Marathon Prius UK test drive – day two

Yesterday we thought we’d done well to cover 254 miles and give three people a test drive, but today (Saturday) started with a 293-mile trip from Norwich to Washington, Tyne and Wear.

To tell the truth, we had a bit of a jolt when we fed our destination into the sat nav and found that the journey was some 50 miles longer than expected, but we were soon on the road and making good time. I was at the wheel for the first stint, and no matter how I tried I wasn’t able to match the best fuel economy of the day before. After 162 miles with an average speed of 50mph, I turned in 72.5mpg – a figure I would have been thrilled with in almost any other car, but I knew the Prius could do better and felt like I was letting us down.

Alex was soon at the wheel and showing me how it was done, nudging an average 80mpg for a time on the A1(M).

80 mpg

As you can see, we were beginning to run low on fuel, and after 637.3 miles we decided to fill up rather than risk running dry. At this point, I realised that 40-odd litres of unleaded that had got us all this way had cost only around £15 more than my train ticket from Brighton to High Wycome when I picked the Prius up.

Alex ended his 132-mile stint with a higher average speed (54) than I’d managed, and an impressive average consumption of 77.4mpg, but now it was time to let someone else have a go. We’d arrived at the house of Adam and Claire Moss.

Alex and I were barely able to hide our jealousy as Adam – who’s been weighing up the Prius against a couple of other contenders for his next car – got to have a blast in Power mode. We struggled to find the right spot for a demonstration of the Prius’ parking assist, but after 15 miles of driving Adam had managed 51.4 mpg, and we were all smiling.

Before heading off to meet Ray Pockers in Hartlepool, we just had time to drop in on local centre Minories Wearside and give them a look at the new Prius. Two of the team there had seen the car at an event in Baden Baden, but it was great to give Darren and others a look before the arrival of their demonstrator.

In the event, we managed to get to Ray slightly ahead of schedule, and were able to spend a very enjoyable hour or so talking over the new car and showing off its features as we received a local’s tour of Hartlepool. While Ray pointed out HMS Trincomalee and took us past the lighthouse, we were able to offer fully-electric EV mode and a successful, if slightly unpolished, demonstration of the two parking assist modes.

It’s been another long day, and while tomorrow looks like easier going we’ll be covering another 200+ miles before we arrive in Glasgow. We’re pretty tired, but we’re both having a great time, and it’s all worth it to drive the car and to get comments like those we’ve had from Tony, Hamza, Adam and from Lionel.

They’re all much appreciated, but today we’ll leave the last word to Ray:


  1. What’s happened!! No new Prius on Toyota’s website………and I can’t find the blog comments on Today/Tomorrow………..
    Further to my comments of the test drive I have at last a copy of Toyota’s bulletin with specs etc.
    The new Prius is bigger than the existing one so impressions were not wrong.
    The warranty has been reduced from 8years/100,000miles to 5years/60000 miles eh! A little worrying..
    Toyota are accepting orders for August delivery
    Otherwise much as was already known

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