2015 TOYOTA PRIUS THREE HATCHBACK 4D

Price: $18,995

Year 2015

Make TOYOTA

Model PRIUS

Trim THREE HATCHBACK 4D

Drivetrain FWD

Transmission AUTOMATIC

Engine 4-CYL, HYBRID, 1.8 LITER

Mileage 84,912

Doors 4

Exterior Color GREY

Interior Color GREY

VIN JTDKN3DU3F0414083

Stock No. 4959

Vehicle Equipment

Vehicle Description

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The name Prius now actually describes a range of four different vehicles. The base vehicle is now called the Prius Liftback, and there's a plug-in hybrid version of that car that looks all but identical. The last two additions to the line are the Prius V wagon, and the Prius C subcompact hatchback. But for 2015, its sixth model year on sale, the basic Prius Liftback is essentially unchanged.

And three of those four Prius models share the title of "most economical gasoline car sold in the U.S.'--with the Liftback, Plug-I, and Prius C all carrying an EPA combined rating of 50 mpg. Only electric cars are more efficient. While the rest of the world's makers have had six years to try to beat the Prius in fuel-economy ratings, none has succeeded.

In the 12 years since the previous generation of Prius launched upon an unsuspecting world, the shape of the world's most popular hybrid vehicle has become well establish in the public eye--iconic, even. At this point, either you like the shape of the car or you don't, but either way, it's accepted as a part of the vehicular landscape on U.S. roads.

The 2015 Toyota Prius carries over unchanged the wedge shape, high tail, almost horizontal tailgate with a second window in the vertical part are elements that instantly define "Prius" and make it instantly recognizable the world over. Every last line, crease, and shape serves to reduce aerodynamic drag, which takes more energy to overcome at speeds above 30 mph than actually moving the mass of the car itself. With a drag coefficient of 0.25, it remains one of the most aerodynamic cars on the market, though it's no longer the gold medalist in that respect. Otherwise, very little of the exterior has changed since the 2010 launch of the current generation, save for the addition of LED running lights.

The 2015 Toyota Prius is all about gas mileage, which makes its 50-mpg combined EPA rating the most important performance statistic. And most owners should achieve within 10 or 12 percent of that number in real-world usage, with the most dedicated able to exceed that with careful driving. Hard use of a heavily loaded car, especially in the winter months, may drop fuel efficiency into the high 30s, but that's unusual. It's really pretty difficult to make a Prius grossly uneconomical.

The powertrain that delivers this magic combines a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine tuned for peak efficiency with a pair of electric motor-generators, all of it together known as Toyota Hybrid Synergy Drive. The motors add torque to supplement the engine power, power the car entirely on electricity at low speeds and under light loads, and recharge the battery pack during regenerative braking--recapturing energy that would otherwise be wasted and recycling it to propel the car when needed. The 1.3-kilowatt-hour nickel-metal-hydride battery pack sits under the rear load deck.

The 2015 Toyota Prius liftback is defined by the EPA as a mid-size car, based on its interior volume, and four adults can ride comfortably--with five at a stretch, though we don't recommend carrying five and their luggage for long journeys. There's lots of space in the front compartment for all those personal items that accumulate in a car, including trays, cup holders, bins, and storage cubbies. We have always found the flat tray under the center "flying buttress" console hard to get to and hard to see into, though it may be good for hiding things from prying eyes while parked. And the high tail gives the Prius a substantial load bay under its long tailgate.

Up front, drivers can adjust their seat for height, though the tall shape offers good headroom. But the padding on the seats feels thin, and long-legged drivers will find their right knees bumping uncomfortably against the hard-plastic console. Rear-seat room is greater than it may appear, between the domed roofline and hollowed-out front seatbacks.

Striking and Space Age-y when new, the Prius interior now looks slightly dated--especially its information displays--and more than a little chaotic. The hard plastic surfaces carry a variety of textures and patterns, so they don't look bargain-basement, but even subcompacts offer soft-touch surfaces now, and the Prius hasn't kept up. Worse, jumble of icons, numbers, and graphs on the two different information displays require learning and can be distracting, especially without the smart Touch Tracer controls on the steering wheel that let a driver move a cursor on the displays without lifting away from the wheel.

*This vehicle is Certified Pre-Owned and is eligible for our third party warranty program. 

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