Used Toyota Prius Hatchback (2009 - 2015) Review

Review by David Ross on
Last Updated: 25 Sep 2012
4
The third Toyota Prius may not look that different from its predecessor but thanks to several key improvements it's actually a big leap forward. Like before it's a hybrid, so uses a conventional petrol engine alongside an electric motor, but it is now a realistic alternative to low-emission diesel cars when it comes to performance and driving.
Toyota Prius Hatchback (09-15)
Superb economy, low emissions and zero road tax, responsive engine, plenty of rear passenger room, very well equipped, Prius Plug-in offers even lower emissions
Noisy under hard acceleration, steering column lacking in adjustment

New price range:

£18,360 - £35,450

Used price range:

£2,518 - £16,446

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Summary

Parkers Rating:

4 out of 5

The third Toyota Prius may not look that different from its predecessor but thanks to several key improvements it's actually a big leap forward. Like before it's a hybrid, so uses a conventional petrol engine alongside an electric motor, but it is now a realistic alternative to low-emission diesel cars when it comes to performance and driving.

No compromises

There's just one gearbox - an automatic CVT - but it has seamless changes while the 1.8-litre engine and electric motor deliver responsive performance. It's cleaner and more powerful than the previous Prius while in town it can operate purely in electric mode, using no fuel and with zero emissions. Unlike before, if you choose a Prius you don't have to make sacrifices in performance for the sake of owning a hybrid.

Prius Plug-in

The Prius Plug-in was introduced in 2012 and unlike the standard Prius you can charge the car from the household mains. It's still a petrol-electric hybrid and you can travel up to 15 miles and up to 51mph on electric power alone without using the petrol engine. The electric motor draws its power from a lithium-ion battery that you charge from the mains and a full charge takes about an hour and a half. The real advantage is that its CO2 emissions are 49g/km, but zero if you travel on electric power alone. Official average fuel economy is claimed to be an impressive 134.5mpg.

To plug-in or not to plug-in?

The Plug-in costs around £6,000 more to buy than the standard Prius even when you factor in a £5,000 government grant for electric vehicles. Still this isn't about cost, as the Prius Plug-in is about making a statement about your responsibilities toward the environment. You have a choice between the two but both fulfil the desires of a motorist with a conscience. Read the full Toyota Prius review for more details.

Parkers Ratings

Overall

4 out of 5

Performance

4 out of 5

Handling

3.5 out of 5

Comfort

4 out of 5

Practicality

4 out of 5

Behind the wheel

3.5 out of 5

Safety

4 out of 5

Reliability

4 out of 5

Running costs

4 out of 5

Green credentials

5 out of 5

Buying used

3.5 out of 5

Selling

3.5 out of 5

Equipment

4 out of 5

What owners say...

 Large rear hatch. Good cabin space.Flat floor with rear seats easily folded down. Easy to drive if somewhat weird at first.  

4 out of 5

John Quinn ,   06 Jun 2015    ... read more

 Easy to charge at home and can do most local trips on electric only.  

4 out of 5

Peter Farthing ,   14 Sep 2014    ... read more

 It's a mixed bag. The reversing camera replaces audible sensors which I sorely miss, would sooner have sensors and forget the camera.  

3 out of 5

Michael Dickinson ,   17 Nov 2013    ... read more

See all Owners' Reviews

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