2017 Toyota Prius Prime Review: The Argument Against Cord-Cutting

– Cleveland, Ohio

The plug-in hybrid Toyota Prius Prime has often been panned because its all-electric drive range is less than half that of the Chevrolet Volt. While the newly named Prime has upped its EV range from below 10 miles in the former Prius Plug-In to a much more livable 25, the current Volt gives you 53 miles. It’s true, the Volt has the Prime beat by an electric mile in this regard. But that’s not the whole story. The Prime has a lot to offer, especially compared to the traditional Prius, which is the gold standard among traditional hybrids. Think of the Prime as a souped up Prius rather than a range-extended electric car like the Volt, and you won’t be disappointed. It’s affordable, easily attainable ultra-efficient motoring at its finest. Customers have noticed, too, as Toyota can’t build Primes fast enough to keep dealers stocked.

 

 

Pros

Easy MPGs. It’s just as easy to achieve crazy-good fuel economy while driving the Prime as in non-plug-in Prius. Just plug it in each night so you have Toyota’s claimed 25 miles of electric range the next day (I experienced about 20 miles per charge). The feds estimate you’ll get 133 MPGe, or miles per gallon equivalent, which is second in the U.S. market only to the Hyundai Ioniq Electric. In my week with the Prime, I achieved around 80 mpg with two full recharges of the battery pack and plenty of miles driven with it empty (it’s rated at 54 mpg combined with the battery pack depleted). While there are three driving modes t...