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How do other drivers treat you when you're in your Prius?


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I'm thinking about buying a gen 2 Prius for work purposes. I do around 50 business miles a week, all in town for which I receive 56p per mile. The Prius makes sense. £20 tax, around 50mpg, relaxing to drive and hopefully reliable. I'm just wondering how other drivers treat Prius drivers considering the stupid image oafs like Jeremy Clarkson cursed the Prius with. I remember someone somewhere saying other drivers treated him like s*** when he was in his Prius.

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Not experience this. In fact quite the opposite. 
Burnt off a number of Essex Boy racers at lights when you boot the Prius in power mode and both engines kick in to give you that killer torque. 
your mk 2 will probably cost you 11p per mile. 

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1 hour ago, Wandering Vampire said:

I'm just wondering how other drivers treat Prius drivers

Dinner for two ? 

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1 hour ago, PaulDM said:

Not experience this. In fact quite the opposite. 
Burnt off a number of Essex Boy racers at lights when you boot the Prius in power mode and both engines kick in to give you that killer torque. 
your mk 2 will probably cost you 11p per mile. 

Thanks for that information. I was thinking about buying a gen 3 but after reading reports it seems the early gen 3 cars weren't as reliable as the gen 2. Head gasket failure being a particularly worrying problem. 

11p a mile sounds amazing. Is rust a problem?

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Not a fan of gen3 as they were a bit more twitchy. I went from 2 gen2 to a gen4

rust was never a problem for me even on my 9 year old 2007 gen2

 

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Hi Howard, and welcome to Toyota Owners Forum.                             
Prius are popular cars with taxi drivers, particularly Gen2 and probably more so Gen3. Why would that be...... reliability and low running costs. With taxi drivers, to earn money the car needs to be on the road. Toyota hybrids tend to be very reliable and the Prius engineering now is over 20 years old in the UK.                    
Body rust is not a problem. What does rust are the rear discs, and that is through lack of use. Initial braking is via the hybrid motors, so there is little use of brake discs until harder braking, which shouldn’t be the norm.             
I not any boy racer, but at traffic lights I can leave other cars behind me when I want to, even that that go half a car length over the white line or go into the cycle box. That’s because it’s an “automatic” see less drive - no gear changes which takes time away from acceleration (even a standard auto box has gear changes).              
My Prius experience has been with Gen3 and Gen4, that are 1800cc engines, how a Gen2 with 1500 engine performs I don’t know.

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Agree with all that Catlover says. Although it very rarely happens, if anybody wants to race past or cut me up then that's their problem - I just sit smugly back, enjoy the relaxing ride and think of how much money I'm saving (no RFL, 60mpg etc. etc.). Owned 2 Gen 3s now, both utterly reliable, only problem being flat 12v Battery (twice) due to lack of use (ie lockdown) and leaving interior light on overnight = not the cars' fault..

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6 minutes ago, Duffryn said:

Agree with all that Catlover says. Although it very rarely happens, if anybody wants to race past or cut me up then that's their problem - I just sit smugly back, enjoy the relaxing ride and think of how much money I'm saving (no RFL, 60mpg etc. etc.). Owned 2 Gen 3s now, both utterly reliable, only problem being flat 12v battery (twice) due to lack of use (ie lockdown) and leaving interior light on overnight = not the cars' fault..

That`s a great response David. Very wise. Common sense never leaves one does it ?

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I would endorse all that's been said.  I've done over 330,000 miles since 2002 in 2 Gen 1 Prius, 3 Gen 2, a Gen 3 and a Gen 4.  All enjoyable and trouble free.

I find the smooth, gearless progress and silent engine-off low speed travelling a lot of the time has a chilling effect, and rarely feel the need to race anyone away from the lights.  Also, I try to show respect and patience to others, never push in or drive aggressively, and I find that is reflected back a lot of the time no matter what I'm driving.  [A good example is one set of traffic lights where I'm (slightly) cheeky and join from a small access lane, bypassing a bit of the queue, but because I wait patiently for someone to let me in, most of the time someone gives way almost immediately, whereas people who try to bully their way in often find people try to block them.]

If you're able to go for a Gen 3 post 2012 face lift (if it has Daytime Running Lights it's a facelift) they don't seem to have problems - my 2012 model didn't over 60,000 in 4 years.  Personally, I liked it a lot more than the Gen 2, which had much firmer seats and suspension than all other generations.

If you get a Gen 2, have the rear suspension springs checked as they seem to break now and again (especially pre 2006 face lift models).  You can't tell when you drive it, people tend to find out at MOT time.

I loved my Gen 4 most of all, used to get 80 mpg on long journeys driven sensibly in good weather, but I was very sad to have to get rid of it because to achieve a fantastic aerodynamic drag figure (0.24) they'd made it so low I started having massive problems with my hips, which spread to my knees and back, hence the current RAV4.

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1 hour ago, Rolando1 said:

Do people accidentally get in the car thinking your an Uber driver?

Now there's a question!  Short answer: NO!

Long answer: sort of, in 2006!  After 30 years in IT, I became a London minicab driver for a year (which I enjoyed immensely), joining a start-up firm (greentomatocars) who initially had 5 Gen 2 Prius (last I heard over 600, plus some EVs and over 50 Mirai Hydrogen/Fuel Cell Vehicles, which were in the national news for clocking over 1,000,000 miles a while ago.

In the 12 months I drove the minicab I did 46,000 miles, plus 7,000 in my own Gen 1 Prius I had at the time, plus 4,000 in my partner's Micra and a thousand or two in a few other vehicles.  The rest of that year I was sleeping!

I worked for greentomatocars until 2014 when I retired, in their office as Fleet Manager until 2011, after which I worked for them from home.

No other vehicle in the world at the time would have resulted in my making that career change (today, a Tesla Model S or X might do it :flowers: ), so you could say in my case Toyota's Hybrid System was life-changing!

I would also mention my first Gen 1 Prius was only with me for 6 months - it got totalled in a crash.  Quite apart from the lower emissions and good fuel consumption (for the day), I was very taken with the way it drove as I mentioned in my earlier post.  So much so, while waiting for recovery I rang my dealer and they offered me their 6 month old demonstrator for a very special price so I was back in a Prius as soon as the insurance coughed up.

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Great experience been shared here, not much left to say 😊👌, for the the treatment you definitely get something sometimes but that comes from the famous fast and furious keep up with traffic boys that will try to show off themselves no matter what car you in if you are not ready to race with them or you are in front of them driving in their lane. , just 😂 don’t pay attention to this, drive safe. What you need to know and worry about is that all generation of Prius since gen2 are targeted by thieves for stealing catalytic converters, very high alert at the moment. 

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2 minutes ago, TonyHSD said:

... all generation of Prius since gen2 are targeted by thieves for stealing catalytic converters, very high alert at the moment. 

and Gen 1s too!.  A few of the owners I've been chatting to on another group since 2000 (and met in one or two cases at the various meets we used to have in those days) have been hit.  Some have been written off as even a pristine 20 or so year old car isn't worth very much [*], some have been repaired at their owner's expense, including one or two that were repaired relatively cheaply using 3rd party parts and a competent back street repairer.

Fair to say some other makes and non-Hybrids get hit too, but Toyota Hybrids tend to be a favourite of the thieves.  I gather some even get windows smashed (such as Merc vans) so the bonnet can be opened where the cat is in the engine bay.

[*] My second Gen 1 Prius fetched £500 in 2011 - it was 9 years old with 163k on the clock.  My dealer had offered £300, but a member of the Prius Group that used to be on the Yahoo Groups platform offered me more for it.  Even at that price, when subtracting the sale value from the £13k I paid for it as a 6 month old 8,000 mile demonstrator, and factoring in maintenance, tyres, VED (£15/year) and all other running costs, it worked out to be the cheapest car I'd ever owned (when adjusting for inflation) whether on a per month or per mile basis.  I actually paid more for petrol (£13,165) than it cost in depreciation! - A sobering thought.

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Lots of other drivers do not understand the Prius. Many have asked me how it works, Do I have to charge it etc. Some do not believe that I get over 80MPG on a warm day. I Have owned several Prius models I think the Gen 4 is the best of them all. Running around town it automatically goes on electric and when low on charge the engine kicks in. My 2017 model is exempt any road tax.

My son has a 2010 Prius; he has used it in Europe a lot. Never any faults; that car has covered about 80,000 miles. He does have to use winter tyres. In winter the Prius on normal tyres in snow and ice is not so good. Jeremy Clarkson has not got a clue. He was a car wrecker. I highly recommend the Prius.

 

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TAXI !!!!!!...........................................................

The Yaris hybrid catches people out as it gets off the line a bit quick also it's a pedestrian hunter

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12 hours ago, Rolando1 said:

Do people accidentally get in the car thinking your an Uber driver?

Well I have a Gen4 Prius but my previous Gen3 Prius was a silver like a lot of taxis are. One day, I was waiting outside a shop for my wife & a woman came dashing from her house knocked on my window & asked are you my taxi I ordered! It’s the only time I experienced that & I had that car for just under 7years. It’s never happened in the present car which is painted in hyposonic red, but give it time! 😂

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12 hours ago, Chris Dance said:

Lots of other drivers do not understand the Prius. Many have asked me how it works, Do I have to charge it etc...

My favourite was when I was silently pulling away from a petrol pump and someone called though my open widow to ask if I was in an electric car!

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I think I'm sold on the gen 2. I suppose one advantage of these cars is that they were never bought by boy racers and thrashed and abused. If full service history is present and there aren't the obvious signs of damage I should be ok hopefully. I'll do a history check of course to make sure the car isn't stolen or was scrapped etc. 

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2 hours ago, Wandering Vampire said:

I think I'm sold on the gen 2. I suppose one advantage of these cars is that they were never bought by boy racers and thrashed and abused. If full service history is present and there aren't the obvious signs of damage I should be ok hopefully. I'll do a history check of course to make sure the car isn't stolen or was scrapped etc. 

Certainly something to work into your maths if you think it’s a consideration is the amount of time the electric portion takes off the petrol motor and the fact that the ICE is limited on its max revs.  I think (probably need to be fact checked by the gurus on here ) that the gen 2 max revs are 6,500 on the ICE. 
my thoughts (just my musings) are that if a car has 50,000 miles and it’s average EV% journey time is 40% the ICE is more like 30,000 miles of a conventional non hybrid petrol. 

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44 minutes ago, PaulDM said:

Certainly something to work into your maths if you think it’s a consideration is the amount of time the electric portion takes off the petrol motor and the fact that the ICE is limited on its max revs.  I think (probably need to be fact checked by the gurus on here ) that the gen 2 max revs are 6,500 on the ICE. 
my thoughts (just my musings) are that if a car has 50,000 miles and it’s average EV% journey time is 40% the ICE is more like 30,000 miles of a conventional non hybrid petrol. 

You have to also consider that a lot of them are cold starts at a high idle tho, RPM isnt that important as the engine is driving a non conventional CVT - if looked after you can get 250K miles from the engine before it needs any sort of major work

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2 hours ago, flash22 said:

You have to also consider that a lot of them are cold starts at a high idle tho, RPM isnt that important as the engine is driving a non conventional CVT - if looked after you can get 250K miles from the engine before it needs any sort of major work

Never had an idle higher than a conventional engine. Definitely not high revs for startup and engine comes to temp in less than 5 min. I think your estimate is quite low tbh. But everyone has their own experiences on here. 

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I'm going to be covering a much smaller area very soon which means I'll be travelling around 10 to 15 miles per day. In my day I have around 15 calls to make and many are in very close proximity. My first call is often just a quarter mile from my home. I don't suppose this sort of usage is good for any car but Im sure it'd be an unmitigated disaster in a diesel. Would it be advisable to give the Prius a fast non-stop drive on an open road after my shift to try and keep it healthy? 

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It was noticeable (to me, at any rate) that starting with the 4th Gen Prius in 2016 the idle during warm-up or stationary HV Battery charging was at a higher rpm than in earlier models, and it felt a little more 'thobby' for want of a better word.  I wouldn't say it's a particularly high idle speed, though, just higher - and certainly higher than some older cars with carburettors when the auto choke kicking on a cold start.

BTW I know the Gen 1 Prius had a rev limit of 4,000 rpm, and thought in the Gen 2 it was raised to 4,500.

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2 minutes ago, Wandering Vampire said:

I'm going to be covering a much smaller area very soon which means I'll be travelling around 10 to 15 miles per day. In my day I have around 15 calls to make and many are in very close proximity. My first call is often just a quarter mile from my home. I don't suppose this sort of usage is good for any car but Im sure it'd be an unmitigated disaster in a diesel. Would it be advisable to give the Prius a fast non-stop drive on an open road after my shift to try and keep it healthy? 

Not every day, but it would do no harm once a week or so.  The 12V Battery in a Prius is relatively small, because it doesn't have to start an engine.  Once the green READY light comes on, the HV Battery manages engine starting, and also charges the 12V Battery even when the engine is not running.

Some years ago, one of my late mother's carers bought a diesel Astra for her rounds, which involved two or more dozen ¼-½ mile journeys a day, and she came seriously unstuck with it.  Even after a new Battery, it needed an overnight charge twice a week, because the short trips didn't replace the Battery charge needed to start a diesel engine, with it's higher compression and heavier components than a comparable petrol engine.  She also found it's mpg worse than her previous petrol model.

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These are great answer guys and I appreciate them. So if I buy a gen 2 from a dealer, what questions should I be asking? I know to ask if the Battery has had a health check. Anything else specific to the Prius that I should be asking? 

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