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Toyota Prius



  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    I want to be clear - I would only use the Prius license plate frame if I actually owned a Prius.

    I have low-energy clothes washer and dryer. Photovoltaic electricity being generated on my roof. 90% of my home energy consumption is done at night (when more power is available and is cheaper). I recycle. I reuse. I remodeled my home in a very sustainable way.

    But I KNOW if I buy an SRX someone is gonna key it because I am a PIG.

    maybe if I put a Save the Whales logo in the window, along with a Save Mono Lake logo, Save the Redwoods logo, Nature Cosnervancy, Audobon, NRDC, and all the other Saves I belong to.

    nah, I am still gonna get keyed
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    scrap the SRX and be "responsible" and get a Sienna. Cheaper and no one will "grill" you for driving an SUV. You need cargo space, right?
  • OK, I have decided to get in line and order my Prius tomorrow. Will get the full optioned one. Will let you know how it turns out.
  • I stopped by Mossy Toyota in San Diego and was told you cannot order a Prius anymore. That ended a month or so ago. You have to wait for them to come in now - which he predicts will be in January.
  • (Links for other 2004 Prius tech info have been posted elsewhere, but I haven't seen this one posted...although maybe it has been.)

    For a small fee, the 2004 Prius Navigation System manual PDFs are downloadable from Toyota's TIS (Technical Information System).

    Main site for registering: Toyota TIS

    Source of NAV files: 2004 Prius Navigation System Manual pdfs

    "...the NAV manual covers Bluetooth, NAV, and Voice recognition." :)
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428
    jeep2jetta : You have MR2 a 4-seater vehicle, in which
      only 2 adults can sit comfortably in
      the front seat and backseat is mostly for kids. May be adults
      in back seat can go for a short drive. Now if you buy Mini, it will
      be just another MR-2.

    But if you buy a Prius-2004, you are getting a proper 5-seater vehicle
      which can be used to take your friends and also be a daily driver
      (it gives 59 mpg in city driving).

    adp3 : I can give 2 suggestions for you.
     1. Keep your Cadillac SRX for 2 years and when Hybrid Sienna hits
          the market in 2005, you can trade in your SRX for that.
     2. If you can maintain 2 vehicles, then buy a Prius-2004 and a
          used minivan, whenever you want to go with 7 persons, then you
          can take out the minivan. Rest of the time, have fun in Prius.
  • kernickkernick Posts: 4,072
    I'm sure a lot of you folks have thought about the above in decision making. Since you can get a base model Corolla for about $12K discounted, and the Prius won't be discounted for a while, I would have a hard time actually writing the check for a Prius.

    I'll have to add the options to the Corolla to match the Prius I guess, and use the Invoice price and see how that looks. Then I can figure out the fuel savings. I think the Corolla still will be less though, AND of course it has a longer knwon history of reliability. The Prius though has the fascination of being ultra-modern.
  • yerth10...I have made up my mind. I will get a Prius. Thanks for playing devil's advocate with me. Now come the next question for all who has purchased previous Prius or have ordered the 04 model: Do you all pay MSRP or do dealers come off of the MSRP at all? I would like to know how much bargaining power I have in getting an 04 Prius. Any comments appreciated.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > Do you all pay MSRP or do dealers come off of the
    > MSRP at all?

    Right now, be grateful that you don't have to pay more than MSRP for such a high-demand, low-volume vehicle. Later next year, you'll likely see minor markdown like the classic had. (In my area, it was about $500 less.)

  • Thanks for your input John. In my area, there are three Toyota dealerships within a 20 miles radius and five total dealers if you stretch the radius to 30 miles. I hope that this fact will help me get a decent price. I will certainly be happy with $500 off of MSRP at this time...
  • pb17pb17 Posts: 33
    A recent reviewer said his mileage was 42 mpg when driven with a heavy foot. Nowhere near the 50 or 60 mpg quotes. Can these low powered vehicles be driven safely on a freeway without some aggressiveness and still achieve the EPA figures? Others quote high mpg in current non hybrid small cars. How much of this is hype and what is the reality?
  • I'm new to this board,so forgive me if I'm posting this in the wrong place...(for a second try) but I did use the search function for "snow" and found that on Aug. 6th john1701a posted saying his car had no problems with snow. I also think I read that AWD and 4WD are not as important as I'd thought and that it was all about the kind of tires you had on your car.. Is this correct and are there any Prius more owners who might tell me how their cars dealt with real snow?

  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > Can these low powered vehicles be driven safely on a
    > freeway without some aggressiveness and still achieve
    > the EPA figures?

    295 lb.-ft. of torque can't be called "low power". And 0-60 in 10 seconds will get you onto a highway without any trouble. The 2004 is a configuration that will please many.

    Low MPG from testers is commonly the result of squishy tires, overfilled oil, and speeds well above the limit. Driven & Maintained properly, higher can be achieved.

    My high-speed, long-distance, almost all highway road-trip last year (the 1,200 mile Hybrid Road Rally in my 2001 Prius) resulted in an average pump calculation of 48.5 MPG. More normal driving results in an average of 50 MPG for me... and I'm using E10 (10% ethanol), which isn't as efficient as pure gas.

    The 2004 Prius should get even better MPG.

  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    The benefit from BRISK acceleration tends to surprise people.

    They expect speeding up slowly to save gas. So they try and try with disappointing results. In reality, it's exactly the opposite that they should be doing. In other words, they should drive like they normally would.

    Pushing the pedal down rather generously is actually more efficient. Engines run better when maintaining a constant RPM near the high end. Prius will accommodate that quite nicely, if you let it.

    When the light turns green, I'm almost always the leader of the pack. That doesn't harm my 50 MPG average at all; instead, it actually contributes to it.

  • kernick,

    I compared the prius to the corolla in the "is it time to buy a hybrid...are they up to the chore?" discussion. I came up with these figures:

    Costs for 150,000 miles:

    2004 Prius:
    Price: $20480
    Fuel cost @$1.70/gal: $4636
    Oil change cost: $500
    (needs less frequent oil changes
    according to john1701a website)
    TOTAL: $25,616

    2003 Corolla (with similar amenities and accessories like power windows/locks, remote entry, and automatic transmission):
    Price: $17,075 (although you might be able to get a discount like you said)
    Fuel: $7,612
    Oil Change: $750
    TOTAL: $25,437

    So if one compares the Prius to a Corolla with similar amenities, the Prius about breaks even over it's expected lifetime. Of course, there's always that time-value-of-money factor. You have to wait several years to make back up the higher initial cost in fuel savings. You may not want to keep the car for 150,000 miles. You may not want a fully-loaded vehicle either.

    On the plus side, a Prius can do electric-only driving at low speeds and it has a continuously variable transmission. Those features might make stop & go driving much more plesant, esp. if you have to do deal with that on a daily basis.

    Hope this helps.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > Oil change cost

    Classic Prius is 2,500 miles more than Corolla. 2004 Prius (which isn't listed anywhere yet) is the same.

    > On the plus side

    2004 Prius offers a little more leg room and a lot more cargo room.

    > might make stop & go driving much more plesant

    Actually, any type of suburb driving... since the high-end for stealth in the 2004 will be around 50 MPH. And might is an understatement, just go for a test drive and you'll see.

  • antzantz Posts: 13
    ...Deductable and head turner attention with upper class status!!!
  • The dealer told me they could not take an order now as the region has not given them any way to put it in. They basically said until they get them, there is no way at this time. Oh well.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > The dealer told me

    Then you should go to a different dealer. Other people have been able to place orders recently. So that would seem to imply that the dealer simply didn't want to have to deal with one that would require such a long delivery wait.

  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    That deduction is what will make more and more buyers choose a Prius over a Corolla or maybe even a Camry. Toyota says that it has Camry legroom, so that's what you compare with. Better cargo space too. (It's a hatch!!) A Camry LE vs Prius would look like this:
    Camry LE 20th Anniversary Edition:
    $22,000 base, well equipped: $23K
    $19,995 base, well equipped: $23-$24K.
  • dupiedupie Posts: 22
    I placed an order for a 04 Prius on August 26 what is the time line that I should expect a reply from Toyota confirming the order, or don't they do that for regular orders? just computer orders? I have been following the Yahoo Groups and Edmunds with your comments, keep up the good work I am getting smarter about Prius every day because of you.
    send me a reply
  • A Prius is only a little smaller than a Camry, yet the Prius gets nearly double the fuel economy. Over 150,000 miles, the Prius saves almost $5000 in gasoline and oil change costs. So if one needs a car that is bigger than a Corolla and costs less to maintain then a Camry, the Prius is a good choice. This is especially true if one does a lot of stop & go driving (which includes "suburb driving" where there are lots of stop-signs and traffic lights). There are the environmental benefits as well.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    The Prius and Camry will both sell well because they're different people that will buy both cars. here are the buyers running into Toyota dealers:

    Group 1: Let's do the math. Shall we?
       This group is concerned with driving a car that will cost the least to own and operate and they calculate every single cost that they're going to be putting in to the car to see which one costs the least. They're educated buyers, who are very analytical and research carefully. In other words, they're Prius buyers instead of Camrys.

    Group 2: I'm gonna buy a Camry and no one will stop me.
       This group has always driven Camrys to work and play. They're very loyal to the Camry brand and would never buy an Accord even if it was a giveaway on the TV show Survivor. They're Camry buyers.

    Group 3: I'm gonna buy a Prius and no one will stop me.
          This group is very environmentally concerned and is looking for the best way to get to work will benifiting the environment. They're Prius buyers.

    Group 4: How much was that incentive again?
       This group is concerned with incentives, or the lowest purchase price of a vehicle. They don't care about anything else- just a low price for a nice and roomy ride. They're Corolla buyers.

    See where everyone fits into the Toyota buying camps? that's why sales won't drop too much on the Camry, since some people are loyal to Camrys and will never buy anything else. Prius too.
  • My dealer just got the low down on how to order so I got package 9. They said to expect the car in late Nov or early Dec. We shall see. Also ordered the Solara for my daughter (SEV6 with side curtain airbags....) That should come in one to two weeks.
  • pb17pb17 Posts: 33
    150000 miles, to me, is 15k per year times 10 years. That's a lot of miles for one owner. Most drivers trade long before that. When will the battery need replacing and what will that cost? Also, what mpg's are being used for the comparisons? How does this affect the costs?
  • Isn't there a group that wants an economical car which doesn't require many trade offs? You KNOW that the styling, hatchback functionality, cool features, LCD screen, ultra-modern design, and mileage (not to even mention the low emissions) have to count for something! Also, you aren't going to see a Prius on every corner like a Corolla or Camry.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    some people like to blend in to the crowd- in other words, if the crowd is driving Camry and Corollas, then I guess I'll have to buy one myself. the prius buyer is concerned with the cost to own of the vehicle or is a member of the Sierra Club or is environmentally concerned.
  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi All:

    ___Being an 03 Corolla LE (Auto) owner as well as an interested Prius enthusiast, I might have a thing or two to add to the discussion ...

    ___On a dollar to dollar basis, the 03 and even the 04 Prius will never pay itself off in comparison to a Corolla. I have reached a high of 44.2 mpg in the Corolla with an average over the last 6 months of ~ 41. I have a 185 mile daily commute and the 44,000 miles on the Corolla now which should give a pretty good idea as to what kind of hwy mileage is available to those driving them. I will bring up the Instantaneous Mileage readouts helping the Prius owners after more commentary ... I have spoke with an 01 and 02 Prius owners that haven’t received even 45 on average as is the case with many of the Prius reviews scattered about the web. Even those writing about the Edmunds 01 Prius review received just 41 mpg combined cycle! Maybe my case is peculiar given the almost all hwy miles and the amount driven but I am probably the type that would most consider a Hybrid.

    ___Now let’s do some gas math ... The 04 Prius will receive ~ 48 mpg on the hwy. It supposedly won’t match the Corolla in a drag race even with all the advancements to 60 but that really doesn’t matter here since the average high mileage end user is after maximum economy, not maximum performance. My Corolla receives an average of 41 in the summer and ~ 37 in the winter (3 months of the year). Over 160,000 miles (4 years in my situation), the Corolla uses ~ 4000 gallons of fuel with a 40 mpg average. The 04 Prius driving the same distance over those 4 years will consume 3,333 gallons of fuel. Since I average 60 - 65 mph in the Corolla, I will assume the EPA estimates will hold with the 04 Prius giving me that 48 mpg at the same average speed. 666 gallons of fuel over 4 years at $1.75/gallon (all time highs) comes out to be just $1,165.00.

    ___As far as maintenance is concerned, since 30,000 I have been using Mobil1 w/ a SuperTech filter and have only done 2 oil changes (30,000 and 42,500) since the Synthetic switch. 12,500 sounds about right for the 04 Prius if I were to drive the same distance on a daily basis using 0W-20. Going much further before a change is beyond my level of comfort ... In other words; both are going to cost me the same amount in the maintenance dept. I don&#146;t know what the tires cost on an 04 Prius but the GY Integrity&#146;s on my Corolla are < $50.00 per and although they don&#146;t have the traction of some more expensive brands and or models, I will purchase them again because of their longevity. The fronts have just 5/32 and the rears have 6/32&#146;s. I just rotated them (they were rusted to the hubs however :( ) so I am expecting ~ 80,000 before a change is needed. I cannot say the same for the Prius as I believe they are using some low rolling resistance tires and will be a bit more expensive? Either way, I will assume the maintenance overall will be ~ the same although in reality, I suspect the Prius to be more maintenance intensive given the added electronics and drive train (CVT not withstanding?). I will give the benefit of the doubt and say the Prius&#146; battery pack at 160,000 is as strong as new. Many older Corolla&#146;s are driven this kind of distance and appear to meet and or exceed this comparison. Differences, $0.00 with the Prius&#146; Battery pack hitting the wall at that high a mileage over those 4 yrs. more than likely.

    ___Resale? I don&#146;t know for sure on this one but a 99 Corolla w/ 160,000 is still supposedly worth 5 - $7,000.00 according to Edmunds Used car price guide. From a newly purchased 99 Corolla LE in the $13&#146;s to $6,000 you lose just $7,000. On the Hybrid side of the equation, I have already read of a few newer model year Insight owners receiving ~ $3,000 in trade w/ far fewer miles and fewer years. We are speaking of a $17K loss here! I can&#146;t say what the 04 Prius will be worth in 98 w/ 160,000 but I am willing to guess that it will be worth considerably less than an 04 Corolla LE. There was a link provided in another thread to a California company selling used Hybrid&#146;s that showed significantly higher resale (or that is what they are charging anyway?) but in all reality, the Hybrid&#146;s will probably be bathing in red ink by comparison.

    ___Now for the initial out the door pricing. Apparently, the base 04 Prius will cost $20,500 + tax no matter where you live. I have asked and have only seen a Maximum of $500 under MSRP on a Prius. My 03 Corolla LE w/ ABS, Cruise, Mats, and All Weather Guard cost just $15,200. In my locale, I have to add another 6.5% in tax to the difference for a grand total of $5,644.00 in favor of the Corolla LE. Add another $100.00 for the 04 and you should be in the ball park at ~ $5,500 in favor of the Corolla.

    ___Tax incentives. I would receive the US tax deal giving me an extra $560.00 for 1 yr. ($2,000 in a 28% bracket). Clearly an advantage of $560.00 in favor of the Prius.

    ___Let&#146;s put it all together ... Even if an 04 Prius could hold half its value at 160,000 in 08, it would only just match the 04 Corolla LE. I have the feeling given the Insight owners experience that it would be much much less. In fuel, the Prius would save me ~ $1,165. In maintenance, it&#146;s a wash. In the out the door expense category, I would lose at least $5,500 by purchasing an 04 Prius. The Tax advantage would give me $560.00 in favor of the Prius. All total not including any loss at resale in comparison to the Corolla (highly doubtful) as well as the cost of holding an additional $3,775.00 over those 4 years, I lost $3,775 and this again does not include the probably extreme depreciation of the Prius over those 4 years and 160,000 miles.

    ___There are many other reasons to own an 04 Prius (SULEV, latest technology, more std features?) but in pure dollars and cents, the 04 Prius still cannott compete as has been mentioned time and time again ...

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
    ___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.
  • Basing resale on that of an Insight is pretty dodgy -- the Insight is a two-seater with limited market appeal (which is why it was advertised in the Washington Post at about $5,000 under sticker about a year after introduction), whereas the current Prius is closer to the mainstream, and the 2004 Prius even more so.
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