space is quite large and can hold three large golf bags.

The Prius is second to none in safety. It features the Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) for stable braking under all driving conditions. The Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and the Traction Control System (TCS) ensure that the vehicle is stable and under the driver’s control at all times. Toyota’s acclaimed Supplementary Restraint System (SRS) is equipped with front passenger airbag, side airbags and curtain shield airbags.

Pros and Cons

  • Pros

    • Environment-friendly Driving in 3 modes
    • Electrically Controlled Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
    • State-of-the-art JBL 8-speaker audio system
  • Cons

    • Pricey