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Prospective First Time Prius Buyer


DrNBC
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Hello all.

I am strongly considering purchasing a used Toyota Prius to replace our existing car. I have a great deal of questions regarding years (generations), options and a few technical concerns. It would be greatly appreciated if I could get the opinions of Forum's Prius owners. 

The most pressing question centres on the year or generation in which to purchase. I have come across a few low mile '08s & 09s as well as an abundance of newer '10 & 11s, some with 100,000+ miles. Seeing how this will be our first hybrid, is there a general rule regarding age and mileage (repairs, Battery life, etc.)? As much as we would like to be purchasing a new one, current finances and the price of these cars is almost prohibitive.

If I could get a sense of what people think regarding older Prius cars, it would g a long way toward informing and narrowing the choices.

 

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Good idea. We could go as high as £9000 if it is the right vehicle.

In terms of options, I quite like the Park Assist feature. Leather seats (we have a muddy dog) would be nice but not essential. Also, I do not have much of an understanding regarding iPod (USB) and bluetooth connectivity. How does one play music through an iPod or iPhone on an older model? Are "after-market" (apologies for the North American term) USB or stereo installs difficult? Is this much of an issue for drivers?

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Test drove a 2010 T3 this morning. Very low mileage, but it had a leaky roof. Not sure why. 

I know that the T3 is the base model, but does anyone know when Toyota put USB ports in the Prius? I think that it is more likely with a T Spirit, especially one with Sat Nav, but is there any sense of when Toyota did this? 2011 maybe?

Thanks.

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There were no USB ports in the 2010 I had and the next facelift and audio change was the 2012 model, so maybe the 2012 facelift gen 3 ?

2010 has foglight under indicators, 2012 has foglights in lower grill and DRLs under indicator

 

2010 2010Gen3.jpg

2012 2012Gen3.jpg

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My 2012 (post facelift) Prius T3 had the SatNav upgrade, and did have a USB port, but I'm not sure if that was just because of the SatNav upgrade or whether they all had USB.

The Gen 2 and Gen 3 T3 did not have cruise control, but everything is in the car except the switch.  I got my dealer to install the switch on my T3s and the cruise control was wonderful.

The 2012 facelift also got electrically folding door mirrors, which I don't think we on the 2010-2011 versions (could be wring though).

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I think it was when they changed to Touch and Go audio they added the USB. I had a 2012 Prius+ T-Spirit with T&G Pro Nav that had a USB port, IIRC you could play songs on it (I only used it for updates TBH) but I don't know whether the T3 and T4 without nav had a USB.

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It seems that the 2011 10th Anniversary limited edition has USB. I've been told that it is essentially a T Spirit with some special changes to the interior/exterior. 

Any experience with this particular model?

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On 2/11/2017 at 2:45 PM, DrNBC said:

The most pressing question centres on the year or generation in which to purchase. I have come across a few low mile '08s & 09s as well as an abundance of newer '10 & 11s, some with 100,000+ miles. Seeing how this will be our first hybrid, is there a general rule regarding age and mileage (repairs, battery life, etc.)? As much as we would like to be purchasing a new one, current finances and the price of these cars is almost prohibitive

 

 

The later gen2 prius is possibly a better buy than an early gen3 prius.  As for miles, 100,000+ is not unusual.  My gen3 had 135,000 after 6.5 years.  The facelift gen3 prius in 2012 had the new touch and go headunit which came with USB.  The original T3 and T4 only had a 3.5mm jack aux socket (and no screen).  The T Spirit with the hard drive satnav had a USB.  I fitted an aftermarket head unit on my 2009 T3 gen3 (as did some others).

As well as the usual Prii, there are also the Prius+ and the PlugIn Prius models around.  If you are just after the hybrid technology, you could look at the Auris which can also come as an estate (could be handy for your dog), and the Yaris (might be too small).

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1 hour ago, johalareewi said:

 

The later gen2 prius is possibly a better buy than an early gen3 prius.  As for miles, 100,000+ is not unusual.  My gen3 had 135,000 after 6.5 years.  The facelift gen3 prius in 2012 had the new touch and go headunit which came with USB.  The original T3 and T4 only had a 3.5mm jack aux socket (and no screen).  The T Spirit with the hard drive satnav had a USB.  I fitted an aftermarket head unit on my 2009 T3 gen3 (as did some others).

As well as the usual Prii, there are also the Prius+ and the PlugIn Prius models around.  If you are just after the hybrid technology, you could look at the Auris which can also come as an estate (could be handy for your dog), and the Yaris (might be too small).

Thank you for your response. 

Was that an expensive aftermarket fit for the head unit?

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Aftermarket for a gen3 isn't too bad.  It has a double din hole which will take standard units but you will need some special trim pieces to make it look nice.  The dashboard is curved and comes in left hand and right hand flavours.  You can get OEM style units that are a straight swap but most of these are for the LHD (USA/Europe) market and don't fit our RHD gen3s.  Aftermarket for gen2 is not so easy.  Have a look over on Prius Chat forums for in depth information about headunit replacements.

https://priuschat.com/forum/gen-3-prius-audio-and-electronics.98/

https://priuschat.com/forum/gen-2-prius-audio-and-electronics.13/

Note: The gen3 model II in the USA is similar to our T3/T4 (ie no touch screen as standard).

 

Here is my installation write up (on this forum)

 

 

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I have just p'exed my 2008 gen 2 Prius for an Auris 2014 hsd and I have to say I miss my Prius it was a fantastic car, not as economical as the Auris but easily go mpg's in the 50's. when I first got my Prius I was unsure whether I had done the right thing for the first couple of weeks but now I'm hybrid all the way, anyone thinking of a Prius I say go get it you won't be disappointed.

 

on a footnote I put Michelin crossclimate tyres on mine as the stock tyres are very poor in the snow and icy conditions.

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I have been having a look at cars in the area. It is the strangest thing. There are quite a few Gen. 2 cars available with less than 50,000 miles. There is the odd 2009 with 40,000-ish miles that are affordable. The jump to the 2010/2011 is quite high and most of the cars in the area (SE England) tend to be around £10,000. There is a decent 2009 (09 Reg) T Spirit with 49,900 miles that is around £5500. The jump to a similar mileage in a 2010 is around £4000-5000 more.

I took out a 2011 10th Anniversary model today. Had only 35,000 miles on it. Was in great condition, but the asking price is a shade under £12,000. :(

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I was in a similar position as yourself, with a similar budget. Looked at prius and what was available for what money. Then I started looking at Auris hsd instead, and found they are 2/3 to 3/4 the price of a prius but uses a fraction more fuel, so there is potential to save thousands of pounds. They are mechanically very alike, a little shorter in hatch back form, and the estate has a good size boot. The Auris dash layout is much more normal and has its hand brake in the correct place. So for me it was a easy choice, I bought a used Auris and saved myself £3000+

 

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Thanks. I'm sure I'll have some more questions once we collect it. 

Many thanks to unclepoo for the suggestion. It made complete sense. We were trying to shoehorn a Gen.3 Prius into our budget which couldn't really accommodate it. Hopefully in a few years time...

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Congrats from me too, welcome to the clan!

As someone who's driven over 280,000 miles in hybrids since 2002, I couldn't live with anything else (at least until a workable EV that meets all my requirements comes along).

The driving experience in all of them (right up to the Lexus LS with it's 5 litre V8 engine and enormously powerful electric motors [I didn't own one of those, just borrowed one!]) feels broadly similar (although some shift a bit more than others!).  In terms of the Toyota offerings, it's down to budget and what features are important.

Personally, I've had digital instruments since 2000 (over 310k miles) and would rather gouge my eyes out than go back to old fashioned dials, but each to their own.

(PS Robert - before Frosty says it, you might like to update your profile re what car you drive!)

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5 minutes ago, Slasher_uk said:

...The thing that does annoy me with it is road spray on the rear window.

As least it's got a rear wiper, unlike the first generation Prius (the £75,000 Tesla model S doesn't have one either - yuk!)

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