Feeds
95%
Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid car

Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid car review

A huge leap forward for the world's most popular hybrid

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Government approval

The Plug-in also feels a faster car. The electric motor may be no more powerful and headline performance similar (0-60 in 11.4 seconds and a top speed of 112mph) but given there is invariably more juice available, the electric motor can lend its 207Nm shoulder to the wheel more often and for longer. Also, when you put your foot down in the Prius Plug-in to overtake, you still accelerate more strongly than the standard car, even though the engine doesn’t rev as hard. This makes for an altogether more enjoyable and rapid motoring experience.

Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid car

Tailgate design good for drag, less so for visibility

How does all this equate to economy and CO2 emissions? Officially the Plug-in returns 134.5mph and emits 49g/km in plug-in mode and 76.4mpg and 85g/km in hybrid mode. The first figure is effectively meaningless as it depends entirely on how many miles more than the EV range you cover between charges. In hybrid mode, I found I was averaging over 60mpg. Given its 9.9 gallon fuel tank, the Prius can cover more than 600 miles between fill-ups and charges, significantly further than the Vauxhall Ampera with its 7.7 gallon capacity.

There is a premium to pay for all this extended electric range goodness though. While the basic Prius will set you back from £21,600 the Plug-in costs £32,895. However, it does qualify for the £5,000 government e-car grant and comes with a host of extras including the touch screen Toyota Touch & Go navigation system, a very nice eight-speaker low power JBL stereo and parking cameras.

Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid car

The front end is a little different to basic Prius, but you'd never notice

Take all that into consideration and you are paying around £4000 more for the lithium-ion battery which, in my book, makes it the clear choice if you are in the market for a hybrid of any sort. Despite the lower EV range, I’d take the Plug-in Prius over the Ampera because it feels like a more accomplished engineering approach to extended-range EV motoring. It’s cheaper too.

Verdict

RH Recommended Medal

If current hybrids leave you with the feeling that, as an engineering concept, they are a bit half-baked, the new Prius Plug-in could be the car for you. The much increased electric-only driving range and improved electric hybrid assistance have turned the Prius into the car I have always thought it should be and, indeed, wanted it to be. Colour me impressed. ®

More Car Reviews

Peugeot
508 RXH estate
Volkswagen Up! Vauxhall Ampera Hyundai Veloster Renault Twizy

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

95%
Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid car

Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid car review

Toyata gets it right by giving the world’s most popular hybrid a much better electric driving range.
Price: £32,895 before UK Govt £5,000 e-car rebate RRP

More from The Register

next story
Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
BEST BATTERY EVER: All lithium, all the time, plus a dash of carbon nano-stuff
We have found the Holy Grail (of batteries) - boffins
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
Bad back? Show some spine and stop popping paracetamol
Study finds common pain-killer doesn't reduce pain or shorten recovery
Forty-five years ago: FOOTPRINTS FOUND ON MOON
NASA won't be back any time soon, sadly
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.