Prius – everything you need to know

Read the comments below to see the full discussion about the Toyota Prius. If your question isn’t answered here, please feel free to take a look at, or ask us in the comments below.

Please note that this blog post was first published in 2009, so some references to specification, equipment, fuel economy, emissions and other features may not reflect the latest version of Prius – you can find out up-to-date information here.

If you want to find out how to maximise the fuel economy of your Prius, take a look at this blog post.

Read our other blogs about Prius here.

The following topics have already been discussed:

– Customisation: options, availability and costs (including audio; roof rack, cycle rack, towbar; leather)
– Difference between second-generation Prius and new third-generation Prius
– Wheel size
– Miles per gallon
– Satellite navigation
– Bluetooth and phone sync

– How a full hybrid works
– Battery charging
– Battery lifespan and replacement

– Heated seats
– Cold weather driving

– Servicing: frequency and costs

– Delivery lead times
– Depreciation
– Warranty
– Road tax
– Insurance

Thanks for all the interest in the new Prius.


  1. How much will it cost to replace batteries and usually how long are
    they meant to last before needing replacement?

    1. Hi Monique,

      In answer to your query, the batteries are designed to last the lifetime of
      the car so you should never need to replace them.

      Furthermore, the Hybrid drivetrain is covered by a 5-year 60,000 mile

      I hope that’s helpful.

  2. The Prius has a 136HP Petrol engine and 60kW motor, that’s the
    equivalent of 212HP, isn’t it a tad quicker to 100km/h than 10.4seconds?

    1. Hi Rob,

      In answer to your query, no, this isn’t the case.

      The 136hp is a combined power output; both the engine and motor do not
      provide 100% power at the same time, they complement each other based on
      driving conditions. This results in the stated speed to 100km/hr of 10.4

    1. Hi,

      In answer to your query, the road tax for the Prius on all grades available
      (T3, T4, T Spirit) is £0.

  3. Is the smart entry key constantly emitting microwaves? If so, might
    this be a potential health risk for those who keep their keys in their
    trouser pockets?

    1. Hi Peter,

      The car continually emits harmless radiowaves (not
      microwaves) from the door handles. The key does not transmit, it simply
      responds to the radio signal when it detects the door handle in close
      proximity, i.e. within 0.7m to 1m away.

    1. Hi Ian,

      The new Prius is released on 1st August 2009.
      However, Toyota Centres are already receiving their demo vehicles now so you are able to place an order now should you wish to do so.

    1. Hi Chris,

      In answer to your query, the standard sound system is not JBL, it is
      ‘unbranded’ (Toyota’s own). However a JBL upgrade is available as a Dealer
      fit option.

      For your reference the T3 grade comes with 6 speakers and the T4 and T
      Spirit come with 8.

      I hope that’s helpful.

  4. In the winter, and the car is covered in ice,and you want to warm
    the car up and defrost the windows and warm the car up for the family,how
    do you do this if the enging does not start up like a normal car

    1. Hi Wayne,

      In answer to your query, if your car needs defrosting and the electric
      engine cannot provide enough power, the petrol engine will cut in
      automatically. As with any car in extreme cold, the engine will need to
      start early to ensure it is “warmed up” to power the car when needed.

      The design principle is that the systems in the new Prius adapt to the
      demands you ask of it. For example, the stop & start functionality will
      only work when certain conditions are met. Similarly if the air
      conditioning or heater are activated, the engine may start in order to
      provide energy to power this as required.

      I hope that answers your question.

  5. I drive a 2006 Prius, and have just test driven the 2010 version for
    an hour and a half, up to 65 mph. It seems noisier than the previous
    version when the petrol engine is working, and not accelarating. It seems a
    less refined driving experience than the previous version. Might this wear
    off as the engine gets run in??

    1. Hi Peter,

      Thank you for your question. The new Prius has a brand new 1.8 litre engine,
      meaning lower rpm at motorway speeds than the previous 1.5L unit. For this
      reason, the engine is actually quieter at speed. Without being with you in
      the car, we do not have a complete explanation of why you have experienced
      this. It could possibly be due to the road noise increasing slightly as a
      result of the new 17″ wheels.

    1. Hi John,

      There are currently no plans to take the adaptive
      cruise control for the new Prius in the UK. It is a considered commercial
      decision by Toyota GB not to take ACC in the UK, because the crowded nature
      of our roads means that ACC would very rarely be used, and therefore would
      not prove popular with customers.

    1. Hi Peter,

      Thank you for your question.

      Yes, it is possible to just fit T4 with a sat nav – you can ask your dealer
      about this option. However, we would recommend a T Spirit, as this grade is
      the same specification as the T4 except that the T Spirit also includes the
      sat nav as standard.

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