Dec 14, 2012

Toyota Prius III Testdrive... The Last One

Yes, you read it, the last testdrive. Why? Because I bought it right away. But let's take a look.

First of all, I couldn't drive the Prius III FL. The store only had a Prius III. So, not the facelift model with slight improvements. The acceleration is good. With 0-60 mph (0-100 km/h) in about 10 seconds, it's fast enough. The top speed is at 180km/h. Interestingly the acceleration felt even better, because of the CV transmission (CVT). I know either you love it, or you hate it. But a transmission without shifting gives you that feel you are in a train or plane that just accelerates.And speaking of the 180 km/h. I was easily and quickly at 192 km/h in PWR-Mode and it could get faster, but on that day I couldn't because of the traffic.
But really, it isn't about driving fast in a Prius, right? You can, but what you really want is saving fuel. And wow, you can.
Even with no special hybrid driving techniques and my many top accelerate tests and driving to test out max speed, it came on a 5.6 liter per 100 km/h. I'm very sure you can reach the 3.9 liter if you drive perfectly with that hybrid. I mean come on, I drove like I never would, when not testing a car, and it consumed less fuel than my tiny little car when trying to save as much fuel as possible. That scored a big point.

Another point was the luxury feeling inside. A feel of cruising came to my mind. You glide on the street. The CVT is very comfortable. I was impressed how smooth I could accelerate on a steep hill. After you release the brake pedal, the brakes are holding the car for about 2 seconds before it starts rolling backwards. And you could really moving that car on that hill with no shaking, softly with 1-3 km/h. I've never experienced something like this. You have full control of the engine.
Speaking about that 138 system hp engine, you have 4 drive modes. Normal, eco-mode, power-mode and EV-mode. With EV-mode you can drive with electricity only for 2 km or 9.6 km [Video] if you are a hybrid experienced driver. Other modes are affecting the gas pedal response and the air conditioning.

The car's VSC, how Toyota calls it, is something I'm not fully satisfied at the moment. It was the only car that slipped a bit on my test-track. However, the car was perfectly controllable. I have to add that I drove just a bit too fast on purpose. With no manual gear shift (all the other cars I drove had manual transmission), I was eventually speeding up way too much  in that extremely hard and long curve. Like I said, no problem to get the car under control again. I'll check that for sure when I get mine.

And there we go. I ordered it. It was impressing with the comfortable driving, and the unexpected good acceleration and the CVT. The thing that really is outstanding is the fuel efficiency and the EV-mode. I'll give you more details when I've got it. But that will take some month.
But for now my odyssey for a new car has come to an end and I can't wait to have my new "Snow white" :).