Phill111

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About Phill111

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  • First Name
    Phill
  • Gender*
    Male
  • Toyota Model
    Prius+
  • Toyota Year
    2015
  • Location
    Hertfordshire

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  1. Phill111

    2017 vs 2019

    I had 2 Prius+ over the years and I agreed about the side sound insulation. Shame Toyota seem to put so much into the Prius and neglect the other models to some extent. Take my 2017 RAV4 for instance, simple things like all auto electric windows are missing. I also find it disappointing that certain features the rest of the world get are missing from the UK models. That aside, after taking test drives of a few cars from various brands, I have ordered a new RAV4 Excel. Not got a delivery date yet, hopefully before the end of the year,
  2. I think we will see this sort of thing a lot in the future. As more apps end up in cars, more third party tools will be used. I am sure that will be a minefield to wade through in the future. Can you image if we end up with a Huawei situation and all of a sudden the OS in our cars is affected.
  3. Phill111

    2017 vs 2019

    Mine was the 4WD model. Not saying the hesitation is bad by any means, it is far better than any of those silly over turbo'd little diesels such as in the Renault Kadjar and similar. I just felt there was a little more lag on the new model compared to the old. However, once the power kicks in on the 2019 model, it is noticeably more. In the Prius+ the same two glove box layout was present, as you say an ipad fitted fine. I had a hire car a few weeks ago, cannot remember which model, that had an iPad slot in the armrest pocket. That was excellent. As for the wireless phone charging, that is a shame. I wonder why that decision was mad not to include it here. Probably decided by the same bean counter that decided we wouldn't get the video rear view mirror. Not bothered about that too much. Hopefully we will get Apple car play some time in the future. One other thing, the rear view camera has noticeably more distortion than the old model. I know it has two modes and the really wide one the distortion is understandable. The normal mode it is still quite distorted in a non linear way at the edges. I am sure I will get used to that in time, I just felt it was slightly less useful for parking in tight spaces. One neat idea I saw on a Kia Nero recently was a little solenoid on the rear view camera that wiped the lens each time you put the car in reverse. Would love to see other brands do similar. At the moment I have got into the habit of wiping it with my thumb every time I open the boot.
  4. Phill111

    2017 vs 2019

    For the last couple of years I have been driving a Hybrid Excel. On the whole it is very good although a few things are frustrating. It is renewal time as it is a company car. While I can have many models from most brands, the Toyota Hybrids are very well priced for what you get, good dealer support and I like hybrids at least until we are allowed to go fully EV. So the first thing I find annoying about the new range is the leather. I don't want to go top of the line as it is a little more but in my opinion you get less. For instance, the top model looses the seat memory function, the heated steering wheel and with more sprayed areas such as wheel arches I would guess would be more prone to supermarket scuffs. The top model does however come with synthetic leather rather than real leather. I prefer the synthetic TBH. Given the rise in the number of vegan and veggies in the UK and the fact it spears to cost less I would have thought Toyota would have given it as an option in the Excel grade. However in that grade you have to go full cow skin, unlike previous years and unlike the Prius + I also owned. A few days ago a demo vehicle arrived in the Excel grade. First impressions are good. The boot is certainly bigger thanks to the improved battery layout. The car feels like it was designed to be a hybrid rather than a bit of an after thought. The build quality also feels much better. It is certainly more refined and has less little creaks and rattles. While it does feel more powerful I did feel that the throttle response is slightly more hesitant than the older model. The new one has more of the feel of a turbo spinning up than the instant EV response I have become used to. More very little then shed loads of oompf. Handling wise the new model also feels better. Inside it is nice to finally have electric folding mirrors that fold when the car is locked, not just when a button is pressed. I always thought Toyota were daft to not have that in the past. A tiny upgrade that probably costs pennies, but one that makes folding mirrors more useful. Next is the inclusion of all four windows being one touch. Again, sounds minor but I got used to having that on my previous Toyotas, all 4 of therm. The cup holders on the new model are IMO not as good. The centre console is very high now, so the two cup holders are not only less versatile, if you put bottles in them they wobble about and hinder access to the gear stick. I also find the shape of that high centre console rubs on the side of my knee, just along the seam of my trousers. I am sure I will get used to that though. Next is the glove box, the old model had a nice large one, the new much smaller. The shelf above is however more useful. In the arm rest on the old rav4 there was a two compartment system, a small one at the top and a larger space below. The now model has replaced that with a single large cavity with a small tray that slots in place at the top. I prefer the old style but not too fussed. What I would like to see however, and is something many brands consciously design for, is either the glove box or preferably the arm rest space actually fit an iPad or similar table. I often carry one and it would be useful to have it on hand rather than in the boot. Behind the front seats Toyota have decided to fit just the one pocket instead of two as per the previous model and all those before. Bit tight of Toyota if you ask me, especially on a £38k car. Rear legroom is excellent. The seat belt for the centre occupant is a big improvement no longer being ceiling mounted and crossing over one of the passenger anchor points. The angle adjustment is not an improvement. I found it a bit more fiddly than the old leaver by the side of the seat system on the old model. The new one only has teenager slouch or full upright positions and these are set using the same handle at the top used to fold the seats. On the plus side gone is the need to fiddle with those silly flaps from the tonneau cover. I also wish Toyota would use a system similar to the CX5 where the cover stays attached to the tailgate when you open it, much easier. That is a minor niggle. Onto the safety stuff, all is improved. The cross traffic monitoring is excellent as is the blind spot monitoring. The radar cruise is excellent and improved over the old model. I am not a fan of lane keep assist, just doesn't feel quite right. The only area that could use improvement is the auto high beam, especially its detection of cars coming from side turnings and its detection of pedestrians. Mazda have a far better system in this area, not just with detection but with the way it works. On those the adjustment on high bean is more active, using shutters to direct light. This is handy on unlit dual carriageways where the high beam stays on but directs its light away from oncoming traffic while still illuminating the nearside nicely. Ergonomics I feel has taken a little step backward in both the infotainment and the steering wheel controls. Toyota have removed the little stalk that was used to control the cruise control. This has meant cramming more buttons on the steering wheel. As a result they are smaller and less well configured, definitely less intuitive. I find myself having to glance down to find certain buttons. The infotainment is a bit of a disappointment. Buggy is my first thought. Take the home screen for example, why? It is just cack and not configurable. For some reason the map on that page will sometimes pop up in 2d, occasionally in 3d no matter what settings are used for the map. Go to the actual map page and those settings are applies, but not on the home page. Now that would not be too much of a problem if Toyota had left an option for the car to not default to that page every time it is switched on. If I turned the car off in the map screen or the media screen then I want it to stay there, not default to the useless home screen. Hopefully Toyota will fix that in a future update. Hopefully they will add Apple car play here in the UK too like the rest of the world seem to have. The POI search is also terrible finding nothing I asked it to. Up until earlier this year we had Google POI search but Toyota decided to remove that feature not just from new models, but existing users too. So now I have to pull over and look up places in my phone to find a postcode or full address. A once excellent feature removed. Also on the map page you can no longer zoom into a level of your choosing, auto always takes over. The system is faster however, so hopefully those bugs and UI issues will be ironed out in the future. Of note though the buttons and controls have all been moved around. Especially annoying is the volume control moving to the far side meaning quite a stretch to turn it down in a hurry. I wish all manufacturers would put more effort into ergonomics of the cockpit. Comparing to the camera world, Canon get ergonomics right, make small changes to design so the feel and button positions to make transition easy. Sony on the other hand slap in loads of features but have a terrible habit of re-writing everything for each model so you cannot find those features. Toyota seem to lean towards the Sony camera design ethic. Overall though, the new Excel is excellent. MPG is noticeable better, the new dash is excellent and comfort is top notch. Inside is generally a nice place to be with plenty of space for all. I will order one with the JBL/Panoramic camera pack. I wonder if that comes with wireless phone charging, the demo car didn't but I know it exists in other regions. I will also not order the skyview roof as that deletes the spare tyre. I feel uncomfortable about not having one, at least Toyota still give you the option.
  5. Sure, either way is has really reduced the effectiveness of an already lagging behind sat nav system. Google have always charged for commercial use which is what Toyota would have been. It seems very poor to then reduce the service to customers. It may seem minor, but t those of us that used it regularly it is a disappointment. I can see this sort of thing happening more. Features of cars, part of the sales brochures that help sell a car, being taken away later on.
  6. I did contact Toyota and the “it is not used enough so we decided to remove it” comment was from them. I would guess there were costs involved as the search probably went vita Toyotas servers. So it is probably simply a cost saving exercise.
  7. Let’s face it, Toyotas sat nav touch2 system is lagging behind its competitors in many ways. One thing that until recently was a bit of a shining light was the Google POI search. It could find anything. I used it almost every day. It could find companies to almost any poi that the standard search could not. That was up until a couple of months ago when Toyota dropped the feature. Why? Why did they make such a daft decision? Well apparently not enough people were using it. So instead we have Tom Tom places which really is about as much use as a chocolate teapot. Yesterday I tried searching for RSPB Minsmere, something Google search had no problems with. POI search has not idea, neither does tomtom places. So far in all my attempts at using it, it has found nothing I have asked for, not one thing. I end up having to look up places on my phone then manually enter the address in the sat nav. if as Toyota inform me the feature was not used enough I might suggest this was down to it being a bit hidden in the UI. A few tweaks to the UI would have seen it utilised a lot more. Making it the default POI search if an internet connection existed would I am sure made it very well used. Now we are left with a frankly terrible search option. I am about to replace my Rav4 2017 Hybrid with something new. Had the new 2019 included google search, or Apple car play then I might have put it top of my list, but at the moment such a seemingly simple thing is putting me off. I visit lots of places each week and having to waste time researching addresses is frustrating, more so knowing that just a few weeks ago it was such a simple exercise.
  8. What will be interesting is to see what comes out of the tech share between Toyota and Mazda in a couple of years.
  9. Just ordered the RAV4 today. Spoke to the dealer who sent me all the current specs etc. Reading those the current Hybrid version of the 2.5 which I will be receiving has a thermal efficiency of 38.5% (quite a bit better than the 33 stated above) and apparently they will soon be updated to the new dynamic force engine with a 41% thermal efficiency, very impressive for a petrol engine.
  10. Just for clarification, while the plug in can run in pure EV up to those speeds, above it, and like all the hybrids, the motors still assist the main engine when you accelerate right up to the top speed of the car. So you do get the power right through. The rules in Britain are a bit odd. Petrol will still exist under the current ill thought changes. To be classed as an EV the car must do a certain distance on EV. They will still be able to be a hybrid after that, or have a range extender. I am guessing though that by 2040 most companies will have moved in a different direction.
  11. I just needed to be sure before I responded to this point. Even at high speed, when you put your foot down the electric motors kick in to assist. I thought it was the case as I have seen it many times on my Prius+, and the one I had before. I checked on the motorway today, and I can clearly see it cut in. I also confirmed this is the case from Toyota directly. So the HP is available if you need it to for instance, overtake. It does not run all the time as it would drain the batteries. The Toyota hybrid system is a lot more subtle than simply on or off. For instance, on the motorway today, even at 70mph, there were times when the ICE was totally off, such as on slight declines of slowing down for traffic. There were times when the motors were helping the engine, times when the engine was off and the momentum or braking was charging the batteries. It is not the system many seem to think is it. This is more down to the gearbox than the available power. Really, top speed is a non issue. I used to have a very fast car, never pushed it hard hence still having a clean licence despite clocking 40+k per year for nearly 20 years.
  12. Thermal efficiency is not everything, nor is top speed. However, even at 70mph, the hybrid system still emits less NOx than the diesel, by a big margin. For most of us, the emissions at the exhaust are what counts and petrol has a big advantage over diesel. The whole hybrid thing really is a stop gap until either full EV or Hydrogen EV or even something new comes along. Diesel is dead, and no amount of defending it will change that. We know that a number of EU countries including here in the UK are going to ban their usage in new cars. We know that a number of cities are planning fees for their usage in certain zones. The writing is on the wall. Here in the UK we will I am sure see some announcements in the next budget regarding diesel. Here is some information - http://www.buyacar.co.uk/cars/diesel-cars/460/diesel-tax-proposed-charges-and-surcharges-for-uk-drivers
  13. Mazda do a 175ps version of the CX5, which is the only one that is 4WD, and the only one that they will allow dynamic cruise control on for some odd reason. Yes, the RAV4 utilised an electric motor for the extra hp but isn't that part of the point? I would argue your points on Diesel but it is clear we will never agree. One thing is certain, most manufacturers are dropping diesel cars since the scandals over emissions rigging. We are also seeing government intervention world wide limiting their usage. It will I am sure only be a matter of time before cities begin banning or heavily charging for diesel usage. We are in 10 years going to see a huge change in what we drive towards EV and away from fossil fuel. ICE has been around for a long time, which is now coming to an end. I also think we are going to see a big reduction in owning a car in the first place. Interesting times ahead.
  14. A couple of problems there. The first is you are comparing the 150ps version of the Mazda which is a bit off compared to the 194 of the RAV4. PM10 you will find is also a big con. Most modern diesels test as 0 PM10, this is because they burn them off in a specific way which I am sure you are aware of. As such, during testing none will show but in the real world that will not be the case. Don't get me wrong, I am a big fan of what Mazda are doing to reduce pollutants, they were the first company to meet E6 and are well ahead of the curve. Diesel is however a waste product, only partly refined and containing a lot of crap we really do not want in the environment.. We will never get past that fact. Even Mazda admit that despite all the advances, EV or Hydrogen EV is going to be the next step. They do have to be applauded for what they are doing. For Mazda to state their supposedly lower CO2 emissions on a wheel to wheel basis they have to make a lot of assumptions based on how fuel is produced. It is very easy to look at electricity production in the USA which still has a heavy coal based element. I still do not think that even on motorways Diesel is cleaner than Hybrid as a result. That particulate burn will still happen. My Prius+ is also running on EV a lot of the time on my average motorway journey home, such as when descending or in traffic. As I live in Hertfordshire and travel into London most days the hybrid seems a more sensible option. P.S. I am not criticising your level of greenness here. We all try and do what we can in most cases.
  15. I was more on about overall particulates. Brake dust for instance is considerably less on full EV compared to a standard ICE car as a high percentage of braking is done through regenerative braking. I would love to know a case where Diesel cars are better than a hybrid for NOX for instance, or particulates from the exhaust. Size for size, CO2 isuaually lower for a hybrid but not by much although there are some shining examples. So compare the two models mentioned in this thread. The CX5 2.2 Auto Sport Nav at 175hp produces 152 g/km of CO2. Over 10000 miles 7.87KG of NOX. The RAV4 2.5 Hybrid Excel at 194Hp produces 118 g/km of CO2. Over 10000 miles 3.37KG of NOX, so less than half. That is not the full story though, calculating the NOX is part of the vehicles production and part of the production of the fuel used. That element can be controlled and dealt with in the plants. From the exhaust Hybrid trounces Diesel. The CX5 over 10000 miles slates out 4.6kg of NOX, the RAV4 just 0.11KG. This is the element that cannot be easily controlled and the one filling our crowded towns causing health issues. It may seem a little anal me researching all this, and it probably is. However I feel we should all if possible do what we can to reduce our impact on the planet.