Long before everyone else, the Prius became the pioneering hybrid car in the Philippines when Toyota Motor Philippines brought it to the country in 2009. However, Toyota’s early gamble on electrification proved to be one of its rare duds, as the country clearly wasn’t ready for such a vehicle.
Fast forward 11 years later, and the Prius is still on Toyota’s roster, albeit reportedly on an “on order” basis, meaning you can’t troop to your nearest Toyota dealership to check the vehicle out—you’ll have to order it first.
Unfortunately for the Prius, the order waiting time is the least of its troubles, as there are far more affordable vehicles with far better ranges available in the market today. It even has competition from Toyota’s own lineup. Hello hybrid versions of the Corolla Altis and Corolla Cross!
Be that as it may, the Toyota Prius remains one of the best hybrid options out there, and not only because there are so few, but because it is first and foremost a high quality car.
So what’s good about the Toyota Prius? And what do we don’t like about it? We list down the vehicle’s pros and cons for your car shopping convenience.
You can’t really go wrong with a Toyota. It’s the number one car brand for a good number of reasons, and one of those reasons are, the quality of their cars simply cannot be ignored. You can still probably see a good number of Toyota Tamaraw FX around. Ever see any more Kia Prides? 80s era Mitsubishi Lancers? No? We rest our case.
2. Fuel sipper
With the volatility of gas prices, car owners in the country have been subjected ever-increasing fuel costs for far too long. You can put a stop to all that bleeding by making the Toyota Prius your car of choice. The locally available model has a reported fuel economy of 54mpg (23km/l) in the city and 50mpg (21 km/l) on the highway, with the reduction owing to the fact that the battery takes more of the workload in city driving. Some owners even claim achieving better fuel efficiency than Toyota’s estimates.
3. Sleek looks
The previous three Prius generations were heavily criticized for their bland and boring appearance, so Toyota made a lot of aesthetic improvements to the car on its fourth generation. To say that the changes are impressive is an understatement—the fourth-gen Prius is totally different from its predecessors, and the styling finally befits its price range. The sharp and stealthy design cues at the front is matched by thick and heavy creases at the back, giving the car a look that’s equally sleek and muscular. Magnanimous 17-inch alloy wheels and a special rear spoiler further add enticement to the Prius’ overall package.
4. Quality creature comforts
There’s only one Prius trim available locally, and judging from its contents, it’s the only one you’ll ever need. It’s got tons of powered amenities (driver seat, push start, windows, doorlocks, rearview mirror, etc.), S-flow climate control, shift-by-wire transmission, leather upholstery, and so on. Infotainment duties are handled by a 7-inch display with Bluetooth and USB connectivity. The system links to 10 JBL speakers that send you to aural heaven. A 4.2-inch TFT screen displays trip information, but there’s also a head-up display for when you want to keep your eyes focused on the road.
5. Less emissions
With the ever-growing concern for global warming and climate change, everyone needs to do their part to ensure today’s children have a future to enjoy. Hybrids release less carbon and other harmful emissions into the atmosphere than their combustion engine-equipped counterparts, and that can only benefit the environment in the long run.
1. It’s expensive
With a PHP2.34 million price tag, the Prius is well out of reach of many car buying Filipinos. And with all the more affordable hybrid options out there, the only possible reason that buyers would go for the Prius is the luxury and convenience features.
2. It’s old
The Prius that TMP is selling is from the 2017 year model. Despite the abundance of technological features, so much has happened in three years, that some of the Prius’ onboard systems can be considered obsolete. It’s also lacking a lot of Toyota’s standard highlights today, such as the Toyota Safety Sense driver assistance suite, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto Connectivity, and GPS navigation, to name a few. For a brand new car, the age can be a huge turnoff for some.
3. Slow to accelerate
It takes the Prius over nine seconds to accelerate to reach 100kmph from a standstill. For those looking for a highly responsive hybrid, the Prius is not it. Granted, top speed is pretty decent at 180 kmph, but again, it’s not enough for those who have a need for speed.
4. Cramped rear cabin
The backseat area is intended more for children or persons of smaller stature, as there’s a total of 64mm difference in legroom between front and rear. This will likely be a huge source of discomfort for those with very tall family members.
5. Styling is an acquired taste
Not everyone’s going to go for the Prius’s marriage of sleek and beefy design cues. Some will find the overall aesthetics excessive. Despite the divisive looks, many have shown their appreciation for the Prius’ avant garde appearance.
Want to learn more about the Toyota Prius? Get to know the car’s unique specs and attributes here on Carmudi.
Photo/s from Toyota