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  1. 9 points
    I am now the proud owner of a 17-plate Prius PHV in Hypersonic Red. Generally speaking, I don’t like red cars, but for some reason I like this one. I'm sure I will be posting more about it in due course. Here's a nice picture of it: However, the process of getting to the stage where this particular car is sitting on my drive has been nothing less than tortuous. What I was expecting to be a joyful process full of anticipatory excitement turned out to be an arduous and depressing slog, as my wife and I travelled hundreds of miles around the country seeking the 'right' car, only to discover an almost-uniformly awful experience at each Toyota dealership we visited. I should perhaps point out that this is likely to be a long post, written more for my own cathartic benefit than for anyone else's interest, so here’s the tl;dr up front, to save you the effort of reading through the drivel beneath: Uninterested, uninformed dealers making half-hearted attempts to sell cars, often in worryingly-dubious condition, for staggeringly random prices. Anyway, if you do want to read on, here's the unexpurgated version. It's not pretty... To start with, what the juddering hell is the deal with pricing on these cars? It's insane. Brand spanking new Prius Excel PHVs are available through Carwow for £27.5k, so why would anyone pay more than that for a used one with a few thousand miles on it? Yet we found tens for sale, well above that price point. The bizarrely specific numbers like £28,471 suggested some kind of machine-learning algorithm at play. I can only assume this was locked in some kind of infinite rank-ordering comparison loop, as I actually saw individual vehicle prices going up as well as down in the time I was monitoring them. Unsurprisingly, these optimistically-priced specimens are all still for sale now, having spent months on forecourts already. I am utterly baffled at what is happening here. Even more mystifying was the price differential between apparently identical cars. We found cars with the same specs, age and mileage, for sale at up to £5k difference in sticker price. In one case, this difference was between two cars at the same dealership! Granted, the cheaper one was in Dishwasher White but even so, you've got to really hate kitchen appliances to pay five large more for Decuma Grey, right? Price had seemingly no bearing on condition, either. And, on the subject of condition, the state we found some of these cars in was shockingly poor, given that they were all Toyota Approved cars with minimal miles, less than 18 months old. The first one we saw had done fewer than 2,000 miles yet looked like it had done ten times that; it was covered in scratches inside and out, with big chips of paint missing from the front bumper. The driver's door looked like it had repeatedly been opened into a brick wall, and was down to the bare metal along its edge. Yet the conversation that followed went roughly like this: "The car is priced taking its condition into account." "Okay, but if we agree to buy it, will you get your bodyshop to sort the worst bits of the paintwork out before we collect?" "The car is priced taking its condition into account." "That’s a no, then?" "The car is priced taking its condition into account." "And you're not prepared to make any kind of reduction to account for the poor condition, to cover the cost of getting it sorted ourselves?" "The car is priced taking its condition into account." "Right. Bye, then." Then there was the one that turned out to have done over 3,000 miles more than advertised, with a replacement windscreen that had somehow been re-fitted with no seals around it, leaving huge gaps and the plastic scuttle flapping in the breeze, along with two strips of glue residue on the roof from where they'd used the wrong tape to hold it in. "Don't worry, we'll get the workshop to look at the windscreen and get it sorted for you before you pick up the car." "Right. Would that be the same workshop that made such a godforsaken mess of it the first time around?" "Er, yes..." "Er, bye then." And then there was the one that had a big dent in the lower side panel, and which had been run by the dealership boss for 18 months but somehow hadn't been serviced at all in that time. "Don't worry, we'll fix the dent with a bit of filler and we'll service it before you buy it. The manufacturer's warranty will be fine." "You mean the warranty that Toyota specifically state will not be fine, as any items which fail in future as a possible result of lack of servicing will not be covered?" "No, it will be fine. Let me get my service manager to explain why both you and the Toyota website are wrong about this." "No, let me get my coat, and remind me never to assume that Toyota dealers understand their own service intervals and warranty conditions." Still, if some of the cars were poor, the actual experiences and interactions in the showrooms were worse. Here's a flavour of what we endured: Being left waiting for ages whilst the salesman 'found the best price' for my car, only for him to finally come out and offer £1k less than we both knew it was worth. Pro-tip: We all know you can look up a valuation in 30 seconds. If you're going to bid me in the nuts for my car, at least have the common decency not to make me wait for half an hour before you do. Especially not when you're keeping me from my lunch. Being seated directly in front of glass pane windows, squinting into the baking sun, in a showroom that inexplicably didn't have air conditioning, waiting for the salesperson to arrive whilst being forcibly engaged in toe-curlingly banal conversation by a painfully enthusiastic teenager wearing a badge that actually – I kid you not – gave his job title as Host. Pro-tip. Try to ensure you offer a buying experience that doesn't run the risk of contravening the Geneva Convention as a form of cruel and unusual punishment. You may just sell more cars. Being told that the person I'd agreed to meet at the specified time wasn't available, being asked to wait until someone else could see us, then being dealt with by a surly, uncommunicative teenager who had no interest in selling the car and whose knowledge about the product he was supposed to be persuading us to buy was utterly non-existent. He even checked his phone a few times during our conversation. Pro-tip: If you really must employ useless millennials who can't grasp the concept of turning up at an agreed time and place, at least make sure the backup isn't a social media addict from Generation Zombie. Being told that the dealership couldn't provide a valuation for my car at all, unless I first agreed I would definitely buy their car from them and not go elsewhere. Pro-tip. That. Is. Not. How. It. Works. You've just let me walk away, and I will not be coming back. Ever. You can call me all you like the day after. But, just as you discovered, I won't be answering. Being told that my wife couldn't sit next to me in the front for the test drive as the salesman had to be there in case he needed to 'grab the wheel' when I was driving. Pro-tip: Try to avoid insulting your customer's driving ability before they've even got in the car. Oh, and never let my wife ride behind you when you've just ****** her off. We nearly did crash in the end, because I was too busy laughing at her in the rear view mirror as she made gestures behind your back suggesting your proclivity for indulging in onanistic pleasure. Frankly, you were lucky she didn't garotte you with your spivvy skinny tie. Being told that there was 'no room for negotiation' on the initial cost to change you offered. Pro-tip: There is always room for negotiation. Otherwise *cough* you might end up with your car still on your forecourt, at a *cough* considerably reduced price that is now hilariously less than what I was actually willing to pay you weeks ago. Ha ha ha and, indeed, ha. Being told on the phone that I had to pay a £100 'refundable deposit' in order to make sure the car would be available to view the next day. Pro-tip: Wait, what? I don't even… kthxbye. Even when we actually found a car in decent nick that wasn't horrifically overpriced, defective or abused, it was a struggle to complete the purchase. I think it was the young salesman's first ever experience of dealing with someone who didn't want finance. Or possibly just his first ever experience of selling a car. He was giddy with excitement, which was actually quite endearing at first. We finally agreed a price that I was happy to pay, shook hands on the deal, then he went round the back to get the paperwork. All seemed to be going well. Then he returned, looking very sheepish and informed us that we'd have to pay £1 more than we'd just agreed. He explained that he'd exceeded the amount by which he was 'allowed' to discount the car, so would we mind paying a pound more? After my wife and I realised that he wasn't actually joking, we obviously told him to do one. A gentleman does not renege on a handshake, FFS! However, I did generously agree to sign the paperwork for the higher amount if he gave me a quid from his own pocket there and then. Panicking now, and not having any cash himself, he was out of ideas so I suggested he went round the back for a whip-round. I fully expected him to return with a handful of loose change. However, he eventually came back having apparently got permission to put the lower amount through on the card machine whilst keeping the extra £1 on the paperwork. Seriously, that happened. In all honesty, if we hadn't have closed the deal on that one then we'd probably have just thrown in the towel and bought a brand new one on finance. I have a sneaky suspicion that this may actually have been Toyota's plan all along: overprice your used stock and make the buying-for-cash experience so awful that people give up and finance a new one instead. I’m glad we didn't, as I've ended up with what seems to be a decent example, obtained in the end for a fair price. But next time? I'm not sure I'll have the energy. I might just have to accept that long-term ownership is a dying scene, and give in and join the masses on their 3-year contracts and monthly payments...
  2. 5 points
    Bear with me here..... Do you remember compact fluorescent bulbs we had back in the 90s and 00s. They were ok but had lots of drawbacks like they take a while to “warm up”, they were quite large, full of mercury and it was very difficult to use a dimmer with them. They were introduced as they were “more environmentally friendly” using old technology. Basically quite a few drawbacks and they weren’t particularly popular. Then in 2010s the world was properly introduced to LEDs. These bulbs can easily replace traditional bulbs, were available in many colours, used less energy and lasted much longer. The only drawbacks was the high price though now they’re much more popular the price has plummeted and they’re absolutely everywhere. My point is that if the world was offered a genuine alternative to a traditionally powered car that could travel at least 300 miles per “tank” and only took 5 mins to fill up again the market would absolutely explode within 5 years.
  3. 5 points
    I understand that the sounder must be carried by a person walking in front and carrying a red flag. 😁
  4. 5 points
    Protection against thieves? Well, it used to be called the law but then all sorts of protectional clap trap was introduced by do-gooders and found more easy to enforce than actually stopping the people from taking what doesn't belong to them. Now, you aren't allowed to give the individual who is helping themselves to your property a good pasting. Apparently, one of the most effective deterrents is prayer and the fear of being smited for ones sins by the almighty or in the case of prius catalytic converters, hope that God is looking and lets the jack slip.
  5. 5 points
    Lots of debate this time of year whether winter tyres or not. On 29th Jan 2019 it dumped with snow over the snake pass in the Peaks with very expensive 4x4's on their standard summer tyres failing to get over the top and even making the point of winding down their window to tell me that I had no chance on making it as they had tried twice & failed. I had lots of surprised faces when I passed them all and I was the only one over the top at 3pm on Tuesday afternoon - Winter tyres are the way forward if you live in an area that gets is bad!
  6. 4 points
    Although it is off-topic, if the cyclist had had insurance, he wouldn't be in such dire financial straits. In the UK, a bicycle is considered as a vehicle, and, in my view, legally, cyclists should be required to have insurance if the cycles are used on public roads - same as any other vehicle. Back to the original topic, please.
  7. 4 points
    There were a few reports in the press a while ago that leasing companies had cars returned at the end of their lease (typically 3 years for company cars) where the charging cable was still in a sealed wrapper. The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV was mentioned a few times, as it sold like hot cakes and probably still will to some extent as I suspect the primary appeal to business drivers is the Benefit In Kind tax rate more than the purchase subsidy, although the subsidy may well have brought the car into a price range that allowed more company car drivers to choose one. Whilst not conclusive, as some may have charged on a home unit that came wit ha cable and/or charging station that had a cable, my observation from my days of company car use is that many don't even dip the oil during their tenure, so plugging is by no means likely in all cases, especially where the fuel is paid for by the employer.
  8. 4 points
    Like PeteB says:-
  9. 4 points
    Thank you for your observations. Most of what you said was with reference to electric only vehicles. All you said I took into consideration but still decided to ditch my Qashqai and bought my first hybrid - a Auris hybrid. Loved it so much I now have a Prius (all Prius are hybrid or plug-in hybrid). The battery now has a Toyota 15 year warranty so long as you have a battery health check every year - free if you have the car Toyota serviced. Even if a cell went down, they are individual cells and can be replaced individually for not a lot of money. Prius has been on the uk market now for 20 years and not a lot go wrong with them, other then what all cars have to deal with ie tyres, suspension, brakes etc. The engineering of the hybrid system as bullet proof as can be. I just done 27.9 miles today in four separate journeys and clocked 81.1 mpg, done in a very comfy car that I think WILL not depreciate as much as you may think. And there is more to like a hybrid then just good mpg. I pretty pleased on the switch and would not now like to go back. Hydrogen may rule the car sales in 30 years, but we living now, and I certainly wont see 30 years time or if I do I will not be capable of driving. So happy with what i got.
  10. 4 points
    I don't really see the point in Toyota going to great lengths to produce a vehicle which is as economic and feasible as possible, to be bought by people who want to take off some of the tweaks. When one sits in the car travelling from A to B, using the worlds dwindling resources as sparingly as possible, is it really necessary for us to be able to imagine what our car looks like from the outside? I am basically a skinflint and I really don't want to spend my time and money on making the outside of my car more acceptable for others to look at. I see blingy wheels as something which makes the car less economical which contradicts my original aim of driving a vehicle which is more economical. I have never admired the prius as a thing of beauty, its appearance is more like a pimple on the road surface. What I do admire is the uncompromising excellence of engineering and the fact that a company is willing to manufacture a vehicle which looks less appealing in order not to sacrifice aerodynamic gains and savings. Having said all that, to each their own.I have seen hybrid cars with empty roof racks, I park near to one on most days of the week. I see them with low, unchecked tyre pressures, I see them with the more expensive low profile wide and high drag tyres.
  11. 4 points
    I got my Gen2 new in Jan 2007, and 12 years & 107K virtually trouble-free miles later have just handed it on to my newly-married daughter. I say virtually as a couple of years ago the ABS warning lights came on, but this turned out to be a problem with the sensor and not an ABS fault. I've replaced the 12v battery once and the exhaust system once. There's no way I would give my daughter a car that I didn't think was totally reliable. No technical info to share, but for what it's worth in my view if you've got £5K to spend on a 2nd hand car, you could do a hell of a lot worse than a Gen 2 Prius.
  12. 4 points
    Wheel alignment isn't checked on service. If you have an alignment problem then an indicator would be that your tyres may show signs of uneven wear either on the outer or inner edges. Have you hit a pothole or kerb recently? That would be a reason for it pulling and if it's only just started you wouldn't see any tyre wear initially. Take it to a decent garage to get the alignment checked. Anyone with a Hunter system would be my personal choice.
  13. 4 points
    I arranged with my local Toyota dealer, Chester/Deeside area, to have 2 new tyres fitted today. All 4 tyres were hanging around 3 mm but I decided to have 2 new on the front. I have a Gen 4 Prius Excel with 15" wheels. Originals were Toyo and the dealer quoted me about 2 months ago £50 per tyre, that included balancing, new valves, disposal etc and included VAT. That matched any price I could see on the internet so booked in for today. When done I started chatting to the service guy about satnav map updates, and he offered to update today if I had time to wait for about an hour - it takes that time for the software to do its job. Job done, just had to hand over the £100 for 2 tyres. If there is another map update before my car is 3 years old end of September then they will do that freebie as well. I know some on this forum are not too impressed with their local Toyota dealer, so I thought I would give a good comment about my local dealer.
  14. 4 points
    If you want to save money, just keep the Auris. With such low mileages, I can't see how it could ever make financial sense to change the car.
  15. 4 points
    So, I’ve had my Prius PHV for two weeks, and thought I’d share a few of my first impressions, good and bad. I wanted one in Pearl White with the light grey interior, registered in March 2017 for the free tax. I ended up with one in Hypersonic Red with a black interior, registered in June 2017. I’m not very good at buying cars. However, despite having failed to meet all three criteria, I’m still happy with my purchase. And to save you wading through what follows, I can summarise my thoughts very nicely: I like this car a lot. 💕 That Tailgate! Can anyone truly say they’ve bought a car because of its boot lid? I think I can now. It’s nothing short of an engineering marvel with its double-bubble glass, uber-cool LED light strip and honest-to-god legit carbon fibre that’s subtly visible through the window. Okay, so that light strip is disappointingly fake (only the central brake light illuminates) and yes, there’s the small matter of not having a rear wiper (although interestingly the aero actually keeps the screen completely clear as long as you’re moving) but still… it is a masterpiece of geeky design. I absolutely love it. 💕 Squint, and it looks a bit like an Alfa SZ. Remaining on the subject of looks, I was trying to work out why I find the PHV more appealing to the eye than the standard Gen4, and realised that it might have something to do with looking a tiny bit like an Alfa SZ. Especially in red. I was an impressionable teenager when the SZ appeared – in fact, it arrived the same year I passed my driving test – and I’ve always harboured a liking for them. I reckon there’s more than a little of the SZ design language in the Prius PHV. They’re both unconventionally attractive. Or, perhaps, conventionally ugly. Definitely ungainly from some angles, and more than a little quirky in the detailing. And to my eyes, they share quite a few of those details: the square headlights; the steeply-raked waistline with an excess of body over the rear wheel; the black roofline and glasshouse; the full-width light strip at the rear… and the SZ had a pretty decent drag coefficient for its day as well. 💕 It’s a Smooth Operator We all know the hybrid drivetrain is supremely relaxing when driven as intended. The PHV adds another dimension – as I’m sure the standard Gen 4 also does on 15” wheels – which is a proper cosseting ride. There’s a level of bump absorption that people seem to have forgotten is actually possible in these days of huge wheels and tiny sidewalls. Yet it doesn’t flop around corners like a dying halibut either; it feels remarkably well-balanced and tied down. Incredibly, it actually delivers a more comfortable ride than my Lexus GS Premier, probably thanks to the latter’s wholly unnecessary 18” wheels. It’s a bit ridiculous that this eco-car should be so much smoother than a ‘luxury exec’ saloon, but it is. No more thumping horribly over horizontal seams on the A14; no more getting jiggled uncomfortably on badly-maintained B-roads and what were once haemorrhoid-troubling speed humps are now dispatched with nary a rectal twinge. 💕 Zero-Emission Commuting? Nearly! Having not owned a plug-in vehicle before, I was looking forward to the experience of electric-only running. My journey to work is 32 miles, give or take. It’s an easy route to drive economically and very well-suited to hybrids. I figured that whilst the official EV range of 39 miles would be hopelessly optimistic, I might manage 32 on days when it’s not cold or wet. And manage it, I have. The full-charge range has been a bit random so far, but I guess it’s getting used to my driving style. Day One, a full charge got me a disappointing 31 miles on the indicator. But, 32 miles later, I was arriving at work with 0.1 mile still showing. Day Two, I kicked off with 33 miles, but made it with nothing to spare. Day Three, I kicked off with 35 miles but the roads were properly wet and I fell short by a couple of miles. Day Four, I started with 35 miles again, but it was chillier and I fell short by a mile. Day Five, I started with 36 miles then turned the AC off completely and saw 39 miles estimated. I left the heating off and arrived at work with 3 miles still left, and rather cold feet. I won’t be doing that on a regular basis, but it was an interesting experiment. A week further on, and the indicated range is inching above 40 miles, but in reality I’m still getting similar actual range. Overall, I’m happy with that. I knew I’d be unlikely to get all the way to work outside of summer time, and it’s clear that wet roads and cold temperatures have the same big impact on economy as in any other car. In the depths of winter, I’ll probably be lucky to make it half way. However, that’s not the whole story. Because, of course, there’s the journey back each day, where - until I can manage to wangle a charging point at work - the car is lugging a very big, very flat EV battery all the way home. I was hoping to see an indicated 70-75mpg for these journeys, as that’s what I used to get in my Gen3. The new setup is obviously more efficient than the Gen3, but I figured the extra dead weight would pull it back down. I figured wrong. Day 1, that 0.1 mile of charge disappeared pulling out of the work car park, meaning the whole journey was done in HV mode. I was gobsmacked to arrive home with 92mpg showing on the meter, although I’d been slowed down for a portion of the journey by a tractor so figured this wasn’t representative. Day 2, dragging the flat battery all the way and without the benefit of a slow tractor, netted me 85mpg. Day 3, with the roads having dried out since the morning, I was up to 87mpg Day 4, it was still a bit colder and I managed 83mpg Day 5, it was warmer and I had a bit of EV range to get me going, so I hit 94mpg. Since then, I’ve never been below 80mpg even when starting with absolutely zero EV range and I’ve been back over 90 a few times with a best run home of 97mpg. That is seriously impressive to me, and indicates just how brilliant the standard non-PHV Gen4 hybrid setup really must be. A quick flick through the info screens soon reveals the reason for such petrol parsimony. I’m hitting well over 50% - often over 60% - of engine-off running on the journey home. The slice of the battery that works like a standard hybrid is far stronger than any other hybrid I’ve driven, not least for its ability to let me cruise for extended periods at 50mph with the engine off. And when the engine does run, the fiendishly clever algorithm that determines power routing manages to harvest charge by using ‘excess’ petrol power even when not on re-gen. Sometimes it manages to grab enough to bring the EV range meter back into play, allowing me to switch to full EV mode for short distances despite starting with ‘nothing in the tank’. I’ve always guesstimated around 30% of engine-off running on that route in my other hybrids, so to be hitting double that is a pretty amazing achievement for this car. 🙉 Infernal Indicator Clicks Of course, no car is perfect and the PHV has its fair share of irritations. Not least, the appalling noise that issues forth every time the indicator stalk is used. Why, Toyota, why? If the C-HR – and, by all accounts, the standard Gen4 – can have an inoffensively-soft click then what on earth possessed you to equip the PHV with a squeaky, tinny clicker that actually manages to approximate a fingernail/blackboard interface? I’ve got a Carista dongle on the way, so I’ll see if lowering the volume makes it more tolerable, and failing that I’ll just silence it completely. For the time being, I’m tempted to go full-Audi and just not signal at all. It really is that bad. 🤬 Un-Turn-Offable Auto Headlights I realise I’m preaching to the converted here (well, @PeteB anyway) but seriously, how can it possibly be acceptable to have removed the ‘Off’ switch for the headlights when the Auto setting is so goddamn dangerous? The first thing I did was set the sensitivity to its lowest, yet they still go on at the slightest hint of shadow. I actually clocked up over twenty unnecessary activations the other day before I gave up and stopped counting. As twilight fell, I had to pull right back from the van in front, as I could see him looking in the mirror wondering what my game was. Last Friday, on a narrow lane, the car in front stopped in a shadowy dip to wait for some fighting pigeons to get out of the way. I wasn’t in a hurry, and completely understood why he had stopped. Nobody wants a fat wood pigeon in their grille and when the birds are scrapping they often just won’t move for you. However, the dim light triggered my stupid auto lights, so the chap got upset and gestured back angrily because he thought I was being impatient. Fortunately, he wasn’t a violent psycho, but I struggled to find the right sign language for ‘sorry, it’s not me, it’s the car’. And then, of course, there was my daily roundabout-with-a-flyover, where the inevitable happened: the lights came on under the flyover and the person waiting at the entrance thought I was flashing them to pull out. I was already braking at this point, because I knew full well what was going to happen, but it was still an unnecessary danger. Seriously, auto headlights are an absolute liability. To make them impossible to disable is madness. I don’t want to run sidelights all the time, because that dims the DRLs, which are a useful safety feature in the land of partially-sighted pensioners where I live. And I’d really rather not run on dipped headlights all the time either, as that’s just wasting energy when it’s not dark. I wonder if Carista can access an even-less-sensitive setting than the paltry -2 the car presently allows? 😢 Economy-Class Seating Okay, so I am coming from 18-way semi-aniline heated/ventilated luxury, and anything is going to be a bit of a comedown from that but still… it really hurts that the Prius Prime in the US gets proper electrical adjustability whilst here I am having to crank myself up and down and back and forth manually like a prole. A bit more padding wouldn’t go amiss, either. 💩 Archaic Infotainment This goes without saying, really. I’m not disappointed with it because I knew it was going to be bad, but it’s such a simple thing to get right that it’s depressing to see Toyota (along with so many other manufacturers to be fair) fail so hard. I mean, Mirrorlink? Really? That’s all you’re giving me in a car released in 2017? And just to rub it in that I can’t use my phone’s screen, you’re making me use an interface that looks like something from the days of Windows 7? You. Can. Do. Better. The sat nav actually gave me some hope, at first. Unlike my GS with its offensively-basic 1990s-style map display, the Toyota map at least looks vaguely modern. It can connect to the internet via my phone, to get those all-important live traffic updates. And it’s evidently been updated fairly recently, as all the shoddy new-build estates that are popping up like fungus on my route to work seem to be accounted for. Could this finally be an in-car nav system that’s worth using? Of course, not. Because then, you actually try to use the damn thing and it all falls apart. Primarily, because some cheapskate bean-counter in Aichi specced a wholly-inadequate CPU to power the whole thing. It’s impossibly slow to route, laggy to use and despite that internet connection it has so far managed to provide 100% inaccurate traffic info. All reported delays have failed to materialise, it insisted that a road was completely shut last week when it clearly wasn’t and it’s failed to give any warning of the delays which did actually occur. Still, in brighter news, the wireless charging mat nearly works, which means I don’t have to pull the surprisingly un-rattly trim apart to route a charging cable to a phone holder. That means I can run TomTom on my phone sitting on the mat, and occasionally glance down for proper accurate traffic info. I say nearly works, because it can’t supply enough charge to stop the battery from slowly draining when running TomTom, but to be fair that’s more to do with TomTom being a CPU hog than any real fault with Toyota. And, whilst the interface for music playing is predictably clunky, when it’s cranked up the JBL setup genuinely sounds terrific. I have tinnitus and hearing loss so I’m hardly operating at audiophile level, but I couldn’t honestly say the fancy Mark Levinson system in my GS sounds any better. 😁 Conclusion All in all, I am seriously impressed with this car. However, I can see why Toyota haven’t sold many. It’s a very niche market: an odd-looking four-seater with no spare wheel, a tiny boot and an unattractive price. Add in the general public’s completely irrational but depressingly common fear of any car that plugs in to a power socket, and you can see why used PHVs lose value far more rapidly than the standard hybrid. I am under no illusions: the PHV makes no financial sense. The money I’ll save in fuel will be far less than the extra I’ll lose in depreciation compared to the standard Gen4. I didn’t even manage to bag a free-tax one either. However, I’m finding it hard to care about that. For me there is a perverse joy to be gained in perambulating around the countryside whilst using no fuel, that outweighs such pecuniary concerns. I’ve also already enjoyed getting into a pre-heated car in the morning, and that joy will only grow in the winter months. The adaptive headlights – once it’s dark and they’ve stopped flapping around switching on and off – are actually incredibly effective, and even better than the steerable HIDs of the Lexus. Besides, to be honest, even if it didn’t have any of those extras, I’d still have got one over the standard Gen4. Because I’m vainly juvenile at heart, and I’m easily seduced by surface beauty. And any which way you play it, a carbon fibre bootlid is properly f-----g cool.
  16. 4 points
    Car air conditioning never ceases to amuse. Refrigeration technicians are highly,trained, skilled, knowledgeable and qualified. Qualifications are gained over a period of approximately 3 years minimum. Knowledge takes a while longer to accumulate. Garages in the most part, cant afford to employ air conditioning technicians. So to put it simply, why don't you ask the bloke next door if he wouldnt mind asking his youngest to wipe a cloth over the vents and give the ac a once over? Change the pollen filter, clean out the vents, run the unit on recirc only for the shortest possible periods and once or twice a year scald the entire system with air which is hotter than 60 degrees for about 15 minutes. EASY to do on a hot summers day with the ac turned onto maximum heat medium fan speed on a long run during which the engine is at its full working temperature. (Motorways are good for this.)Dont forget to wind the windows down so that the heat escapes and the system carries on trying to throw heat through the ductwork and coils. You then ensure that you kill the bacteria which makes everything stink. Keep the drain clean and clear, blow out the coil and kill bacteria by temperature and not disinfectant. Adding, topping up or routinely replacing refrigerant isnt necessary. Changing refrigerant is only necessary when there has been a leak. All refrigerant leaks have to be degassed, repaired and proven prior to reintroducing refrigerant. Most refrigerant leaks are very hard to detect. They do sell dyes which glow under an ultraviolet lamp however, what they don't tell you is that these dyes will only work if the leak is big enough to let the ultraviolet sensitive element of the dye to escape ; in many cases the molecular size of the escaping gas component is smaller than the dye molecule size and so the gas escapes whilst the dye doesn't. It makes everyone think that the problem went away until the ac stops cooling again. And guess what! you didn't just pay a semiskilled, barely trained, charlatan £165 to be fed a line or two. Recent developments show the motor industry trying to protect its own by introducing "special" refrigerants so that you have to entrust your vehicle to someone who just got back from a fortnights course. Sorry to say, this doesn't make them right ; a properly trained refrigeration technician knows how to handle and is qualified to manage any type of refrigerant from propane to carbon dioxide to ammonia ( I kid you not) and many , many more. A lot of people refer to air conditioning as "air con" some of them think they are being a bit savvy, Nicholas Cage fans and err ...cool. However I think that they are unwittingly being extremely accurate; a lot of the air conditioning trade is "air CON"
  17. 3 points
    Collected last night, all seems good. Enjoyed using the adaptive cruise on the M25 !
  18. 3 points
    Every time you turn the car off the odometer is displayed on the MFD screen. It's not difficult to work out when the next service is due, by just looking at the odometer each time you turn off the car, when it's a 10,000 mile interval is it. 🙄
  19. 3 points
    Well, today I did my first fill since filling on the day I got the car. I try to brim the tank each time, but it won't be reasonably reliable until I've done at least 5 or 6 - still, gives an idea compared to the car's computer's 'guess'! 514 Miles since last fill 45.74 Litres ((10.06 Imperial Gallons) £56.67 (123.9p/Litre = £5.63/Gallon) at Tesco 51.09 mpg (calculated) 52.0 mpg car display [= 42.54 miles per US Gallon, 5.531 L/100km, 18.08 km/L] mpg error car Vs tank calculation: car over estimated by 1.78% 11.03 p/mile Fuel gauge showed 10% remaining, 39 miles to empty (if tank really holds 12.1 Imperial Gallons and I really brimmed it - calculated 104 miles remaining) My daily mpg figures have compared favourably to my figures on the 2WD demo car, a pleasant surprise. The fact that the rear electric motor appears to help with regeneration probably helps a little.
  20. 3 points
    The charging 'infrastructure' is a disgraceful mess. I'd nationalise it, but then I'd nationalise all our major infrastructure because I'm a bit of an old lefty on that particular issue. That said, it won't be a significant barrier to increased uptake now that the latest EV ranges are 250+ miles. Combined with home charging, that will negate the need for public charging in all but the most exceptional of circumstances for most people. Although we then hit the next problem - battery shortages - which currently makes it pretty impossible to actually buy one of those latest EVs unless you're prepared to wait months or years for delivery. Or it will finally drive the investment we should have made in renewable generation over the last two decades, but in typical British short-termist fashion have failed to do so. Wishful thinking, I know - regular rolling blackouts are probably more our style! Hydrogen doesn't look like the answer either, as that currently needs a whole ton of electricity to obtain and requires yet more investment in distribution infrastructure. All of which leads to Joe's sensible conclusion that hybrids are the best compromise at the moment, and will continue to be for many years to come.
  21. 3 points
    Hybrid is the best compromise at the moment. Just spent a week on holiday in and around Gloucester, didnt see one charging point. Good job I wasnt 100% electric, I was happy using little fuel yet going lots of miles on hybrid.
  22. 3 points
    I looked at the Corolla but it was way too small inside. Rear leg room was poor as was the boot and the cabin felt narrow and very closed in. If you want more legroom room you will need to get the saloon or tourer as they have a longer wheelbase. The quality of materials was great, but I will be keeping my Prius for a very long time..... I love it!
  23. 3 points
    Today had a pleasent result. For the last year or more car has not been as smooth as when first bought 18 short years ago. Poor start up/ warm up tick over and when warmed up normal tickover oscillating between 700rpm to shudder low revs to pickup again. Yesterday engine warning light on so had to bite the bullet and sort the fault. Long story short, the original vacuum link from MAP sensor to manifold (yes MAP sensor) looked fine till I disconnnected it and found extreme fatigue failure cracks and also slack fit to the device spiggot. New pipe ty wrapped on superb smooth running motor. I had couple of weeks before checked and cleaned most of the snap on electrical connectors just in case corrosion effects. Non present. Cost of fix absolutely nowt, the perfect price. I am now content to drive through heavy traffic again. Best of luck one happy Fixitphil
  24. 3 points
    I like the white bits looks good to me.
  25. 3 points
    The incentives for electric cars remain - albeit reduced. Then again one has to question whether vehicle manufacturers adopted high prices for electric cars to take advantage of the subsidy.
  26. 3 points
    IF the cat is the problem, you could leave your Prius parked in one of those areas where the tealeafs jack the car up and cut out the cat. (they dont know its faulty) and you could claim for a new one on insurance. Just expressing my thoughts in type. 🤔
  27. 3 points
    probably just as well. The 2 manuals for my Prius come to just over 1,000 pages. If there was a printed copy in the car it would probably knock another 1-2 mpg off!
  28. 3 points
  29. 3 points
  30. 3 points
    Hi, Your garage should not have made you a quotation or told you 'to keep an eye on it'. On my mk1 Aygo, the water pump started to leak very early. One day, I brought my car for regular servicing and I was asked to schedule a day rapidly to have the water pump changed. It was replaced under warranty. Your situation is usual with car dealerships. As long as the car is under warranty, there is nothing to worry about, it can wait. And as soon as the warranty has expired, everything needs replacing urgently 😄
  31. 3 points
    The displayed range after a full charge is not directly proportional to your battery capacity, it is based on previous journeys and other data. Your efficiency will be down during winter due to lower ambient temperatures. The battery will generate heat while charging, but that's not enough. Li-ion batteries like operating temperatures closer to 20 degrees.
  32. 3 points
    Some people either don't have the time, inclination or the facilities to undertake their own servicing - nothing to do with not having technical knowledge, which is a wildly inaccurate assumption. Yes, one can have servicing done by independents during the new car warranty period, but the onus is then on the owner to prove the servicing has been carried out to the manufacturer's requirements in the event of a warranty claim which correct servicing has a bearing on. Those who have a manufacturer's extended warranty, often find that to keep the warranty valid, the vehicle has to be serviced within the manufacturer's dealer network - certainly the case with Toyota. Also some manufacturers offer reduced cost servicing for out of warranty vehicles, which is also the case with Toyota. Toyota's Essential Care scheme offers the equivalent of an Intermediate service (silver service) from £99 and the equivalent of a Full service (gold service) from £180, depending on model. There is also a current offer of a silver service and MOT for £99. Worth bearing in mind that if one has a major issue with an out of warranty vehicle for which the manufacturer is approached as regards a goodwill contribution towards the cost of repairs, independent or self servicing will usually mean that goodwill is denied. Goodwill works both ways. Yes, some franchised dealers are better than others, and the same applies to independents. At the end of the day, whether one chooses to have one's vehicle serviced by either a franchised dealer, an independent or to do one's own servicing, it is down to personal circumstances and personal choice. Nothing else!
  33. 3 points
    As much as i love the 3 Toyota Hybrids I have owned (1xAuris Hybrid, 1xGen3 Prius and 1xGen4 Prius) and find they suit my needs very adequately, I think a Prius would not be for you and your needs, and although not owned or even been in a Prius Plus, I have doubts that would too. The Hybrids are good on fuel consumption, the Auris is doing 60+mpg in the summer, the Gen3 I had was doing 66mpg in the summer, and now the Gen4 is doing 75+mpg in the summer. They all drop about 10mpg in the winter months - car engine runs more in the cold weather. I find all 3 comfortable, the Gen4 the most comfortable. If it was just a family of 2 adults plus 3 kids, the Auris would be just ok, the Prius perhaps more so. The Prius plus, giving 7 seats would be better for your family needs, but you do take a hit on mpg (the standard Prius design is more aerodynamic). Its the carrying potentially 4 adults plus 3 kids that will rule the "standard" cars out. And when you talk of carrying 5 bikes plus 5 passengers your mpg will drop dramatically. Physically the Prius Plus is the one more suited to you but you would have to make a very careful decision, and not just done on a test drive (which you would probably love). I dont know what your budget is for this "new" to you car is, but I think you need to look at MPV still. Could you keep what you have got (or even purchase a newer MPV), for the bikes/extended family and buy a used Nissan Leaf mark1 all electric vehicle for doing your local runs to school, shops etc. Mark 1 Leaf should do about 140 miles in the summer and 80-90 miles in the winter on a charge - thats a 5 day week running about covered before a charge overnight. Just my thoughts, though I will have to go and wash my mouth out after talking about Leaf electric vehicles.
  34. 3 points
    Always remember, the alternative to a Hybrid car is either an ICE or EV. Downside of ICE is pollution, which is main reason getting away from ICE. Downside of EV is low mileage travel between charges, main reason I kept away from an EV within my budget. An Hybrid is a compromise. It is self charging, so no need to worry where nearest charge points are, it has an engine to keep me going in all situations except running out of fuel - and I would only do that if I was stupid, it gives good mpg and less pollution of the atmosphere due to running on petrol less. On that last point, my on board computer shows I running on battery in the summer 57% of the time,and in winter 43% of the time. Battery technology is getting better all the time, smaller, lighter, more powerful. Until the lower priced EV can do 300 miles on a single charge,and can be “refilled” to the top within 20-30 minutes, and charging stations are more common, personally I think an Hybrid is brilliant. Until then, life is a compromise, and Toyota, IMO, has got it right in bringing to the market now for 20 years Hybrid vehicles. You can be sure though they will have EV’s being developed and tested right now, but what’s the point on bringing out a Leaf or Zoe that can only do 100 or so miles between charges (first editions). And what cost and how frequent is a battery replacement that’s being used all the time.? I don’t know about the Yaris Hybrid, but the my Prius and the Wife’s Auris hybrids have a 10 year HV battery warranty so long as they are checked annually (free as part of a service, £40 otherwise). My Prius Gen4 was doing just over 80mpg summer and just over 70mpg winter. And I can drive past urban schools with playground full of kids knowing full well most times I can be running on battery, so less pollution then petrol/diesel. I have watched a lot of YouTube videos on how to drive a hybrid car to get full advantage of high mpg. I had to make changes as to how I drove, but always making sure I don’t hinder or road users. I read recently someone in a Toyota hybrid saying it’s painfully slow trying to get from traffic lights stop to 30mph in a reasonable time, using battery, without annoying others. I don’t even try. Sure, I use the battery to get the 1.5 ton car moving (thus save a lot of money) but once moving I use the petrol engine to get me up to a reasonable speed in a reasonable time - you can’t run forever on battery 1) it’s not got the power to accelerate quickly, 2) I am mindful the system is self charging and so accept there are times it needs to run on petrol. I choose the times to my advantage when I can. Battery cars seem to be the future, maybe hydrogen cars will rule (and Toyota market an hydrogen car), but until the day batteries have a good capacity, taking up less space, weigh less, are cheaper, can be charged quicker and more fill up places, Hybrid is the way to go.
  35. 3 points
    I think they have spoilt the look, I love my rear Z lights, not too keen on what they have done to the front either. Its lost some of its individuality 😕
  36. 3 points
    Got my 2016 Yaris Icon Hybrid last July and since then my MPG has varied between 62 summer and 52 winter. I do a lot of short trips around town and the occasional long trip involving motorway driving. I find the type of journey has little impact on consumption, temperature has the largest effect. MPG started to drop below 60 in November and is now steady at 52. I always calculate MPG from full tank to full tank though I find the trip computer in the car to be fairly accurate to within 1-2 MPG. My previous Hyundai i20 Auto only managed 30-40 mpg and was useless on short trips. The Yaris is a much nicer to drive as well.
  37. 3 points
    Never ever have to demist the windows. Never ever had to with the past two cars either due to having aircon. Leave it on permanently, never turn it off, and it will dry out the car internally and the windows never mist up. Mick.
  38. 3 points
    Toyota's electronics manage the battery charging to maximise life. When we see it as 'full' it really isn't. Similarly, it is never allowed to get near being properly 'empty' even when the battery graphic says it is. There is therefore no need to do any battery 'management' yourself, nor any need to worry about charging it fully and driving til it is empty. I'm surprised to hear Tesla doesn't have a similar system in place. That said, even with automatic management, the PHV battery will degrade slowly over time. I think there's something in the manual which suggests this is likely to manifest as reduced range, but not reduced performance. However, at what point any such range reduction will become noticeable above the daily impact on range of temperature and road conditions, is uncertain. The cars are all too new to have any meaningful data on this.
  39. 3 points
    update its now January 2019 and the battery light still remains on for a while and the car haven't failed me once what a fantastic little car I would recommend it to anyone .
  40. 3 points
  41. 3 points
    Not a Hybrid but a Mk1 T-Sport running Mk2 alloys with full blown winter tyres - Continental Winter Contact TS 860's. I commute to Sheffield 3 days a week via the Snake Pass and believe you and me, that road gets battered with snow & ice to the extent that it ends up being closed for 2-3 days at a time at many points over the winter. Last winter I crossed the pass safely many times when other cars were turning around or sliding all over the road due to the sheer amount of grip that these tyres provide - like the brown stuff to a blanket 😉 I put my winter tyres on last weekend after the 1st dump of snow over the Snake pass last week & they will probably stay on until the end of March as they did last year. Had I not lived so close to the Peaks where there is always a lot of snow every winter then I probably wouldn't have bothered with winter tyres.
  42. 3 points
    Yes Alternator, I meant to say "like an alternator would", nevermind! I took the car into the dealers for their quick look and between several hours and several discussions with the mechanic, they haven't got a clue. I do not recommend lunch of tea and biscuits! They provide sandwiches at the Lexus garage. Ah you have left the lights on. No! Ah the dash cam is draining the battery. No the usb turns off with the ignition. I ran it for two years in the Prius gen4. Ah this is a different car. It still turns off. I don't think.so. I checked. No it has residual voltage on it still. No I checked with a voltmeter. It doesn't charge with the mains charger. Yes it does I have checked. When you ran the aircon/heater it drains the battery in the morning, the charger turns off when it's fully charged. No the mains charger turns back on when you do that, and charges the 12v battery as well. I'll check current leakage. Fine. There is 500mA drain on the battery. That does not explain how it was completely flat overnight, I have left interior lights on overnight on other cars without adverse effects. Must be a faulty battery. What about the 500mA drain. We are replacing the battery, next week fine? If I must. While we are at it. The Phone charger does not work. Ah you need a special phone for that. Yes I have one. Ah what model though.Just listen it does not work, it will not turn on. Please don't hit your head against the wall. LOOK the phone worked fine in the last car. Ah we will have a look. Further installments next week., if I'm not had up for GBH!
  43. 3 points
    Driving the other day, there was a distinct rattle jiggle knocking from the rear RH side. Noticeable going over bumps and road unevenness. I was worried about a suspension linkage and was considering taking the car to our local independent garage for them to take a look on the rack. Yesterday, I washed the car, and when hosing it down, and as usual I hosed out the rear wheel arches, especially the "mud trap" forward of the rear wheels. I then found the source of the rattle jiggle knocking. It was a piece of rough stone about the size of a marble or a Malteser! 🤣 Just thought I'd share this with the Yaris community, as maybe someone else may have the issue. Mick.
  44. 3 points
    Purchased today. Has some typical "Yaris tailgate / reversing camera corrossion" which will be fixed and repainted under warranty. Other than that, should make for a great little car for her. Thanks. Another (Japanese) joins the club that is Toyota motoring.
  45. 3 points
    Toyota have far from lost sight of the future, they are at the forefront of technology, just not what everyone else is doing. The Toyota mantra for some 20 odd years has been to produce cars with zero emissions, but at that time, the only way forward was Hybrid for which they are now mainstream. I was lucky enough to talk to the UK chap in charge of the Mirai Hydrogen project, what an exciting future that is. Imagine being a fuel station owner now, having to buy your fuel from a refinery and paying the going rate. Roll on a few years (available now but not mainstream) and you will find your local petrol station making their own Hydrogen on site. Not tied to any fuel manufacturer, making your own fuel from electricity and water, now that truly is the future, and it's not far away either, all we need is the vehicles to be built at much lower costs, the fuel stations are coming, more and more added each year. When we have cars buses and lorries on Hydrogen it will take off massively, the only trouble then is taxation, there is currently no tax on zero emissions, imagine what will happen when zero emission vehicles become the mainstream?
  46. 3 points
    If you have bought a brand new battery then I would definitely fit it in place of what you have. Otherwise it will just deteriorate. One dead easy check you could do on the old battery would be a simple discharge test for a few minutes. If you measure the voltage on the resting battery (after it has stood for a few hours) you should see at least 12.3 volts. Now turn on your headlights and heated rear screen without the engine running. That will draw around 30 amps. A new and fully charged battery would support that for at least a couple of hours and it should not fall below 12 volts in the first hour. For your old battery its just a quick check on seeing whether the voltage holds up over say 10 minutes under those conditions. If the voltage starts falling quickly then the battery is faulty and not holding sufficient charge. When you start the car from cold you should see the voltage across the battery rise to perhaps as high as 15 volts (or even slightly more under extreme cold conditions) and then see it fall back a little. When the engine (alternator) is really hot then the voltage could be as low as 13.5.
  47. 3 points
    The Gen4 improvements in efficiency do look to be genuinely impressive in the real world, regardless of whatever the WLTP or NEDC might say. Although I'll be sorry to see the NEDC measurements go - I found part of the fun of owning a car like the Prius was the challenge of trying to match those artificial mpg numbers!
  48. 3 points
    I bought a set of these polishing foam disks for about a fiver that I could connect to my cordless drill and just used some cutting compound. I'd tried two different headlight polishing kits before this method, the polishing kits took a significant amount of elbow grease and yielded poor results compared to the ease and finish the drill attachment gave.
  49. 3 points
    The 700W number is interesting. My commute home is 15 miles and takes about 30 minutes. I typically get 65mpg to 72mpg in moderate weather. There is 9.6 kWh per litre of petrol. 65 mpg is 1/65 = 0.0154 gallon per mile 1/65 / 0.22 = 0.0699 litres per mile 1/65 / 0.22 * 9.6 = 0.6713 kWh per mile 15 mile trip uses 15 * 0.6713 = 10.0695 kWh 30 minutes of AC at 700W = 0.35 kWh Petrol to electric efficiency is probably about 1/3 so approximately 1kWh for AC. This is approximately a 10% decrease in efficiency and 65 mpg goes down to 58.5 mpg if the AC is on fully. This is consistent with what I see in really hot weather.
  50. 3 points
    I would like to share my experience with you guys. I have recently bought a 2011 Avensis tourer 2.0 d4d to use as a taxi. it came with privacy/tinted glass from factory. the council does not allow this for passenger safety. I sourced some windows from a breakers yard from a 2012 model. 2012 is the facelift model. so the glass is the same in the preface lift and face lift model. the rear quarter(boot) and tailgate glass had to be removed professionally as its bonded. I used the same guy who the breakers yard used to save on labour costs. the door glass I changed at home with the removal of the door card. I am now left with privacy glass if anyone is interested in purchasing please get in touch, i will attach before and after photos. I would like to say thank you to Konrad for the moral support and help.


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