2017 Toyota Prius Hybrid Hatchback (Review)

Without a doubt, the Prius is the most popular and distinctive hybrid vehicle that Toyota has ever produced and is a pioneer in hybrid technology, delivering one of the best mpg of any vehicle. Since its introduction in the 1990’s, other hybrid vehicles have entered the automotive scene in more recent years, but no other has been able to surpass the popularity of the Prius. With a unique style, smooth handling, and excellent fuel economy, such as with the Prius Eco yielding an impressive 56 MPG combined, it is very easy to see why it is still the world’s best selling hybrid vehicle.

The 2017 Prius was completely redesigned during the previous model year and now features a lower, ergonomic, and improved supportive driver seat, increased front cabin leg and headroom, 14 percent more cargo/trunk space, better handling, and a sleek, new exterior design.

The four-door hatchback seats up to five passengers and is available in seven trim levels- One, Two, Two Eco, Three, Three Touring, Four, and Four Touring. The Prius One and Two come fitted with similar features, except the lower One trim does not come with a rear window wiper.

The Prius is powered by a 1.8-liter hybrid engine with a mixed production of 134 horsepower that is connected to a (CVT) continuously variable transmission. A plug-in version is also available, however; due to its heftier batteries, it can reach 62 MPH solely on electric power. Other trims are available, such as the bigger Prius V Wagon and the smaller and less expensive Prius C hatchback.

Standard features for both the Prius One and Two trims include- height adjustable driver and passenger cloth seats, split-folding rear seatback, storage center armrest, hands-free entry, 4 one-touch power windows, clock, trip computer, external temperature display, cruise control, front and rear cup holders, front door pockets, overhead console with storage, front seatback storage, electric power steering, tilt and telescopic steering wheel, sound and cruise controls on steering wheel, rear view camera, interior air filtration, climate control, simulated alloy steering wheel, dual illuminating vanity mirrors, 6 speakers, AM/FM stereo, auxiliary audio input and USB with external media control, radio data system, USB connection, Telematics, and Bluetooth wireless data link for hands-free phone connectivity.

The Prius Two Eco is fitted with illuminated keyless entry on three doors, two-tone wheel covers, ultralow-rolling-resistance tires, an inflation kit instead of a spare tire, and a lighter lithium-ion hybrid battery.

The better equipped Prius Three includes- a navigation system, white interior accents, leatherette steering wheel and armrest trim, a 7-inch touchscreen, satellite radio, a wireless phone charging pad, and Toyota’s Entune Infotainment System that comes with HD Radio, weather, current traffic, stock and fuel prices, sports, and apps such as Yelp, Pandora, OpenTable, and iHeartRadio.

The Prius Four comes with automatic wipers, leatherette upholstery with contrasting white stitching, rear cross-traffic alert, a rear cargo cover, blind spot monitoring, seatback storage pockets, heated front seats, and a power driver seat with adjustable lumbar. The Three Touring and Four Touring add larger 17-inch alloy wheels, foglights, LED clearance lights, unique rear bumper styling and leatherette upholstery with contrasting blue seat stitching, and come with the Toyota Safety Sense package, which includes full-speed adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning and intervention, a pre-collision warning system, and automatic high beams.

An Advanced Technology Package upgrade is available for the Prius Three and Four trims, which adds a sunroof, Toyota Safety Sense equipment, and a head-up display. A Premium Convenience Package that includes a self-parking system, safety connect emergency help, and a JBL 10-speaker premium sound system, is available for the Prius Four and Prius Four Touring trims.

The 2017 Toyota Prius has a high safety rating and is one of the safest hybrid vehicles available. It comes equipped with 4-wheel ABS, front and rear head airbags, dual front side-mounted airbags, child seat anchors, emergency braking assist, ventilated front disc / solid rear disc brakes, rear door child safety locks, daytime running lights, engine immobilizer, auto delay off headlamps, 2 front headrests, 3 rear headrests, passenger airbag occupant sensing deactivation, rear center 3-point belt, stability control, traction control, rear folding headrests, tire pressure monitoring, first aid kit, an Emergency Assistance Kit, and a security system with impact sensor.

On the road, the Prius has great driving dynamics and has a stable, yet lightweight feel. A Plus Performance package is available, which improves the driving experience, adding a rear sway bar, lowering springs, and 17-inch wheels.

The interior of the Prius is simple, yet very modern with easy to use controls. Road noise is minimal and both the front and rear cabin are spacious with enough head/legroom for taller passengers. Even though there are a lot of hard plastics throughout the front cabin, the layout looks clean and uncluttered. I like that all of the controls are easy to reach and operate while driving and the interior is surprisingly roomier than it appears from the exterior. Trunk space is quite accommodating and can be expanded with the split folding rear seats to haul larger items.

The 2017 Prius is the perfect choice for consumers desiring a vehicle that can be driven all day in both the city and on the highway delivering optimal fuel economy and a fast charging rate.  The Prius is also very affordable with a starting MSRP of only $23,475.

If you have been looking for a hybrid vehicle that is fun to drive, comfortable, spacious, and affordable with excellent fuel economy, then I highly recommend taking a look at the 2017 Toyota Prius Hybrid Hatchback.

To find out more about the Prius, please visit- www.Toyota.com





Philippa Lane is an automotive writer, expert author for Ezine Articles, and staff writer for Cable Muse Network.