Toyota Adds a Pair of Prii

?Prius dealers are now receiving two additions to their Prius menu, a new wagon-like-like Prius v and a Prius Plug-in.

?Prius v

The Prius v is designed to meet the needs of growing families with active lifestyles while providing the same attributes traditionally found in the Prius DNA including Toyota?s Hybrid Synergy Drive.? With 58 percent more cargo space than the Prius Liftback (a total 34.3 cubic feet), the v approaches the capacity of small SUVs.?? It could also be a good addition to taxi fleets with the extra rear seat and cargo room.

With an EPA estimate fuel economy of 44 mpg city, 40 mpg highway, the Prius v has the highest fuel efficiency of any crossover, SUV or wagon on the market.

The Prius?v?comes in three trim levels Two, Three and the premium Five.? All Prius?v?models have the new 6.1-inch Display Audio system with integrated backup camera, Bluetooth??and USB port, 16-inch alloy wheels with wheel covers, single-dial climate control, EV/ECO/Power modes, driver door Smart Key System and instrument panel with driver feedback displays. ?Toyota?s Star Safety System??is also standard and includes the Anti-lock Braking System, Electronic Brake-force Distribution, Brake Assist, Enhanced Vehicle Stability Control, Traction Control and Smart Stop Technology.

The Prius?v?Three adds standard Display Audio with Navigation and the Entune? multimedia system (includes SiriusXM? Satellite Radio, HD Radio??with iTunes??Tagging and text-to-speech with programmed and customizable test responses).

In addition to standard features on the Prius?v?Two and Three, the Prius?v?Five adds standard SofTex-trimmed seats, heated front seats, three-door Smart Key, 17-inch alloy wheels, LED headlamps, fog lamps and more.

The base prices start at $27,160, including the destination charge, for the Prius?v?Two model, $27,925 for the Prius?v?Three, and $30,750 for the Prius v?Five.?The Prius?v?arrives at Toyota dealerships in late October.

Prius Plug-in

Now with the potential to drive up to 15 miles at up to 62 mph the new Lithium-ion battery Prius Plug-in puts the Prius in a more competitive basis with cars like the Nissan Leaf and Chevrolet Volt.

The first-ever Prius Plug-in Hybrid, combines the benefits of the third-generation Prius Liftback?s Hybrid Synergy Drive with extended electric vehicle (EV) range, in a package that is priced more competitively than any plug-in hybrid or pure EV on the market.

Toyota estimates the new model will deliver an estimated 87 MPGe (miles per gallon equivalent) and when operating in hybrid mode will achieve an estimated 49 MPG3, providing drivers with great fuel economy without range anxiety. ?The Prius Plug-in also offers convenient charging times of only 2.5-3 hours using a standard 120V outlet or 1.5 hours using 240V.

The Prius Plug-in looks like the Prius Liftback except for a unique chrome grille and bumper trim, chrome door handles, 15-inch alloy wheels, blue-accented headlamps, a distinct tail lamp design and a new Hybrid Synergy Drive Plug-in badge.

Prius Plug-in Hybrid will be available in two models, the Prius Plug-in and the Prius Plug-in Advanced.

The Prius Plug-in Hybrid model has heated front seats, Remote Air Conditioning System (which can run either off the grid while the vehicle is plugged in or off the battery like the third-generation Prius Liftback), a charger timer and EV/ECO/POWER modes.? It also has a three-door Smart Key, Display Audio with Navigation and Entune?and an integrated backup camera.? The Plug-in has LED Daytime Running Lights, 15-inch 10-spoke alloy wheels and enhanced Multi-information Display.

The Prius Plug-in Advanced model adds Premium HDD Navigation with Entune?and JBL?GreenEdge?, Plug-in Hybrid Applications through a user?s smartphone, Head-up Display, Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Pre-Collision System, LED headlamps with auto on/off feature and integrated fog lamps, SofTex-trimmed seating, an eight-way power adjustable driver?s seat, Safety Connect and more.

The base MSRP for the Prius Plug-in Hybrid is $32,760, including the destination charge.?The Prius Plug-in Hybrid Advanced will have an MSRP of $39,525.?Both Prius Plug-in models are expected to qualify for a $2,500 federal tax credit.

The Prius Plug-in Hybrid will be on sale in 14 launch states beginning this October through Toyota?s Online Order System at Vehicle deliveries begin in spring 2012.?The launch states include California, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Maine, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia. ?A national rollout is planned for 2013.


More from Our Auto Expert