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Toyota Prius



  • You can receive phone calls via the bluetooth while the car is in motion. You cannot make an outgoing call if the car is in motion. The bluetooth activated phone doesn't have to be in the car itself to make the Prius phone work. As long as the phone is within 30 feet, you should be able to make a phone call from the car.
    I was once cleaning the car with the car radio on. To my surprise, the car phone system rang and I was able to answer that incoming call within the car. The bluetooth phone was located upstair in the 2nd floor bedroom. Later on, I realize this could be an issue if another bluetooth capable car with the same "1212" default activation code pulled beside me in the street, he/she could make a phone call through my phone and use up my valuable minutes. I might be changing the activation code to get more security from the system.
  • djasonwdjasonw Posts: 624
    I doubt another car with bluetooth could ever use your minutes. Their system would have to be paired to your phone. I don't think the code is what makes it unique. Someone please correct me if I am wrong.

    You CAN make calls with the Prius when driving but only ONE touch numbers you previously programmed would be enabled.
  • I ordered my 2004 Prius Millenium Silver package 9 on Oct.26 from Town & Country Toyota in Charlotte, NC. I live in SC but didn't get much enthusiasm from the dealers here about trying to sell me one, so thought a larger market would be better. Has anyone had any experience in SC or NC (around Charlotte) with buying a Prius - wait times and prices? I'm told I've moved from 9 on the wait list to 5, and it could be Feb. or March. The "allotment lady" said they've been getting about two a month. Does anyone in SC own one yet?? I'm about to go crazy waiting.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > Later on, I realize this could be an issue if another bluetooth
    > capable car with the same "1212" default activation code
    > pulled beside me in the street

    The whole purpose of Bluetooth is to offer a SECURE connection; otherwise, just a traditional wireless technology would have been used instead.

    Watch when you establish a connection for the first time. The unique identifier from your phone will appear on the Prius Multi-Display.

    One intended purpose of Bluetooth is for the transfer of funds. (Yes, your phone could actually take the place of a credit-card someday.) When money is involved, you better believe security is extremely important. Experiments with wireless vending-machine purchases have already begun in Europe. Experiments with wireless drive-thru purchases have already begun in the United States. Just wait, someday you could actually see the McDonald's menu popup on the Multi-Display. You could make food selections and pay for it all by pressing the screen in your vehicle.

  • Has anyone figured out a use for the little key in the fob?
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    you may be in luck as Toyota just increased Prius production. I don't know whether this means your Prius might come sooner, but it does mean that more people will be able to own a Prius.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    When the battery eventually wears out in the fob, the only way you'll be able to unlock the door is to use the key.

    Battery power isn't needed to start, if you insert the fob into the dash.

  • Any estimates on the battery life?
  • galootgaloot Posts: 13
    The But??? is my concern that the dealer is keeping on top of my order and that it will really happen. Thanks for your advice, I will follow up.
  • ampedamped Posts: 13
    I placed an ad on spec. The phone woke me up, the buyer was here before breakfast, and it'll be delivered tomorrow for a quick $2.5K USD net profit before tax incentives. Not a bad ROI because I'm in a state where TT&L is only $17.50/yr. The buyer wanted it for his college student daughter for Christmas, had to have SRP with AM, and apparently there were none in stock wherever he checked. The Potenza RE950 upgrade tires were the clincher. They buyer had them on his Mercedes.

    After an internet search and several phone calls, I located the clone replacement three states away, due in stock this week. I'm flying out next week (cost $68) to drive it home the same day. The next one will be in my wife's name, so we'll each get the federal and state deductions and credits. Not bad for an hour's "work"! The only other new cars out there today where anything like this is possible also have names ending in vowels but are German or Italian and have MSRP's well into six figures. Thanks, Toyota!
  • oldfoxoldfox Posts: 29
    ALIGRAT - I live in H'Ville, NC and ordered in mid September. Was #1 on list. My car will be here on the 18 of Dec. Not the exact pkg I wanted but you know how that goes with those of us that are boxed in by the SE Region (Jacksonville). As you probably know, here in the Southeast we don't "Order" a Prius with a pkg. Cars are allocated to dealers and even they don't know what they are getting until it hits port. Unbelievable but true. As for pkg 9, Good Luck but it just depends on what comes in and you will have the opportunity to take it or aleave it.
    Hope this helps.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,905
    Hmmm... do I sense a small business opportunity here for someone who lives in an area where Priuses are really hot (e.g. CA) and doesn't mind doing some legwork tracking down new ones, as you did? $2500 net profit per unit, and let's say you can do two of these transactions per month... that sounds like pretty easy money. I suppose at some point though the government will intervene and say that you'd need a dealer/broker license.
  • rpgolferrpgolfer Posts: 157
    Hey ya'all,
       I have a question about the Prius with Pkg #9. Is the Bluetooth phone system expensive to maintain? I live near San Francisco and don't know yet if Bluetooth has service in my area. Also, is the Navagation program pre-loaded into the car or is it loaded by the purchaser? My cell phone needs are absolutely minimal, I don't want to pay for some expensive phone service. Is Pkg 6 a better choice? I like the idea of Smart Entry and the improved radio. Without the upgraded stereo, what is the basic radio like? AM/FM/CASS? How is the noise level at 25, 45 and 65 mph? Have you guys noticed premature front tire wear? Have dealers been cooperative toward warranty items?
    bksward- what part of Ca are you located?
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > Is the Bluetooth phone system expensive to maintain?

    Bluetooth is FREE to use. No service is needed, it's just a feature on the phone.

    In fact, the phone that provides it is FREE (after rebates) right now too. I jumped ship with my old provider, got the phone, and was able to retain my old number. It was a great deal!

    > is the Navagation program pre-loaded into the car

    It's on a DVD.

    And that DVD can be upgraded later (not cheap though) if you desire up-to-date Road & POI (Point Of Interest) data.

    > How is the noise level at 25, 45 and 65 mph?

    That's hard to answer without a frame-of-reference, got one?

    At 30 MPH, the engine is typically off. So you can imagine how incredibly quiet that is.

    > Have you guys noticed premature front tire wear?

    If you switch to a softer rubber tire and use lower than the recommended PSI, you may experience wear.

    With the tires provided, there are no wear concerns at all.

  • rpgolferrpgolfer Posts: 157
    Thank you john1701a.

    The noise levels I was curious about were in reference to hearing the radio appreciation, conversation and road noise. From reviews on this site and others, I have read about tires lasting only about 16k mi and dealers being of little help or customer satisfaction. What is the basic radio like? AM/FM/CASS? Any probs so far with the '04 Priuses?

  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > conversation

    That's an excellent frame-of-reference.

    Friends & Family got in the habit of asking me after I answered their call to the cell phone if I was in my Prius. There simply wasn't enough vehicle noise for them to tell. So that's a pretty good endorsement that conversations in the 2001 were no big deal.

    And now with the 2004 & Bluetooth, the same applies. Except now, they more or less expect me to be in the Prius.

    > I have read about tires lasting only about 16k mi

    Yup, the CHA version of the Potenza tires were a problem. Forunately, Toyota abandoned them and owners are much better off now.

    > What is the basic radio like? AM/FM/CASS?

    That's all I had previously. And with a windows-open preference, it was darn good thing it worked well. So the 2004 version should be similar, except it also comes with a CD player standard.

    > Any probs so far with the '04 Priuses?

    No... and Yes. No there aren't any problems with the hybrid itself. Unfortunately, that great engineering success has caused a supply problem. Demand is so high people are waiting months for delivery now. Bummer, eh?

  • rpgolferrpgolfer Posts: 157
    I've been told by a couple of dealers that waiting time for delivery is 2-4 months. How does that compare with other parts of the country? Has anyone in California experienced problems getting past smog inspections? Here in the Golden State the smog checks can be brutal! The state is upgrading their smog tests to a tougher level so that a lot of cars aren't going to pass the tests. I was wondering how other states fare with their smog requirements and how hybrid vehicles do in the tests.
  • m4ethm4eth Posts: 101

    Currently, you do not need to have your Toyota Prius or Honda Insight tested. There have been difficulties in attempting to perform tailpipe tests on hybrid vehicles. Temporary exemptions can be issued until a new testing process called OnBoard Diagnostics (OBD ll) is available. OBD ll will have the capability to perform accurate testing of hybrid vehicles by reading the vehicle’s on board computer.

    Please call or stop by a local Ohio EPA E-Check field office to obtain a temporary E-Check exemption for your Toyota Prius or Honda Insight.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > 10dB noise level on the highway

    Wow! That's a gross over-assumption. The actual speed was sub-30 MPH, neighborhood driving.

    > "Dead reckoning"

    Yes it does. But I've never been out of GPS reception yet, so I haven't had the chance to find out how long it continues to calculate position.

    Where would that be needed for a car? I could understand someone underground with a handheld finding it useful. The building here (Minnesota) aren't big enough to obscure the GPS signal on the city streets, and there's no benefit in a parking ramp.

  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,905
    I was dead serious about the act of shifting of a manual transmission, while driving, being more hazardous than operating the Prius' Bluetooth phone while driving. The act of shifting requires the driver to take one hand off the steering wheel. The Prius' Bluetooth phone can be operated by the "thumb" buttons on the steering wheel without the driver taking his/her hands off the steering wheel.
  • "The building here (Minnesota) aren't big enough to obscure the GPS signal on the city streets.."

    Not true. Just drive downtown Minneapolis and get stopped under those walkways and you will lose your signal. I lose signal in several spots downtown. The buildings are big enough to cause problems, especially in reduced reception conditions.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,905
    On the highway you typically don't shift.

    On the highways I usually travel on, I do. They are in-city freeways with a lot of stop-and-go rush-hour driving. I'm shifting a lot. Also I do a lot of driving on city streets with stop lights, so again I'm shifting a lot. Not everyone drives on open roads.

    When you do shift, you still keep your eyes on the road and can fully concentrate on driving.

    That's true. But it's also true when using the Prius' Bluetooth phone, so I don't see a safety difference there.

    Very few people drive with two hands on the steering wheel.

    I haven't taken a scientific poll on that, but I do know when I took driver's ed many years ago, "two hands on the wheel" was taught as being safer than driving with one hand. My oldest son just completed driver's ed and, guess what, the instructor told him the same thing. So if in fact most people drive with only one hand on the wheel, I don't think that is a good thing.

    However, Bluetooth does ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to alleviate the distraction of you the driver carrying on a conversation with someone on the other end of the cell phone.

    Actually I think it does a lot in that regard, by allowing the driver to talk while looking straight ahead, without the distraction of holding a phone (but I guess that is OK by you, since they only need to have one hand on the wheel for safe driving, right?) or even a headset. As I noted, I think many other common activities that drivers do, such as talking to people in the car or singing along with music, are more dangerous than a Bluetooth phone conversation.

    So if you don't mind, I'll continue my fuddy-duddy driving style of driving with both hands (unless I'm shifting) and will continue to yearn for the convenience of a Bluetooth phone--maybe I'll at least get a Bluetooth headset for Christmas. :-)
  • This is off topic but since you've made the statement can you back it up with verifiable statistics? I humbly disagree that cell phones are the "current major cause of fatal accidents."
  • Sure, it's dangerous to drive and talk. But it's not causing as many accidents or deaths - even without hands free - as a bunch of other common distractions.

    The recent Harvard study making news found that "a cell-phone user has about a 13 chances in 1 million of being killed in an accident while making a call; that compares with 49 in 1 million for someone driving without a seat belt.
    Other drivers and pedestrians have about four chances in 1 million of dying in an accident caused by a cell-phone user, according to the study. Their chance of being killed by a drunken driver is more than four times as high 18 in a million."

    Okay, those are obviously extreme "distractions."

    But many of the kind Backy was listing are still more deadly than conversing on the phone. The article link below, citing a study by the VA DMV, lists the top 15 distractions causing accidents. Here are their Top 10:

    1. Rubbernecking (looking at a crash, vehicle, roadside incident, or traffic): 16 percent

    2. Driver fatigue: 12 percent

    3. Looking at scenery or landmarks: 10 percent

    4. Passenger or child distraction: 9 percent

    5. Adjusting radio or changing CD or tape: 7 percent


    7. Eyes not on the road: 4.5 percent

    8. Not paying attention, daydreaming: 4 percent

    9. Eating or drinking: 4 percent

    10. Adjusting vehicle controls: 4 percent

    One could make the case that because visibility is arguably not as good in the Prius as say a Lexus RX, rubbernecking and looking at scenery would be less of a problem :) Regardless, Bluetooth connectivity and steering wheel controls are a great SAFETY feature in a society where driving and talking are all but inevitable.

    Peace. gdistraction/drivingdistraction
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I disagree - shifting is not a distraction because it forces you to pay attention to your driving, and giving you better and more direct control.

    Talking on a phone forces you to pay attention to the personal you are talking to. It's completely different, drawing attention away from the task of driving.

  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > Just drive downtown Minneapolis

    Sorry, my data is specifically gathered from St. Paul.

    So if you actually have experience with that, what is the range? How far can you travel without a signal and still be accurately depicted on a map? Realistically though, the benefit in a tight city street situation is a wash anyway. Close is good enough, since you rarely can park close anyway.

    For the suburbs & country roads, the DVD system works fantastic and is very informative.

  • I am about to place an order for a Prius and have to give the dealer color choices. We're inclined to go with black as our first choice (silver and tideland are 2nd and 3rd) but have never seen a black Prius. Has anyone out there seen one and if so, what do you think. Thanks
  • djasonwdjasonw Posts: 624
    A reading of 74 sounds high and I believe I have a good reference point to measure against since I also drive a Mercedes C320. On the same strip of highway traveling at 70 MPH with light winds the Prius is quieter than my Mercedes. Yes folks QUIETER!! If I am going into a strong headwind the nod goes to the Mercedes but EVER so slightly. If you are going up hill, the Mercedes is obviously quieter (less engine noise). On flat and level in the Prius at 70 MPH you really do NOT hear much engine noise. Matter of fact it's so smooth it is hard to imagine there's a 4 banger under there. I am VERY pleased with the quietness of the cabin. When I speak to my passenger I speak at the same dB level as I would in a room. i.e. I DON'T have to raise my voice. Best way to determine if the Prius is the car for you, drive it! Please don't rely on everything you read on the net, especially from people that don't even own this car yet.
  • ...Quick question: This will be the first time that I have ever purchased an extended warranty on a car, can someone please let me know if the Toyota ECP warranty (7/100/$0) covers both parts and labor or does it only cover parts? Thanks, Tony.
  • galootgaloot Posts: 13
    I ordered a millenium silver package #3 with floormats from a SC dealer. I live in Greenville, South Carolina, but ordered out of town to get a better deal and it sounded like they know what they are doing. Guess they may be leading me on about getting what I ordered if Oldfox is correct about Southeast Toyota distribution.
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