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Toyota Prius



  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    Last week, my brother setup an appointment to get his back window replaced.

    Total Cost= $9,600

    Had he worked a regular schedule, it would have never happened... As he was pulling out of the parking spot at work, next to a large truck, a person cutting through the parking lot at high-speed to avoid having to wait for the near by stoplight rammed into him. It totalled the car.

    Funny part is, he had the tow-truck bring the car to the dealer, where he had the appointment. So when the mechanic came out to do the back window work, he had one heck of a big surprise... the front-end of the car was destroyed! Needless to say, he used that appointment to get a damage estimate instead.

    The point is, it could have been much worse.

    Glad your Prius is now ok.

  • scott31scott31 Posts: 292
    The Matrix is cheaper than the Vibe, and has a better warranty.
  • I ordered a Silver BC package on Oct. 22. Still waiting with no word as to when it will be delivered.

    Meanwhile, I read the posts which are making me wonder if it's worth the wait:
    -- People seem to be filling up around 7 gallons and averaging about 40 mpg. That equals a crummy cruising range of 280. Who likes having to stop at a gas station so often?

    -- The car, already 5 grand more than a great ICE car ike the Corolla, seems to require replacing the tires--An additional $400 plus a trip to the shop.

    -- Reports of warning lights coming on, sometimes siginifying a serious problem, other times signifying nothing.

    -- Reports of the poorly sealed M5 in the differential, causing the car--occasionally--to lose power.

    I am aware that most people posting on this forum are happy with their Prii, but taking the above in concert, I'm wondering if I shouldn't cancel the order and go for a Corolla or Matrix.

    What are your takes on the subject?

    Oh, and speaking of the tires, visiting Tire Rack, it seems that Michelin Hydroedge are the highest rated tires overall. Any reason, other than cost, that I shouldn't consider those to replace the OEMs?
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > People seem to be filling up around 7 gallons and
    > averaging about 40 mpg.

    Last week it was -18F degrees here. So naturally some people will report low MPG. I personally got 39.1 MPG.

    But back when it was warm, it was at 50 MPG. And that's without the car even having been broken in yet.

    Clearly, you are getting sent a very misleading message due to the unfortunate timing.

    > Reports of the poorly sealed M5 in the differential

    There are nearly 8,000 members on the Yahoo group (hence the appeal here, being much smaller). Not a single one of those owners have reported the "M5 problem". It is turning out to be just a rare fluke. Sometime that could happen, but in reality doesn't for virtually everyone. In other words, the same as any other vehicle.

    > Reports of warning lights coming on, sometimes siginifying
    > a serious problem

    Without any facts, that is nothing but a rumor. Can you be more specific? I certainly don't know to what you are referring.

    There is a known "warning light" scenario for new owners. But that is simply excess sealant burning off in the exhaust system, exactly the opposite of serious: a non-issue. It finishes the burn and is gone forever.

  • Well folks, my wife is having second thoughts after realizing that the HP quoted for the Prius is much less than her Nissan Altima (which we are trying to replace with the Prius) and the Camry 2004 (which is our second choice if the Prius does not show up soon!).

    I do see her concern because of the (sometimes) impatient drivers on freeways when smaller vehicles (like the Prius) are attempting to merge. I'd appreciate comments from new Prius owners on your experience.

    I test drove it and it looked ok. However, this was a weekend, traffic was light, no big SUV's trying to run me down, no kids in the back, and sans any grocery in the trunk!


  • It would be nice if Toyota would add vertical adjustment to the drivers seat. The cost would be minimal since they could use the same mechanism they use in the Corolla. Also why not include daytime running lights. They are included on almost all of their other models.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > I do see her concern because of the (sometimes) impatient
    > drivers on freeways when smaller vehicles (like the Prius)
    > are attempting to merge.

    First, note that some of the fastest vehicles on the road are "small cars". So size really is meaningless. Actually, so is HP doesn't mean a whole lot either. It's torque that you really desire. And Prius has loads of it.

    Second, take a test-drive. Ignore what your ears and butt tell you. Just watch the speedometer. You'll be shocked at how much faster the 2004 Prius is than the HP leads you to believe.

    Lastly, keep in mind that automatic transmissions take a performance hit when shifting from gear to gear. Since Prius doesn't have any gears at all, just a permanently engaged power-split device, it doesn't have that limitation. The acceleration curve is remarkably consistent.

  • djasonwdjasonw Posts: 624
    I had performance cars prior to my Prius ownership and I don't miss them at all. I've had a WRX, a Mercedes C320 sport, and Audi allroad. The Prius has NEVER let me down attempting to merge in Long Island traffic. It has more than enough mid range punch to allow passing if needed. It accelerates quite nice from a stop light too. I have a bit over 4,000 trouble free miles. Great car!
  • m4ethm4eth Posts: 101

    For the price I would say that Toyota should include most of the options as standard (seat adjustment, fog lights and DR Lights...).
  • I ordered package #7 coral red at beginning of November from Wappinger Falls Toyota, and was led to believe by an inexperienced salesman that the end of the year was a "good possibility". That didn't materialize. Allocations were supposedly 3-4 a month, and then I was 9th at the end of December, according to this salesman. Last week, speaking directly to the sales director, he informed me that he had sent a copy of his list of pre-orders for the rest of the year to Toyota, and that I should expect to receive a letter from them,informing me when my car would ship out. Seems like the dealer's trying to avoid the brunt of inquiries instead of advocating for us. I wonder if anyone else has experienced this. Needless to say, I have begun calling other dealerships in the Tristate area.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > For the price I would say that Toyota should include
    > most of the options as standard

    Lots of goodies come standard already. See:

    • CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission)
    • Automatic Climate-Control with Electric A/C
    • Anti-Lock Brakes
    • Traction-Control
    • Cruise-Control
    • Power & Heated mirrors
    • Power windows
    • Power door locks
    • AM/FM/CD with 6 speakers
    • Keyless-Entry remotes
    • Cast Aluminum Alloy rims
    • Tilt steering with audio/climate controls
    • 60/40 Split-folding rear seat
    • Multi-Display with trip computer
    • Rear Defroster
    • LED Brake Lights

    That's quite a bit for a $19,995 base price for midsize car that offers very low emissions and fantastic efficiency.

  • the 2005 model will be coming out. It may have DRL and drive seat height adjustments.
  • m4ethm4eth Posts: 101

    For the price I would say that Toyota should include most of the options as standard (seat adjustment, fog lights and DR Lights...).
  • Does anyone know Prius' time for 0-60???
    I currently have a 00 Celica and trying to compare acceleration w/Prius. I have a 60 mile round trip commute each day, and considering the Prius for my next car.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > Does anyone know Prius' time for 0-60???

    With my tires pumped up to the maximum (for improved handling, better MPG, and longer tire life), I can accelerate from a dead stop to 60 MPH in just under 10 seconds.

    In other words, it's faster than necessary. I haven't ever needed to accelerate that quickly.

  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    Motor Trend equalled John's time, getting 9.8 seconds. C/D managed only 11.3 (slackers!). I saw another review with 10.4 seconds.

    Ask yourself: how many times a day do you need to accelerate at full throttle from 0-60? For me, the average is a number far less than 1.
  • Has anyone had success transferring their phonebook to their Prius? I and several others need instructions.
  • m4ethm4eth Posts: 101
    I've noticed about a 15-20% reduction in MPG with my conventional ICE machine (ECHO 40 MPG to 32 MPG).

    I assume a Prius that is using its electric motor about 50% of the time and ICE 50% would have less of a reduction in MPG say only you have enough MPG numbers to give a % reduction in MPG at this time for the 04 Prius???

    Thanks, Mike
  • bibbysize,

    I have a Celica 2000 GT auto. I test drove 2004 Prius twice already. Prius felt a little weaker but you won't be dissapointed. Prius had plenty of power and didn't feel weak like a Honda civic.
  • rpgolferrpgolfer Posts: 157
    Hi everyone.
      Well, I did it. I am now the proud owner of an '04 Prius Pkg 9. I was sure that a new Camry was my likely choice as the Corolla was a bit small and the Prius has a 4 month waiting list. So I strolled into a nearby dealership to look at Camrys. I spotted a Prius waiting to be picked up (Silver Pkg 7). A salesman asked if I was interested in a Prius. He said a customer cancelled an order due in next week and if I was seriously interested he would ask if he could sell it to me. I told him yes knowing how much of an opportunity this is. He called me 5 hrs later and said it just came off the truck and had to picked up today.
      It is a Driftwood Pearl, Pkg 9. The factory snuck in glass breakage sensor, mats, cargo net and applique for an additional $448, for an MSRP of $26,202. Closed the deal at sundown so I'll pick up the car today. I'm really excited about getting this car!! I would like to ask you guys/girls a big favor. If you can share your advice on how to break in the car or other owner's tips I would greatly appreciate it. I want to do everything right and get the most from this car.
      I'm going from an '84 Corvette to a Prius, so I'm sure I'll have a few adjustments to make.
      I passed on the extended warranties (surprisingly offered at a generous discount this weekend only) and the premium care plan. What do you guys think of ext warranties/premium care? I plan to study the owner's manual thoroughly when I get it. Wish me luck!
    Thank you in advance

  • azstanazstan Posts: 74
    Welcome. I have found this board to be the most informative of any that I have subscribed to. In fact, I bought my Prius largely because of information I have gotten here (metallic blue with package #9.

    My only irritation with Toyota about this car is their "glitzy" way of naming the colors. Why not just metallic blue, metallic green, black, white, etc. ?

    Sorry got off the subject I am posting...which is this suggestion for you. Go to this site: and download the Toyota Prius User-Guide. I found it extremely helpful as all the information in it has been provided by Prius owners.

    The site as a whole is quite interesting. John1701 keeps it updated and I go into on a regular basis. John is also a regular contributor to this thread and an example of the type of people we have here. Information about the Prius and answer fussing and fighting (thanks to Sylvia). :)

    I really enjoy my Prius and know that you will too.

  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    My only irritation with Toyota about this car is their "glitzy" way of naming the colors. Why not just metallic blue, metallic green, black, white, etc. ?

    Because if car companies called paint colors "white", "black", "red" etc. the marketing people who think up those exotic names like "Tideland Pearl" wouldn't be earning their salaries! I guess it's also recognition that people often buy cars for emotional reasons. Besides, I kind of like the fact that my low-buck Elantra is "Champagne" instead of "tan". :-)
  • rpgolferrpgolfer Posts: 157
    azstan- Thanks. I've been reading and asking questions on this TH for a couple of months now. It's been difficult to choose between Camry, Corolla and Prius. I'll check out John's site because he knows what he's talking about and has answered a few of my queries in the past. Looking forward to learning more.

  • I have always used Auto A/C. How does this reduce mpg?
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    It reduces mpg by running the A/C compressor more than it needs to. The more the compressor runs, the more the ICE has to run to recharge the battery. During most of the year where I live, I can get by just fine without A/C. There's maybe a total of 3-4 weeks when it's too warm to get by just on fresh air. Then of course there's the cool, damp days where the A/C is useful for defogging. But maybe the A/C will need to run more on the Prius than on my other cars because it also functions to cool down the battery--I have read that it will kick in by itself in that case, even if I have switched it off.
  • At the beginning of February I ordered a new Prius and gave the dealership a fully-refundable deposit. A few days later, I called to check to see if the factory accepted the order. My salesman told me they had, and he would notify me as soon as he received a production date. Can the factory arbitrarily cancel my order if it decides to stop building '04s and begin production on the '05s?
  • Back in 2001 when the Prius was introduced here in the U.S., Toyota was building the cars based on individual orders. These people who ordered those cars where later called the "prius pioneers". The "build as you order" system has long been stopped. Toyota builds a number of units monthly regardless of orders. Right now, domestic and overseas demands exceeds factory output and hence, long wait times for people who wanted it. Your dealer gets monthly allocations on these cars. One of the biggest Toyota dealer here in So. California (sold over 30,000 cars last year) says thay have no control on what is coming in. They give their list to Toyota and hope for the best. Once they get a list of whats coming in, that is when they look at their orders and allocate each car to certain buyers. I must be one of those lucky one since it took only 28 days to get delivery of the car I wanted. 16 days after I ordered one, the dealer offered me a car with a different color. I refused that one.

    I certainly would like to know about the salesman calling you up about an specific production date. The production cycle for the 05 models would most likely start in July or August.
  • Did anyone have the dealership install leather seats? What did you pay? I was told it would cost $1695.
  • I live in Central Texas near Ft. Hood. No dealerships around me keep the cars in stock. When I went to order a new 04 Prius I was told there was an 8-12 month waiting list. So I emailed dealerships in Dallas and Ft. Worth. They told me 4-9 months wait. Now, the dealership in Dallas says if I order now, I can get an 05 by July, and he will personally deliver it to me. Hmmm. Wonder if the dealership is taking me for a ride. I have looked at the Honda Accord and Hybrid. Unfortunately I'm short (4ft. 9in) and my feet can't push in the pedals all the way in the Hybrid with the seat as far forward as it will go. I really love the Prius, but with the long waiting and the possibility that I won't get what I want since there are so many orders ahead of me, I think I'll just wait until the future until I have the time to wait. My current car is dying and I'm husband is on his way to Iraq as a government contractor. I don't want to sink more money into our two dying vehicles that need to be re-registered at the end of this summer. I'll be honest, I'm not very happy with Toyota. Honda keeps vehicles on their lots including six or seven of the hybrids at a time...but Toyota... you have to put in a factory order and there is such a long wait period and ultimately you may not get what you want. Plus Toyota says they are charging an extra $2000 on top of the MSRP for whatever package you decide to get on your Prius. That is ridiculous. This shopper is very dissatisfied and is going to Honda to get a good deal. Good luck to those of you with more patience than me!
  • m4ethm4eth Posts: 101
    Unfortunately the Prius is in extremely high demand and supply is short...but the $2000 dollar price mark-up is uncalled for!!!!!! I too had a dealer in Dayton Ohio that marked the car up $2000 dollars and refuses to take orders (poor way to get more $$$)...I have ordered from another dealer...but the wait may be 6-9 months. Until Toyota increases the production of this vehicle then economics rule...but the price mark-up is unwarranted and Toyota should consider this illegal for a dealer. If you need a car now that gets good mileage and relable...go for the Corolla or Echo...both great cars around 38 MPG on highway...but Honda is also a wise choice especially the Civic or Accord.

    Toyota dealers need to learn how to treat customers other wise they will loose dedicated and loyal customers...myself included.

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