The Prius Prime is a car made by the Japanese car manufacturer Toyota. It is a plug-in hybrid vehicle with about 25 miles of electric-only range.
It is the second generation of Prius plug-in car. The first generation was produced between 2012 and 2016, and the Prime has been in production since.
In this article, we’re going to take a look at the Prius Prime, and answer a few FAQs.
An Upgrade On A Best Selling Hybrid
The Prius Prime is essentially just a new and improved version of the much-loved hybrid, the Toyota Prius. In fact, the Toyota Prius is so loved that it’s the world’s best-selling hybrid car.
In many ways, the Prius Prime is the same as the regular Prius. It boasts the same excellent Toyota engineering and associated durability and has a jaw-dropping 640-mile driving range.
Add in great value, a sleek look, and family-friendly functionality, and you can see what has made the Prius so popular.
The Prius Prime takes the already very solid Prius base and improves it.
The most notable addition is a no-gas mode when the car is fully charged, allowing the Prime to become an EV for an effective range of about 25 miles.
If you bear in mind that some 75% of car journeys in the United States are under 10 miles or less, the Prius Prime gives you the option to take many of your day-to-day journeys without burning so much as a single drop of fuel.
Plug-in Hybrids: Best Of Both Worlds?
Although the Prius Prime con only drive on its battery for up to 25 miles, it is still primarily a hybrid vehicle.
That means that whilst the car still uses a petrol or diesel engine as its primary means of propulsion, it also has a battery and electric motor.
The primary purpose of the electric motor and battery is to improve the efficiency of the car’s engine, and boy does it in the case of the Prius Prime.
The Prime has an estimated MPG rate of 54 in hybrid mode, stretching to 55 MPG for city driving and falling slightly to 53 MPG for highway driving.
As we mentioned previously, that gives the Prius Prime about 640 miles of driving range, which is over 200 miles further than the longest-range entirely electric vehicle currently on the market.
In effect, you get the best of all worlds. For short journeys, you can run entirely in EV mode. The best thing about the Prime is that even in EV mode, the car has plenty of oomph, with the car able to reach speeds of up to 84mph.
That’s more than fast enough for a trip to the grocery store! And, of course, you’ll be saving yourself plenty of money on gas, too.
Toyota recommends running the car in EV mode as much as possible, which is better for both the environment and your pocket.
Should you want to go further, running the Prime in hybrid mode is an efficient driving experience.
The car will automatically favor electric power as much as possible, but in situations where maximum efficiency is best achieved by using the gasoline engine- as when driving uphill- the car will automatically switch to favor the engine.
Speaking of automatically switching, you needn’t worry about running flat whilst using the car’s EV mode.
When the battery runs down past a certain point whilst in EV mode, the Prius Prime will automatically switch back to hybrid mode. When the battery does run down, charging is a breeze, too.
The cable that comes with the Prius Prime plugs into any standard 120v household electrical outlet and takes just over 5 hours to fully charge.
Aside from EV mode and enhanced fuel efficiency, the Prime also boasts several other improvements on other Prius Models.
The car has a sleek and attractive, but more importantly, unique design both front, and rear. The Prime wasn’t just designed with aesthetics in mind, either.
The car is made from carbon fiber reinforced polymer, a first for Toyota, and this makes the hatch lightweight and easier than ever to lift.
The car also has an aerodynamically formed rear glass and hatch, which is a significant leap forward versus older Prius models.
The Prime also has state-of-the-art quad-LED headlights, LED tail lights, and signals, for improved night driving vision and capability versus older Prius models.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I Need To Plug In The Prius Prime To Use It?
No, you don’t! This is one of the key advantages a plug-in hybrid like the Prius Prime has over completely electric vehicles.
Even if you forget to plug the car in overnight, the car will function perfectly well the next morning so long as there is gas in the tank. This, of course, is not the case with EVs, which always need charge to run.
Do I Always Need Gas In The Tank?
Given that the Prius Prime has an EV mode, you might think that you don’t necessarily need gas to drive the car.
However, that is not the case. Even in EV-only mode, the car still needs gasoline in the tank to function properly.
How Much Does A Prius Prime Cost?
The standard Prius Prime starts at $28,220, which is about average as hybrids go. The top-end Prius Prime will set you back $34,000 or more.
Is The Prius Prime Eligible For Federal Or State Financial Incentives?
Many states, along with the federal government, have been offering tax credits and other financial incentives in recent years in an attempt to encourage consumers to switch from conventional cars to EVs and hybrids.
You can check online to see what is specifically available in your state, but the federal government offers a federal tax credit of up to $4,502 when buying the Prime.
How Long Does It Take To Charge?
When charging at home using 120v outlets, the car charges in just under five and a half hours.
When using 240v public charging stations, the battery will fully charge in about half that time, just over two hours.