After testing out my 2008 (used) Toyota Prius for quite a few months, I fell in love. So, it’d be nice to have a warranty and protection when you are going to use a car for a while. I traded my 2008 in, and purchased a 2011 Toyota Prius II.
The two are different creatures, as the 2008 feels lighter, and more like a small car. The 2011 feels more like a sedan, and honestly feels more sure-footed on the streets. It’s a heavier car, and you can definitely feel that. However, the engine has more power, along with the ability to regulate between “ecoboost” & “powerboost”, or just disabling them all for something in the middle. I bounce between them depending on my needs. The ecoboost is great for the freeway or anytime you are staying at a sustained speed and doesn’t require much acceleration. The fuel economy is quite nice at that point, and usually floats between 50-75 MPG. When accelerating onto the freeway, or needing to pass a vehicle very quickly, the powerboost is an enormous amount of energy. It actually surprises me how powerful it is… it’s saved my butt qute a few times when needing to get out of a sticky situation on the freeway & on the surface streets.
The sure-footed feeling is a definite plus, and I have tested this at 75 MPH when avoiding a big rock (looked like 3-5 inches in diameter) in the freeway that rolled out of a truck ahead of me. I was able to swing my car rapidly to the right to focus the rock directly between my wheels, and pull back rapidly shortly afterwards… to avoid a vehicle that wouldn’t slow down and just had to pass on my right after noticing me doing that. Not once did the power controls to the wheels kick in traction control or anything, and the tires did not even make a noise. I have the stock Yokohama Avid tires on there, at that.
It’s an interesting car, and a good cockpit feel in the front. The back seats remain the same, it seems.
The warranties are quite nice, since for the first 2 years/25,000 miles they take care of oil and maintenance. After that, there’s the 3 year/36,000 mile warranty, then the 5 year/60,000 drivetrain warranty, along with the 8 year/100,000 hybrid warranty which covers all hybrid components. (battery, cables, etc)
The air conditioner on the 2011 model seems to use quite a bit less battery energy, but it is a bit louder and far more noticable when sitting still. It’s not horrible, just quite noticable on the outside.
The servos and pumps are not as loud on the 2011 model either, as it seems they’ve reinvented the way the engine manages it’s fluids and other things.
It’s a nice vehicle, I highly recommend it. Where else can you get a 50 MPG vehicle that rides beautifully for $25,000?