Toyota Prius — 2012 Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid Review — Car and Driver

24 Фев 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »
Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid

2012 Toyota Prius Hybrid

The plug-in Prius much farther and faster on alone, but remains a Prius in other respect.

Back in the years of the previous millennium, the Prius was born, becoming the Toyota hybrid. Since of course, many other and Lexus hybrids have hit the as have many from every other automaker. But the Prius#x2014;thanks to distinct (if unsexy) and industry-leading fuel economy#x2014;that the unofficial greenmobile for Toyota and the

Naturally, then, the Prius is set to the first Toyota to make the big leap in fuel efficiency for by going plug-in with the new PHV, or #x201C;plug-in hybrid And since 2012 is a long way our impatient minds, at least#x2014;we at the chance to drive one of the 150 powder-blue Prius PHVs bound for the in 2010. All are part of Toyota#x2019;s PHV pilot program that these vehicles with utilities and government agencies to data on vehicle performance.

So how exactly does it differ? than silver paint on the door handles, and tailgate, the #x201C;PLUG-IN HYBRID#x201D; lower decals, and a cutout in the left fender that houses the there are no visible distinctions the regular Prius and the PHV. the interior, where a few PHV-specific displays and a slightly raised floor for the PHV#x2019;s larger pack represent the only changes.

The Prius PHV doesn#x2019;t much from the regular from a dynamic standpoint, No surprise, really. The Prius PHV is just a Prius whose hydride battery pack has swapped for a far pricier, far heavier, and far potent lithium-ion pack. potent is unclear, as Toyota tell us how much it improves on the car#x2019;s 1.3-kWh capacity.) The new can be fully charged in three from a simple household outlet or an hour and a half a 220-volt plug. The battery allows for more miles on alone and a commensurate boost in fuel economy.

And so the parallel-hybrid powertrain design, the suspension setup, and the puny wheels remain, giving the PHV the lackluster driving characteristics as its sibling. That includes the electric power steering and a pedal that has yet to deliver close to accuracy.

Going Faster on Electrons

The most difference between the standard and PHV then, is how a judicious right can direct the PHV to achieve and maintain of up to 62 mph using electricity alone. a regular Prius, though, the PHV fire up its internal-combustion engine if not careful. The PHV#x2019;s threshold is higher than the regular but anything more than pressure on the go pedal#x2014;say, as might be to enter the freeway or accelerate up a hill#x2014;and the 98-hp, 1.8-liter stirs with a decidedly moan.

Keep your driving though, and a Prius PHV with a charge can travel up to 13 miles in mode, which becomes more novel the faster one Once the battery pack is the car reverts to the conventional hybrid of the standard Prius.

Even full throttle, the PHV remains far quick, with a 0-to-60-mph of 11.3 seconds, according to versus 9.8 seconds for the non-PHV Blame the heavier battery and its ancillary hardware#x2014;which add about 330 the more sluggish time. But the Prius never has been and will be about driving but rather is about maximum economy. At the end of the day, the PHV proof was not in the pudding but rather neatly on the dashboard. Over a short loop, we were powered by electricity about 39 percent of the and we averaged 56 mpg, according to the readout.

Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid

Two things are worth noting First, in-car fuel-economy are notoriously optimistic. Second, the was heavy on hills and included miles of freeway driving, which we frequently exceeded 80 So although that 56-mpg might not be entirely accurate, with a 10-percent margin of we recorded impressive economy for our After our stint, our driving took the helm for a city and spent nearly two-thirds of the on the electron feed, bringing fuel economy up to 68 mpg for the trip, an of more than 50 percent the last test figure we saw in a

Plug-In Prius Won#x2019;t Be a for Every Environmentalist

So what#x2019;s the Bring it on, right? First, is dotting its i#x2019;s and crossing its before offering the technology to Toyota is using this PHV program to gather real-world to see if a 13-mile electric-vehicle range is to satisfy customers or if perhaps it to look into more- or battery packs. Toyota is buying time to bring the of the Prius PHV closer to what it the hybrid #x201C;sweet spot#x201D; of to $27,000, which, at this it surely exceeds on account of high-tech battery.

Once such targets are met and the product is introduced sometime year, what will of the standard Prius? All signs that it will soldier on and its nickel-metal batteries for a long Toyota reps tell us, conventional hybrid vehicles, will continue to use nickel-metal batteries in the near term. The has proved its value over 12 of mass production and is extremely

Furthermore, Toyota says, the of plug-in technology can depend on an customer#x2019;s geographic location, cycle, and access to charging We would add income to that as since the Prius PHV will a sizable premium over a equipped standard Prius, if Toyota hits its price it won#x2019;t cost as much as the Volt. Assuming costs go Toyota says lithium-ion could be considered in the future for the other hybrids found the Toyota and Lexus lineups. we consider this just rest stop on the way to bigger and technologies.

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