Find specifications, price and features of Toyota Prius in this review.

Cars in India: Toyota: Toyota Prius

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Toyota Prius

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Toyota is the Japanese giant which holds the lead in global automobile sector and as a market leader it was always expected from Toyota to take the lead in pioneering the industry in any new effort. In 1997 with a goal to create a better world where vehicles and a cleaner environment can co-exist, Toyota launched the world's first commercially available hybrid vehicle, Toyota Prius. Ever since Prius was launched it has become a symbol of future, marking the need for a cleaner better future. The car has already sold more than 1.8 million units worldwide while receiving awards and accolades throughout its 12 year run. In 2009 Toyota unveiled the new Prius intended for the year 2010 and India is one of its destinations. India is not the ideal environmentalists honeymoon destination with less than 10 % of the populations even aware of environmental problems and far less are the people who care. It will take lot more than the eco-friendly nature of the Prius to succeed in India. Let us explore the Prius's charm.

The Prius is a power-split or series-parallel (full) hybrid, sometimes referred to as a combined hybrid, a vehicle that can be propelled by gasoline and/or electric power. The Toyota Prius is powered by a 1.8-litre 2ZR-FXE engine coupled with t electric motors. The engine runs on Atkinson-cycle instead of a more powerful but less efficient Otto cycle. A cooled EGR (Exhaust Gas Recirculation) system, electric water pump and intake side VVT-I (Variable Valve Timing - intelligent) enhances fuel efficiency. The Prius' power train also includes a nickel-metal hydride (Ni MH) battery pack which is charged by regenerative braking. The Prius can be driven in three driving modes-Power mode, Eco Mode and EV (Electric Vehicle) mode. All these modes give a refined handling performance and driving stability to ensure maximum driving pleasure. The Prius features Electrically Controlled Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT). The Prius can do a 0-100km dash in 9.2 seconds. The fuel efficiency is 19.13 / 20.4 kmpl (city/highway), which is best in its segment. You can also utilize the Prius as an electrical vehicle with no fuel usage in EV mode, ideal for short distances.

Design And Comfort
Toyota has used a new range of plant-derived ecological bioplastics for the Prius The two principal materials used are kenaf and ramie, commonly known as China grass and one of the strongest natural fibers, similar to flax in absorbency and density. This makes it one of the most eco friendly designs on the planet. In 2009 Prius's design, the goal was to create a wedge shape with steeply raked windscreen and square rear end corners to reduce aerodynamic drag. The overall height of the Prius is the same, but moving the top of the roof 3.9 inches to the rear alters the roof profile. This also allows for enhanced rear headroom and improved aerodynamics. Engineers made changes to the shape of the fender liner, front surface of the underfloor, and added a fin at the rear floor cover to increase linear stability. The LED lights used as low beams and LED tail lights add to the cars beautiful design. The efficient redesign reduced the coefficient of drag (Cd) value to 0.25, compared to 0.26 for the previous model.

The auxiliary functions of this car including eth air-conditioning do not rely on its engine but on the 500V battery. The unique remote air-conditioning system makes its debut internationally, functioning on battery-power alone and can be remotely operated, so the driver can adjust the interior temperature for comfort before getting in the car. All the information that you require as a driver is projected on the head up display on the lower windshield glass directly in front of the driver and the 5-inch screen of the Eco drive monitor shows an array of information to support fuel-efficient driving. Apart from the technology, Prius boasts of spacious interior and ample room for luggage. The detail and ample cabin space add a warm feeling of comfort. The reclinable slim front seats provide convenience and flexibility. With light touch operation, the electronic shift lever automatically returns to the home position after shifting, enabling smooth shift operation.

Ride And Handling
The suspension system has gas-filled shock absorbers with a stabilizer bar with MacPherson struts at the front and trailing arms, gas-filled shock absorbers with torsion beam at the rear. The suspension system is optimized for roll rigidity and torsional rigidity to provide a high level of stability, control and ride comfort. The Prius rides on 15-inch aluminium alloy tyres that give firm grip of the road. The steering is good and accurate and cornering has been improved considerably in the new model.
Toyota Prius Photos
Toyota Prius Toyota Prius Toyota Prius

Safety is a department where Toyota rules and Prius proves why? The Prius has been given high marks in safety tests and ranks as one of the safest cars on the planet. The Prius comes loaded with top level of safety features like SRS driver airbag, front passenger airbag, SRS driver knee airbag, side airbags and curtain shield airbags. The Active Headrest contributes to reduction of neck impact. The EPS-VSP (Electric Power Steering-Vehicle Stability Control) integrated control system integrates and controls VSC, ABS, EBD and Traction Control system. The crash-safe body is comprised with front and rear crumple zones.

Toyota Prius Price, Variants And Color
The Prius hybrid car is available in two variants and four exciting colours, namely; White Pearl Crystal Shine, Silver Metallic, Beige Metallic and Abyss Grey Metallic. The Prius Base variant costs around Rs. 34, 37,000 while the Prius variant costs Rs. 36, 07,000. (All prices ex-showroom, Mumbai). The pricing can actually deter the cars sales and Toyota should take a look into the pricing.

Toyota Prius Mileage
As a niche product of Toyota group, Toyota Prius provides an average mileage of 19-21 kmpl.

Technical Specifications of Toyota Prius
Model Prius
Body Type SUV
Number Of Doors 4
Seating Capacity 5
Fuel Capacity NA
Length 175.6
Width 68.7
Height 58.7
Wheelbase 106.3
Ground Clearance 5.5
Minimum Turning Radius 36.0
Kerb Weight 3042 lb
Type 1.8-litre 2ZR-FXE
Number Of Cylinders 4
Displacement 1.8 liters (1798 cc)
Transmission Electronically controlled continuously variable
Max. Power 98 hp @ 5200 rpm
Max. Torque 105 lb.-ft. @ 4000 rpm
Front Suspension Independent MacPherson strut with stabilizer bar
Rear Suspension Torsion beam
Front Power-assisted ventilated disc
Rear solid rear disc with Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) and integrated regenerative braking
Steering Type Electric Power
Tyre Size P195/65R15 / P215/45R17

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