Earlier this yr, we spent a while with the brand new Toyota Prius. There was rather a lot to love in regards to the new automotive, the fifth to bear its title—smooth appears and minimal gasoline consumption are the highlights. Right now, it is Prius Prime, the plug-in hybrid variant. Toyota may need been early to hybrids and uncomfortably late to battery electrical autos, however the Prius Prime straddles the road between the 2, providing a battery sufficiently big for many every day driving and a extremely environment friendly gas-burning powertrain for longer journeys.
A lot of what I wrote in regards to the not-Prime Prius applies to the plug-in, too. There are the identical smooth appears, with a steeply raked windshield and a much more cohesive design than the mannequin it changed—that one seemed like the results of two separate automotive designs that have been later crashed into one another. I am beginning to suppose that the automotive wants a entrance license plate to look proper—that little bump out on the fascia the place a plate is meant to connect appears somewhat apparent within the case of our Virginia-registered tester.
The $39,170 Prius Prime XSE Premium we examined would not look fairly as racy because the blue automotive we had in Could—largely, that is right down to the completely different design of alloy wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels with aerodynamic covers can be found with the Prius Prime SE ($32,350), however just like the XSE Premium, the mid-range XSE ($35,600) additionally rides on the larger 19-inch wheels. I point out this upfront as a result of in case you’re in search of essentially the most environment friendly possibility, the stripped-out base mannequin on small wheels has a decrease drag coefficient and runs extra economically.
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