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What to expect from the next model year Prius

dramadesdramades Posts: 5
Hi all,

I'm new to the board, but it looks like good info and friendly folks. I test drove a 2006 Prius and fell in love. Doing my research and comparisons now. Found info re: "all new" engine w/increased mpg and cheaper MSRP for the 2009 (avail in '08), yet the Fed tax credit will be eliminated by then.

Sooo, the ? is, does anyone have an opinion on whether the price decrease would make up for no tax credit? Yeah, I know, it might be hard to tell and I really don't want to wait that long to buy one frankly. It would mean pumping money into my 1997 Ford Contour w/107K mi and I think that's a mistake! Ideas? Thanks so much.
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Comments

  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,732
    "This is the electric turbo that I thought would work well in the 2004 Prius. It runs at high speed off the 12VDC battery but only when you floor the accelerator."

    Thanks for the link, interesting stuff. A couple of notes:

    1. It is electrically driven, so it would impact the HSD, and the effect would be worse when the vehicle was accelerating - the traction battery would have to run the supercharger AND the electric drive motors. This would deplete the battery faster.

    2. ONE PSI boost?

    3. I'm not sure if adding boost to an Atkinson cycle engine would increase power. On an Otto cycle engine it works, but the Atkinson cycle is deliberately intended to work with less pressure. I don't know enough to have a definite opinion, just a question.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,678
    Welcome to the Forum.

    Buy now! There is no way the Prius will be less money than it is now. Unless they cannot sell them and have deep discounts. I would not count on that. Also the credits are still at the top dollar. They will go down soon I would imagine that Toyota is near 60k units for this year. Your 10 year old car is not worth a lot. I would not use it as a trade-in. Get your own financing or better yet pay cash.
  • pathstar1pathstar1 Posts: 1,015
    The 2009 is also reputed to get LiI batteries and be plug-in capable, for much better mileage on short trips. Short trips (1-3 mi)is where the current Prius gets its' worst mileage - still not bad, just not as good as it gets on longer trips.

    Most Prius officionados think it will cost a lot more, because of the battery (lighter weight) and charger. But mostly because it will be in great demand initially.

    This is a conundrum for many prospective owners. It's a high tech. car, and high tech things go "obsolete" fast. The current car has been shown to last a long time (mileage wise) in taxi service and has been pretty trouble free, with only a few owners having problems. I'm planning on getting a 2006 as soon as I can.

    One remark I found entertaining - there are a lot of discussions on how expensive the traction battery will be to replace. One owner phoned Toyota USA and asked how many had failed. The answer was none so far! In any generation Prius. The cost isn't too bad anyway - currently around $2000. I think they can be rebuilt as well, as they are modular.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    As Gary said buy now if you can. Typically on every model Toyota, and most others as well, do not change the pricing from the last model. It usually stays within a few hundred $$ but more features are added, that's the 'discount'.

    Unless Congress extends the incentives program which I think is unlikely the $3150 incentive is very valuable now in today's dollars.
  • dramadesdramades Posts: 5
    Thank you all for the quick feedback. This site rocks!! Yes, I agree that the tax credit is a wonderful incentive now and I doubt the 2009 will drop in price more than the $3,150, if that.

    I'm hoping if I buy a 2006 and it proves as reliable as I expect, it will hold its value. Consumer's shows hybrids (Honda included) as losing more in depreciation dollars than coventional, however, as gas prices increase, reliability stays sound, and people want these cool cars I personally don't think the depreciation will be as much. Any thoughts on that? BTW, can I still order a 2006? I read on Toyota site they are taking orders as of 7/12 for 2007...
  • pathstar1pathstar1 Posts: 1,015
    Not sure why anyone thinks the hybrids depreciate fast - dealers are selling one year old Prii with up to 10,000 mi on them for only a few thousand less than new list price (about 10% discount). What's surprising to me is they sell! Especially in the US where the used one wouldn't get the tax credit.

    I was offered one a few weeks ago here in Canada, but I passed. For a few thousand $ extra I'm getting a new one!
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    If the 2009 Prius hits the showroom floors at 94 MPG, there will be no need for a tax credit, an HOV sticker, or any other incentives.
  • dramadesdramades Posts: 5
    I think the idea is that once the vehicle gets close or past the battery warranty period then you're looking at a nice bill to fix or replace and the resale value would be lower than a conventional car. I am considering that somewhat in my decision whether to purchase one.

    You are right re: prices. Just saw an ad here in SD for $28K for a 2005 w/6300 mi. Granted probably top of line, but no tax credit so doesn't seem like a deal to me.

    Will you purchase an extended warranty? I've read one can be had on the east coast of US for $875 and used anywhere...sounds good...any thoughts out there?
  • pathstar1pathstar1 Posts: 1,015
    I'll tell you what I've read elsewhere.

    Battery - one member of another forum asked a Toyota exec (in parts as I recall), "how many batteries have failed?". The answer was none, in any Prius, any model year. Remember there are some Prii being operated as taxis, and there is a report that some of them are over 200,000 mi now and still going strong. The member then checked on battery replacement cost - about $2000. I don't think the battery is an issue.

    Extended warrenty - I don't like extended warrenties, especially on a Nissan, Toyota, etc. because they are so reliable. I am going to eventually purchase one. Some of the parts of this car that have failed (on a very few owners) are very expensive. The approx. $900 is worth it just for peace of mind!
  • dramadesdramades Posts: 5
    What year was the first Prius on the market?

    I'll check into the extended warranty. Is the std 3 yrs/36K bumper to bumper? Wonder if the extension differs depending on state as I'm in CA where the battery warranty is longer already. Anyone know?

    Another option I'm considering is driving my son's 1991 Honda Accord EX (178K mi) while he's away at college and wait for the 2009, however, I'm thinking the price of the vehicle will be at least what it is now if not higher and no tax credit. Depends on how much one drives on how long it wouold take to make up the difference even at double the mileage. I don't drive more than 12-13K yr. Decisions, decisions!! :-)
  • pathstar1pathstar1 Posts: 1,015
    I think it was 2000 or 2001, but I'll let the officianados jump in here. I'm too lazy to search.
    The std. warrenty is bumper to bumper. The extension is the same all over the US.

    As for value, this brings up a contentious issue - is buying a Prius an "economic" plus? I don't think you will recover the extra cost of the vehicle (compared to other similar non-hybrids) in the fuel savings, unless fuel doubles in price soon (the way things are going it could). What you have to consider are:
    1. The Prius has the least impact on the environment of any car (I'm told - let the arguments begin ;) ).
    2. The Prius has about as much interior room and luggage capacity as a Camry (Prius 96 ft^3 Camry 101 ft^3, Prius lug. 14 ft^3, Camry lug 14.5 ft^3), yet is about the size of a Corolla on the exterior.
    3. The Prius is just about the "coolest" car - at least I think so.
    4. The Prius, though expensive for a "small car", is still relatively inexpensive, so owning it for the "cool factor" is reasonable.
    5. Because of the above, if you want to make a statement of your concern for the environment, this is the car to do it with. Many do. Personally, if I was making an environmental statement, I'd do it with a bicycle, but to each her/his own! ;)
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    If you go by Consumer Reports last auto issue you will be doing yourself a huge disservice. They had to retract their original story and rewrite it a couple of weeks later.

    At pathstar1 noted you might be surprised by what the resales are. Do your own investigation via the web using Edmunds or kbb as a guide and see if the resales are in line.

    Typically any Toyota or Honda depreciates about 10% a year from retail value to retail value.... some 'soft' vehicles might go down faster; e.g. Tundra's now.

    As an estimate a 2 y.o. $26000 Prius with 25-30K miles on it should be able to be sold for about $20000 or so. Trade in should be about $17000, more if you negottiate well.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    The original Prius debuted in Japan in 1997. They hit the States here in 2000. The Gen2 ( current model ) hit the market in late Oct 2003 as a 2004 model.

    The warranty issue is one which is personal but as noted above there are parts, not the hybrid or drivetrain part, but the normal car part that are covered by the 3/36 Basic warranty that are really expensive to repair. As vehicles become rolling computers any computer or electronic system might run you $1500 - 5000 depending. This is true of Acura's, BMW, VW's, Toyota's. This is the primary benefit of the extended 7/100 Warranty.

    I am considering it for my 2005 Prius for peace of mind on the non hybrid electronic components.

    The current model will cost you less than the 2009 IMO depending on what Congress does but driving a reliable preowned vehicle is even less costly in every situation.
  • Does anyone know whether the 2009 Prius will come standard as a plug-in or if plugging in will be an option?

    Would anyone know whether the 2009 Prius will change to use only the electric drive motor to propel the vehicle with the engine relegated to only providing charge for the batteries; or will it remain in the same configuration as the current model, where both the engine and electric motor are used to propel the vehicle?
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    No one knows because Toyota has not announced any of that information. It's far too early for them to do so, because design changes and company policies such as cost decisions will affect all of that.

    We will not hear any of that info probably until late 2007.
  • terry92270terry92270 Posts: 1,247
    It is doubtful Toyota will abandon the Hybrid concept so early as 2009, however, and their people, in what they have said about forward planning, have never indicated so. ;)
  • I found the following on the CalCars website:

    The [Prius] redesign is likely for the 2010 or 2011 model year. The next generation probably will have plug-in capability, as in letting you plug it in to your house's grid to recharge and allowing you to drive on full electricity for the first 40 or so miles. It also may have a rheostat so drivers can select a performance or fuel-economy mode. (Automotive News). The Automotive News reference points to information contained on the Autoweek website.

    Love where Toyota's going, but hope they can bring the car to market sooner. Put me on the list!
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    they are talking about the Prius AFTER this current generation - they have to be.

    Toyota would not allow the Prius to go from 2003 to 2010 or 2011 without a re-design.

    The next gen Prius is expected for 2009, then maybe they make plug-in an option in 2011.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,732
    "they are talking about the Prius AFTER this current generation - they have to be.

    Toyota would not allow the Prius to go from 2003 to 2010 or 2011 without a re-design. "

    There have been recent media reports that Toyota is delaying the next generation of their models to try and tighten up the quality controls, due to the recent spate of recalls experienced by the company. However I think it was a 6 month or 1 year delay in development.
  • Michael2003 asked:

    "Does anyone know whether the 2009 Prius will come standard as a plug-in or if plugging in will be an option? "

    Solar, geothermal, and wind powered. It will require no gas or electric plug in, although as a backup a 1,000 mile radius wireless Internet adapter will be offered.

    There will also be a fluid dynamics perpetual motion option.

    The Oil and Electric companies love the new model and are giving it their full support.

    Power to the People,

    MidCow
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