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2013 Toyota Prius

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2013 Toyota Prius Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 8.0

The world's first and most successful mass-produced hybrid car, the 2013 Toyota Prius hybrid is now a family of vehicles, a sub-brand consisting of the original hatchback Prius, the Prius Plug-In Hybrid built on the same body, the Prius V with its wagon-like extended roofline, and the smaller Prius C hatchback. All Prius models use versions of the same basic powertrain technology, a marriage of gasoline engine and electric motor Toyota calls "Hybrid Synergy Drive." Both power sources can drive the vehicle, and they normally do so in a fluid dance where either can take the lead or both can work together. With varying degrees of pure-electric range plus the gas engine and regenerative braking charging a battery pack, the overall result is exceptional energy efficiency.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you want the best fuel economy in the hybrid field, the 2013 Toyota Prius is still king, with a 51/48 mpg rating for the standard car, 51/49 for the Plug-In, 53/46 for the Prius C and 44/40 for the Prius V.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you don't mind sacrificing a few mpg, and you'd like something more conventional, or more sporty, the Ford Fusion Hybrid sedan and Honda CR-Z hybrid coupe are certainly worth a look.

What's New for 2013

There are no styling, specification or equipment changes to the Prius for 2013, though a new trim package is added, the Persona Series Special Edition.

Driving the Prius

Driving Impressions Due to the seamless transition between electric motor and gasoline engine, driving the 2013 Toyota Prius hybrid is a surprisingly drama-free event. The driver has a choice of performance options...

via the EV, Eco and Power buttons. In EV mode, the Prius functions solely on electric power, though speed and range are quite limited. The Power mode delivers the full potential of the gasoline engine boosted by the electric motor. The Eco mode selects throttle response for best efficiency, and will even shut down the air conditioning when at idle. The Plug-In Hybrid version operates almost exactly the same, though its electric-only range is lots longer, a rated 11 miles. Driving conservatively and taking full advantage of the regenerative braking can yield fuel consumption that tops the EPA ratings.

SOLAR ROOF PACKAGE
Thanks to the solar cells mounted on top, the Solar Roof Package nets you a power moonroof that self-ventilates to help keep the car comfortable. Also, the air conditioning can be remotely started to pre-cool the cabin.

POWER BUTTON
Although the 2013 Toyota Prius hybrid is a lean, green, gas-saving machine, everyone can use a little more urge now and then. Putting the car into Power mode changes the Hybrid Synergy Drive program to get where you're going a bit faster.

2013 Toyota Prius Details
Interior

The 2013 Toyota Prius hybrid hatchback features an interior as modern and different as its exterior. The contoured dash looks particularly handsome with its 2-tone panels, although on base models the gray-colored plastic and fabric look a little dull. The Prius' steering wheel incorporates a wheel-like control that operates the Touch Tracer Display controlling a number of fuel-usage and hybrid-operation displays on the Prius' LCD information screen. Plant-derived (and recyclable) plastic resins are used for the seat cushions and lower door panels.

Exterior

There's no mistaking a Toyota Prius hybrid. The 5-door hatchback's familiar shape is not exactly head-turning, but it's clearly efficient and slippery. Even the car's wheel covers are aerodynamic. The roof's apex is pushed rearward, creating a slightly sporty appearance while simultaneously maximizing rear-seat headroom. Most models ride on 15-inch wheels, but the Prius Five has 17-inchers. Plug-in Prius models feature a port on the right side where the charging cable goes, while the left side has a traditional gas cap. Plug-in models also have a distinct grille, wheels, door handles and lights.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

A 2013 Toyota Prius Two hybrid includes a tilt/telescoping steering wheel with air-conditioning controls and Touch Tracer Display, height-adjustable driver's seat, auto up/down on all windows, pushbutton start, two 12-volt power outlets, a 6.1-inch touch-screen audio display and Bluetooth. Trim levels Three through Five bring upgraded audio systems with Entune telematics, navigation, heated and power-adjustable driver's seat, 17-inch alloy wheels and energy-saving LED headlights and fog lights. The Plug-in Hybrid version comes as a base model with up-level features such as navigation, and as an Advanced version with Dynamic Radar Cruise Control and a head-up display.

Optional Equipment

Several advanced safety systems are available for the top-of-the-line Prius Five, including Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, head-up display, the Pre-Collision System, Lane Keep Assist, and Intelligent Parking Assist. All are offered in the Advanced Technology Package, which includes the Navigation Package. The optional power moonroof has solar-powered ventilation and remote-start air conditioning to help keep the vehicle cool. The dealer-installed Plus Performance accessory package adds a sport-tuned suspension with stiffer springs, ground effects, 17-inch lightweight alloy wheels, lower-profile tires, and a rear anti-roll bar.

Under the Hood

The 2013 Toyota Prius hybrid is powered by a 1.8-liter 4-cylinder Atkinson-cycle gasoline engine mated mechanically and electronically to a 60-kilowatt electric motor, all working with a continuously variable transmission and a nickel-metal hydride battery pack. Total hybrid system horsepower is 134. The Plug-in Hybrid model uses a higher-capacity lithium-ion battery that can be charged from any outlet for up to 11 miles of pure-electric operation. The Prius' EPA city/highway fuel economy rating is 51/48.Learn to manage the system, utilizing regenerative braking and the low-speed full EV mode whenever possible, and you can push actual mileage even higher. The Plug-in Hybrid has a rating of 51/49 for standard hybrid operation, and 95 MPGe (miles per gallon equivalent) by the EPA's plug-in-hybrid formula.

1.8-liter inline-4 Atkinson Cycle
98 horsepower @ 5,200 rpm
105 lb-ft of torque @ 4,000 rpm
60-kilowatt Permanent Magnetic Synchronous Electric Motor
80 horsepower
153 ft-lb of torque
Net output: 134 horsepower
EPA estimated city/highway fuel economy: 51/48 mpg (hybrid); 51/49 mpg, 95 MPGe (Plug-in Hybrid)

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2013 Toyota Prius Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.1
Out of 10

Based on 384 Ratings for the 2010 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.1/10
    Quality
    9.1/10
  • Reliability
    9.6/10
    Performance
    8.8/10
  • Comfort
    8.8/10
    Styling
    8.8/10

Flawless Vehicle

By on Monday, July 27, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 163,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
Not Rated
Reliability
Not Rated
Quality
Not Rated
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Reliability and 46 miles per gallon"

Cons: "None."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have over 160,000 miles on this vehicle and the only things I've had to do is change the oil, a set of tires, and a set of spark plugs. The most reliable car I've ever owned and I'm still averaging 46 mpg. Until I can afford my Tesla, I'll keep driving my Prius."

10 people out of 21 found this review helpful

My 2013 Prius V

By on Friday, July 24, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 26,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
Not Rated
Reliability
Not Rated
Quality
Not Rated
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Fun to drive and great MPG"

Cons: "Seats a bit uncomfortable on long drives"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Love this car and love the advanced technology package. Handles well and I "baby" it. Therefore I am getting more than 50 MPG. This is how I snub my nose to the Gas Companies."

6 people out of 14 found this review helpful

reliable, economical, attractive, comfortable,

By on Monday, July 20, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 39,500

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
5/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "smooth driving, attractive auto"

Cons: "inside storage area limited"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"This car very dependable, a pleasure to drive, 44 miles to the gallon, no trouble except two flats. Easy to handle in traffic, shifts smoothly"

4 people out of 9 found this review helpful

Great gas mileage, comfort reliabbility

By on Thursday, July 16, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 122,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
8/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"We have driven to New England and back and got over 50 mpg. In out hill country, we get over 55 mpg. We can pack most anything short of a sheet of plywood with the fold down rear seats and hatchback. We plan to buy another Prius, but the dealers give lousy trade-ins. (Then they ask big bucks for their used cars.) Take advantage of this deal on a well maintained car."

3 people out of 4 found this review helpful

everything a hybrid should be

By on Sunday, July 12, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 24,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "great value and mileage"

Cons: "little slow but will do 80 and 48MPG"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I am on my second prius, they have both been everything you would want them to be, my first 2009 50 MPG No problems my second 2012 avg 51 MPG as good or better than advertised"

11 people out of 18 found this review helpful

Great fuel economy, lots of room inside

By on Friday, June 19, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 48,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "fuel economy, reliability"

Cons: "NOT a punchy engine, not the sexiest of styling"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I'm very glad we bought this car. I love the silent ride when in all-electric. I love that I barely go to the gas station anymore. I love how easy it is to move items in it because of the folding seats and the hatch. My brother, who owns 2 SUVs, was laughing because I could fit more in my Prius than he could in his cars! It's never broken down or given us any trouble. I would definitely recommend a Prius!"

22 people out of 40 found this review helpful

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