2009 Toyota Prius (778)

Overview:

This week we’re looking at the 2009 Toyota Prius Model IV (out of 5 – I, II, III, IV and V). The differences are minor and deal with features included or not. II for example has no Bluetooth, and 6 rather than 8 speakers and no satellite radio.

V for example has leather while others have longer turning radius’, V also had an optional dynamic radar cruise control and lane assist and intelligent parking assist.

Some of these differences are attributable to the ’09 vs the 2010 model years.

Of course not much has changed in appearance and functionality over the years and. It’s not nice to fool around with a successful product. It reminds me of my first economical car that for the day was rather ugly… that college car was the VW Beetle. I think that was a 1960 year model and was as basic as a car can be which reminds me of my first Model A Ford.

Well as much as the world of car has changed it is not earth shattering. The moon walk was earth shattering – literally. I suspect when cars fly over the freeway traffic corridors in multi level as well as multi lanes of air space we can then say the technology has arrived to break the barriers of ho-hum progress in this industry and resultant driving experience. My grand kids will see a whole ‘nuther world of cars I believe but few others will experience a truly new age in the automotive love affair we’ve had for over a hundred years now.

Handling & Performance:

Really cool because when you’re poking along you run on battery so the performance is impressive by any standards. I love to watch the MPG monitor as it pegs at 100 mpg. You too would love that sight and to boot, this car will handle every driving condition, other than off road that you’ll encounter.

Styling:

It’s not a big car – it’s midsize and will seat 4 comfortably and 5 maximum. Consistent look and feel and you can’t miss them on the road. Some would say they’re unattractive and I say I’m distracted by the divider in the back hatch as it obstructs a clear view of rear view traffic in the mirror. Ugly? – no it’s not that bad but moreover beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Conveniences and comfort:

Excellent goodies and midsize car comfort consistent with the class competition.

Fit and Finish:

Very good.

Cost:

Getting better… and for sure it’s a consideration of folks who have opted out of the Hybrid platform because the unknown maintenance problems of the Hybrid technology relative to the marginal increase in fuel economy compared to conventional propulsion.

Consumer Recommendation:

This is a small group in class and I suggest you drive them all. I have of course but you’ll need to look at them all before making the call. A friend just bought a Ford Fusion with a conventional drive train for the reasons mentioned above. All deserve your consideration.

Recognized Competition:

Toyota Prius $22-27,000, Toyota Camry Hybrid $26,150, Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid $25,555, Ford Fusion Hybrid $27,625, Mercury Milan Hybrid $27,855, Nissan Altima Hybrid $26,650, Honda Civic Hybrid $24-27,000, Saturn Aura Hybrid $26,325 .

Good News:

A decade of history with no report of big trouble with the hybrid technology, fun car to drive, wonderful fuel economy numbers.

Bad News:

California DMV will only give 75,000 hybrid car pool lane status. Secondly the administration in Washington in all its wisdom has decided to blow out tax credits for hybrids because of caps. So much for lower taxes for us working stiffs.

Standard Equipment:

1.8 liter inline 4 cylinder 134 hp engine, continuously variable automatic transmission, electric power steering, 4-wheel ABS disc brakes with brake assist and electronic brake force distribution, 15” alloy wheels, vehicle stability and traction control, front, side knee airbags, LATCH child safety system, tire pressure monitor, engine immobilizer, heated outside mirrors, front and rear intermittent wiper washers, AM/FM with MP3 6 disc CD changer with 8 speakers, leather, 6-way adjustable driver seat with power lumbar, climate control, 60/40 split fold down rear seat, tilt & telescopic steering wheel with controls, power windows & locks, cruise control with instant mpg meter, heated front seats, 2 – 12V outlets and keyless entry with push button start.

Gas Stats:

$3.05/ Gal avg. Sept 23, ‘09

www.fueleconomy.gov

for more information.

51 City and 48 Highway MPG

Pricing:

MSRP $25,800.

Your comments are welcomed. My e-mail is joe@autolove.com
Copyright © 2009 – An Automotive Love Affair

Your comments are welcomed. My e-mail is joe@autolove.com
Copyright © 2014 – An Automotive Love Affair.

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