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What to expect from the next model year Prius



  • lotusfanlotusfan Posts: 9
    A simple Google search will lead you to the news articles that talk about the new 2009 Prius model. See, for example:
    (Notice the Toyota confirmation about the lithium ion battery feature of the 2009 next-generation Prius.)

    Perhaps some dealers would like you to buy now and not wait, so they are suggesting there will be no change.
  • maribagomaribago Posts: 5
    Oh, also, the whole LED dash display needs attention. It is very hard to read in bright light conditions. Deeper recesses? Brighter LEDs? I don't know. Am sure Toyota can fix this.

    And don't you just hate those cheap *plastic* triangular windows in back? Scratch-magnets, for sure. And it probably only saves 15 grams of weight.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    research on the Internet..

    The 2009's are being built now as we speak and will ship in August. There are no significant changes of any kind, packages, color, equipment, etc. Unofficially Toyota has said same to some key people in the industry, including some here at Edmunds.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Trust me on this. No I will go further. If there are any significant changes to the 2009 Prius which is due here this Sept/Oct I will send $25 to your favorite charity. No questions asked.

    The 2009's will be exactly the same as the 2008's. The 2010's which will arrive in Summer 2009 will be different. They however will not have Lithium Ion batteries. The Li-Ion batteries will only be ready for CY 2010 or MY 2011 and then probably only in very limited quantities as a 'Premium' option to the standard NiMH batteries.
  • Unfortunately I have to agree with kdhspder ... based on Internet hype (including many reputable sites including Edmunds, US News, and more) I was excited for the 2009 Prius, and was waiting to buy one until this new model arrived. After inquiring at several dealerships, however, it became clear that the 2009 (due out early this fall) will not really be any different. The 2010, however, will be. That's what I'm now going to wait for.
  • lotusfanlotusfan Posts: 9
    You can't trust what a dealership will tell you. They've got 2008's on the lot to sell you. Car salesmen have 3 types of responses -- Lies, uninformed, and stupid (sorry to insult car salesmen everywhere, but there are so many out there that really ruin it for the rest of you).

    It may be called a 2010 model, but it will appear early in 2009 -- well before the normal 2010 introduction. Some have said it will appear in January 2009, others suggest June 2009. Either way, the new model will be worth the wait to me.
  • sbell4sbell4 Posts: 446
    They've got 2008's on the lot to sell you. Car salesmen have 3 types of responses -- Lies, uninformed, and stupid

    .......Oh the irony. By saying dealers have 2008 Prius on their lots you have proved yourself to be a liar, uninformed and stupid.
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 7,770
    Let's back off the personal comments now and get back to discussing the cars please.


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  • During my local news broadcast (today-NBC- Chicago) It was announced that Toyota was releasing the "touring" model Prius for '09 and the main unique feature was a panel located in the roof to assist powering the AC of the car. This sounds good if it will take some of the load off the electric system and allow more power to the drive system. We'll see, but it sounds like a good way to add power to the hybrid system.
    Also, wouldn't it be nice if Toyota and some of the "brighter minds" in our research divisions "U.S." got together and made a battery that fullfilled the total needs of all hybrids? I hope its coming!!
  • exfrogexfrog Posts: 6
    I golf with my Toyota dealer and he told me the 09 will be like the 08 and Toyota has had significant setbacks with lithium battery research.. Next year the Prius will feature a plug-in model and will cost over 10 grand more. I have an 06 Prius and am getting an 09 in Sept. or Oct. when they arrive at my Oregon dealership. Hope this helps.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Sounds half right, half speculation and half just wrong.

    This is accurate:
    In Sept of this year the 09s will arrive and they will be exactly like the 08s
    In Jan of 09 the Chairman of Toyota will make a major announcement about the introduction of the new Gen 3 Prius and a 'Lexus Prius'.
    The 'line off ' for this vehicle is April 09 meaning it should arrive here in the Summer
    It will have a improved NiMH battery pack.
    It will not have a Li-Ion battery pack because none of the vehicle makers are certain about this technology .... yet.

    This is speculation:
    It will cost $10000 more. More than what? More than a base model at $22000, if so then it would be a bargain @ $32000.
    No pricing has been put out officially. Everything is internet chatter.

    This is wrong:
    The 09s and or the '10s next summer will have a plugin option. Toyota has said nothing on this subject other than they are testing various options now.
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    Not true at all.
    The 2009 Prius will be the same as 2008s.
    The 2010 model will be the new model with the optional solar panel.
  • imscfimscf Posts: 34
    "It will cost $10000 more. More than what? More than a base model at $22000, if so then it would be a bargain $32000. "
    Let's see: If that Prius with the solar panels (costing $32,000) get 50miles/gallon, for 15,000 miles (a year driving), you'd need 300 gallons of gas.
    If instead you'd get a Honda Civic EX (costing at most $18,000), which gets 30 miles/gallon, you'd need 500 gallons.
    So annually you'd save 200 gallons; even if the the price goes up to $5.00/gallon, you'd save $1,000/year.
    You'd need, then, 14 years to recoup the extra $14,000 (not counting the tax on the extra cost), you've spent buying that Prius instead of the Honda.
    It doesn't sound like a bargain to me!
  • lotusfanlotusfan Posts: 9
    Perhaps he meant $1000 more, rather than $10,000. A $10,000 increase isn't realistic, they would lose customers to other hybrids, and be accused of price gouging. (Not to mention that the prices on used 2007-2009 Priuses would go up) I do suspect that it will be more expensive, but they could never get away with making it $10,000 more expensive. From what we've seen and heard, nothing about it is worth a $10k increase.

    As I suggested earlier, it will be available in by the summer of 2009 (if not earlier). I read from a fairly official Toyota source (I can;t remember which) that it will have Lithium-Ion batteries. There have been rumblings that this might have changed to question it. However, Toyota is sufficiently confident in Li-Ion battery technology that they will be producing them in a joint venture starting in 2009. Perhaps these batteries will make it into the next gen Prius by the summer of 09.

    On a final note, I don't know how you've been talking to, but I've been getting sales offers on Priuses that are either on the lot or on their way to the lot not yet sold. This was true of dealers I was in contact with in Virginia, Maryland, Colorado and New Mexico. So I am neither a liar, uninformed or stupid (such comments are truly uncalled for). I just do my research before I open my mouth.

    I'm still waiting for the next gen Prius which I expect to see in 6-12 months in 2009. I even prefer the look of the new one.
  • maribagomaribago Posts: 5
    A $32k version ($22k + $10k)? If offered with Lexus-level finishes/options and a Lithium battery, this could probably sell.

    But Toyota would be wise to keep the standard Prius at the current price. Honda's trying hard to nip them on the low end and the new Honda hybrid-only model will squeeze their market share seriously if Toyota gives it a chance.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    The upper frame doesn't look like a picture at all, but a computer-generated image. The lower frame looks a little more "real" but also photo-shopped, I suspect.
  • fookahnfookahn Posts: 3
    I was told that the 09 will not come out until after MARCH, 2009. It will not even be seen until the Detroit auto show Jan / 2009. I put my money down for the 09 passing up the 08 awhile ago. All 09s are 3rd generation. (Bigger car/engine, better mileage) 2010 will be out in 09 back on schedule, cutting 09 manufacturing down to less then a standard model year Lith-Ion, (Plug in), sure who knows.

    If what your golf buddy said is true, then why is it so quiet in Japan? hush hush? Hmmmm. If the car was the same as 08, then where are they???? they would be somewhere. Retooling, please. You can't swing a dead cat without hitting a 09 somewhere.

    Dealer says long long wait for 09, the cars are not in manufacturing much less out of engineering stages. My 09 Prius is coming from largest Toyota dealer in mid-west, I signed agreement that I must pay the MSRP listed online at Toyota web site.

    Toyota said almost nothing about 2009 car, why? Because it must still be in planning stages, otherwise they would be screaming come and get it. No lots of bad information and guessing out there, Take what Toyota says to the bank. The solar cell talk, yeah, possible, who knows.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    I heard it's the 2010 model that won't come out until early next year. The 2009 model is supposed to be out this fall.

    If it's the next-gen 2010 model that people are "waiting for", maybe the title of this discussion needs to be changed?
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Oh NO...not this again. Comparing unequals is the worst kind of logical fallacy then to compound the error by ignoring the question of resale invalidates the conclusion. Literally it's a half-baked analysis.

    Most importantly ...... you misread the post. The $10000 premium was discussing the plug in option. I don't think that you've spent much time in the hybrid forums to understand the background to the $10000 premium question.

    You might want to familiarize yourself with some of the posters who are chomping at the bit to get a PHEV Prius or Volt. Ask yourself this question. 'Why are they so eager to pay up to $40000 to get one of these puppies?'

    Actually I think that you are right - but for a completely different reason ( unstated but implied ) - but you chose the wrong vehicle for your comparo.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    The 2009's are being built now, today.
    They are exactly the same as the 2008's.
    The Chairman of Toyota will introduce the new Gen 3 Prius at the NAIAS in Detroit in January.
    The 'line off' of this vehicle in Japan will be April 2009 as a 2010 model.
    Normally it should arrive here in Summer 2009.
    It will have NiMH battery technology in the first year or two.

    Then... if all engineering tests are completed and results found to be satisfactory the Li-Ion technology will debut in late 2010 or 2011, depending.

    Everything else is speculation.

    Toyota has been leaking and confirming these data to certain well-placed sources such as Edmunds here and among others. Rampant speculation however does help keep the pot boiling on the Net.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    But Toyota would be wise to keep the standard Prius at the current price. Honda's trying hard to nip them on the low end and the new Honda hybrid-only model will squeeze their market share seriously if Toyota gives it a chance

    A lowend Honda hybrid will never be serious competition to a Prius simply because it will be too basic and too small. It will probably be at least equal if not better in FE as compared to the current Prius but maybe not so competitive to the Gen 3.

    Then there is allegedly a new family of Prius' coming out soon including one smaller to compete directly with the HCH and the new hybrid-only model. This one is very likely to be a lot smaller and a lot more basic and A LOT better on FE than either the standard Prius or the HCH or the new Honda hybrid.
  • maribagomaribago Posts: 5
    "A lowend Honda hybrid will never be serious competition to a Prius simply because it will be too basic and too small. It will probably be at least equal if not better in FE as compared to the current Prius but maybe not so competitive to the Gen 3."

    kdhspyder, I see you are a 3-posts-a-day heavy forum user, so I want to defer to you. But help us out here: how can you be sure the new hybrid-only Honda will be "too basic and too small" compared to the Prius? I wouldn't underestimate a company with resources and the history of Honda. (Btw, I too have a 2005 Prius, so my bias should be toward Toyota, just like yours)
  • lotusfanlotusfan Posts: 9
    If the $10,000 premium is for the plug-in option, then it is overpriced. You can buy a plug in-conversion for your current Prius for $5000. Building it in the car at the time of manufacture is going to be cheaper (lower costs due to significantly higher volume, lower costs due to not modifying the car after it is produced, lower cost due to more automation in production). Further, industry estimates suggest that a plug-in option could added to production for $3000-$5000 (or less, depending on volume).
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    The info available is that Honda is looking for a Fit-sized hybrid, i.e. smaller than the HCH. In this market for the most part small means basic. We Americans don't like to pay high prices for small cars.

    Also I think that with the least expensive hybrid now on the road starting about $22000 that there's a huge potential for Honda to gain a big slug of buyers in the $18000+ range. But to get down to this price level something has to give, it's usually the size and the content.

    As a side note, and this is my own personal opinion, I think that for the present the four main hybrid makers are intentionally NOT treading on each others toes. Note that none of the 'true hybrids' on the road today compete against another hybrid in the same class. This is NOT a coincidence IMO. To keep this order Honda will go lower and more basic ISO going after the Prius. It's also good business.

    If Honda does go after the Prius with a new hybrid then I'd expect Toyota to go after the HCH with it's own smaller Prius sedan. The agreement would be broken in this case.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    I agree but for those who are desperately seeking a plugin it's not too much of a stretch if the warranties are similar in length.

    The Volt has already been announced at coming to market in the $40000 range. But....there's a huge unmentioned factor in this. GM has been working the halls of Congress to get a significant tax break credit for all plugins and EREVs. By announcing that they plan to sell it for $40000 I'm certain that they are confident of a $5000 - $10000 tax credit for the buyers. Now the net difference is only about $3000-$5000 over a top trim Toyota. Slick move on their part this would be. The Volt is announced to get 40 gas-free miles. The Prius PHEV is expected to get maybe 20 gas-free miles.

    But on the Toyota side this is what I'd expect to see. The Prius is going to remain the main driving force simply because to most its name means 'hybrid'. This is why Toyota is looking to expand the lineup both smaller and larger with 3 or 4 or 5 different 'Prius models'.

    If it remains the basic hybrid in Toyota's lineup then it will remain as a NiMH hybrid simply because this technology is so stable, so durable and now after 1.3 million vehicles so cost effective.
    NiMH Prius' ranging from $22000 up to $30000 with different amenities. Then in 2011 a plugin model with Li-Ion technology as a 'super trim' in the $35000 or $36000 price range. From recent indications from Toyota these PHEV Prius' will number in the several hundred at first. Toyota has never been very excited by this concept at all.

    I tend to agree and I think you would too. Too expensive for too little benefit. However over at PriusChat and other sites there is a hardcore group of EVs that can't wait to spend the money for one. For me when my current 'outdated' Prius is used up at 250,000 or 300,000 miles I'll probably just go with another NiMH 'traditional' model in the low 20's....or a used one.

    Nevertheless with such a HUGE and wealthy market I'm sure that Toyota ( and GM ) will find all the buyers they want in the $30000-$35000 range. If these buyers happen to have the perfect commute or annual usage they could stop buying petro-fuel forever.

    Just as an example one 1 fillup every 6 months vs a 33 mpg Corolla or Civic. Both driven 12000 mi/yr at an average cost of $5 / gal over 7 yrs of driving. For those that hate the oil companies, or hate the oil producers or want to use no fuel for environmental reasons it's very very seductive to buy a vehicle that uses no fuel. They are apparently more willing to pay some 'premium' to an auto company rather than to an oil company. This is a perfectly valid reason for buying also.

    There are a lot of GM proponents over at GMI that can't wait to shell out $35000-$40000 ( with an expected credit ) in order to get GM back on its feet thus to stick it to the oil companies who they see as putting GM in the mess they are now.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "Also I think that with the least expensive hybrid now on the road starting about $22000 that there's a huge potential for Honda to gain a big slug of buyers in the $18000+ range. But to get down to this price level something has to give, it's usually the size and the content. "

    The Fit is already pushing 18K (sports model), so a hybrid version is more likely at 20K or so. BUT it should get much better MPG than the HCH due to it's smaller size and lower weight. Plus, it is a hatchback.
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    Toyota has decided to build the next-generation Prius in the United states to better address changes in consumer demand.
    To do this, they will move Highlander production to one of the Tundra assembly plants and build Tundras in only one plant.
    This will also deal with changes in the value of the US dollar vs the Yen and reduce overcapacity for building Tundras.
  • fookahnfookahn Posts: 3
    Yes, you are right, THANKS. I called my dealer and said you are correct, I made the mistake, Sorry.

    As far as wait for 2010, I will get my 2009 and keep it until 2010's are out, sell the 2009 for about what I paid. The old Prius's hold the value very well, having said that the 2010's production may choke the market reducing the value of the used Prius.

    Dealer says that production is underway.
  • dmathews3dmathews3 Posts: 1,739
    For most vehicles that doesn't hold true. when a new model comes out there is a bigger than normal drop in price. Why would someone want to give you what/almost what you paid when they could buy for a few bucks more a 2010 with all new technology? I'm sure they are thinking the same as you, I want the new one that will be the same for at least the next 5 years.
This discussion has been closed.