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2013 Toyota Prius v Can Really Haul

Space isn’t the only thing that’s big about this new member of the Prius family.

by on Aug.24, 2012

Toyota's Prius v is the biggest in the newly expanded three-car Prius family.

You just couldn’t do this in a regular Toyota Prius. Toyota’s new Prius v, a larger version of Toyota’s hyper-mileage halo car, showed up during moving week, as we moved 20 miles west to be closer to work and school.

We repeatedly stuffed the v – essentially a wagon version of the Prius hatchback – with boxes, bags and whatnot for multiple trips to the new house. While it couldn’t match the pair of minivans that were also making multiple trips, those giant draft horses don’t come close to matching the mileage return from the biggest of what is now a three-member Prius hybrid family. The third model, the Prius C slots in as the baby bear option in the Prius clan. Even doing moving van duty, the Prius returned better than 42 mpg, mostly spent on a rural two-lane.

Economical Reading!

While the original Prius’ back end slopes for a more aerodynamic shape, the v’s back end is squared off. That bigger tail gives the Prius v more than 36 cubic feet of space for your junk, compared to 21.6 cubes for the regular Prius.


First Drive: 2012 Toyota Prius v

Keeping it all in the family.

by on Jun.22, 2011

The 2012 Toyota Prius v is the first in an expanding family of Prius-badged hybrids.

There was a sense of déjà vu as we walked up to the new hybrid parked outside the Eagle Crest Conference Center.  But no wonder.  All similarities are purely intentional when it comes to the new 2012 Toyota Prius v, the first addition to what is soon to become an extended family of Prius-badged hybrids.

It’s been 11 years since the original Prius made its debut, promising an under-the-hood revolution that seems especially timely today with fuel prices nudging upwards towards record levels.  Surprisingly, though, that revolution never quite seems to take off.  Despite $4-a-gallon gas, hybrids today account for barely 3% of the total U.S. market and, all told, if you added them all up their collective sales didn’t match the May numbers for Detroit’s three most popular muscle cars, the Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro and Dodge Challenger.

The Inside Story!

Okay, maybe May wasn’t a great example, as Japanese makers like Toyota were still struggling with production cuts caused by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan.  Sales of the Prius alone were off as much as 40%, company officials lament, due to supply shortages.  Indeed, for the moment, there’s barely a 4-day supply of the original Prius in U.S. showrooms.  The fact is, while American motorists have yet to embrace hybrids, on the whole, they’re in love with the distinctive little Toyota, which now accounts for about 50% of the gas-electric models sold in the U.S. (For more, Click Here.)

So, is it any surprise that when Toyota decided to roll out an assortment of new standalone hybrid models, like the new Prius v, that they would share the familiar and popular badge – and maintain a very familial appearance?