Experienced by Adrian McQueen
Photography by Adrenaline Lifestyles
The Toyota Prius has been a game changer as soon as it hit the market. I am in the city a lot so I was excited to see how I would benefit from its size and well renowned gas mileage. As cities like my hometown of Washington DC become more developed and crowded every day, driving and parking become more of a task, than a routine. Toyota built the Prius to ease this burden.
In 1997, the Toyota Prius launched as a full hybrid electric automobile developed by Toyota. The Prius came on the scene as a 4-door sedan, but since 2003 has only been produced as a 5-door liftback. The Prius is now sold in over 90 markets, with Japan and the United States being its largest markets Based on smog-forming emissions, the Toyota Prius is rated as one of the cleanest vehicles sold in the US by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Air Resources Board (CARB).
The look of the Toyota Prius is unique and stands out wherever you go. The Prius Four has 17-inch blacked out alloy wheels, Piano-black side-skirt rocker panels and two-tone front and rear bumpers. The hatchback body style of the Prius means there’s plenty of room for cargo behind the second row. The aesthetics of the Prius serve a great purpose in aerodynamics.
The interior of the Prius has been updated with an eye-catching tablet style 11.6-inch touchscreen, heated front seats, and leatherette upper door trims and armrests. The Prius Four also has Entune Premium audio with navigation, Soft-touch synthetic leather steering wheel with audio control buttons, Backup Camera, Qi-compatible wireless smartphone charging, Siri Eyes Free, SiriusXM, a 4.2” color dual multi-info display and access to Toyota’s Entune App Suite. The JBL audio system delivers a nice thumping sound throughout the cabin. Unfortunately, there is no Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.
Driving thru town, I was able to get around smoothly and efficiently. The ride in the Prius is not thrilling or exhilarating, but it was not built for that. It is a practical, eco-friendly vehicle. It integrates its electric and gasoline propulsion sources and fully delivers on its promise of fuel efficiency. The Prius’s has excellent fuel-economy, with the EPA giving it 54 mpg in the city, 50 mpg on the highway and 51 mpg combined. Running in second to the Hyundai Ioniq “Blue”, the 2018 model year Prius Eco ranks as the second most fuel-efficient gasoline-powered car available in the US without plug-in capability.
The Prius is a bit sluggish when accelerating but will get up to speed a bit better in Sport mode. Powering the 2018 Prius is a 1.8-liter I-4 paired to an electric motor, a CVT, and a lithium-ion battery. Total system output is 121 hp.
The Prius did very well in its crash tests as a Top Safety Pick with Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). But IIHS now considers more criteria for its highest award, and the Prius failed to earn that designation this year. The Prius Four has yet to be rated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
Toyota’s eight-year or 100,000-mile hybrid-component warranty is an industry standard and matches up to its competitors. Competition to the Toyota Prius is the Hyundai Ioniq, Chevrolet Volt, Honda Insight, Ford C-Max and the Kia Niro. The Prius holds up well to them all. The Prius is a great choice for those that live in a major city and need a vehicle that is small and great on gas. Enjoy the photo gallery.