IT’S A BEST BUY BECAUSE:

It would be a fine midsize car even if it didn’t get 50 mpg.

BUT…

There are few stand-alone options—and none for the lower trim levels—so getting a feature you want might mean moving to a pricier trim level.

WORTH NOTING:

The Plug-In version is claimed to be able to go about 11 miles just on electricity before the gas engine kicks in.

WHAT IS IT?

Prius essentially homogenized the gas/electric hybrid vehicle into the American automotive landscape.
Today, Toyota sells three main versions of this 4-door, 5-passenger car: the “traditional” midsize hatchback discussed here, the subcompact Prius c hatchback, and the larger Prius v wagon. Toyota also offers a plug-in version of the hatchback.

WHAT’S NEW?

A Special Edition appearance package with dark-finish 17-inch wheels and other unique trim features is the only update of note for 2015. An all-new Prius is slated to debut as a 2016 model.

FUEL ECONOMY

Prius’ EPA-estimated fuel
economy is 51 city/48 highway. In Consumer Guide® testing, Prius II and V models averaged 49.6-51.9 mpg. Prius uses regular-grade gas.

VALUE IN CLASS

The Toyota Prius is a fine midsize car that just happens to achieve some of the best fuel economy we’ve ever experienced. There are some compromises, namely in terms of acceleration, rear visibility,
and a somewhat cheap-looking
interior. In the grand scheme, these are fairly minor niggles given
the car’s decent ride, accommodating cabin, and exceptional cargo versatility. Our top Prius picks are the II, III, and IV models, which offer most every feature buyers could want at very aggressive prices.

BASE PRICE RANGE $24,200 – $34,905
BODY STYLES 4-door hatchback
AVAILABLE ENGINES 134-hp, 1.8-liter 4-cyl./ELECTRIC
DRIVE WHEELS Front
BUILT IN Japan
EPA FUEL-ECONOMY RANGE 48-51 MPG

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