2023 Toyota Prius Prime Front Charging 1668442183

Overview

Like its gasoline-electric hybrid counterpart, the 2023 Toyota Prius Prime plug-in hybrid discards its previous ugly duckling design and becomes a proverbial swan. Lower, wider and longer than before, the latest Prius Prime looks almost, dare we say, sporty. Complementing its new sheetmetal is a much-improved powerplant that pumps out a total of 220 horsepower—nearly 100 more than its predecessor. Even better, Toyota claims the latest plug-in Prius should improve the previous Prime’s EPA-rated 25-mile driving range by more than a dozen miles. In the context of a Prius, this new Prime is a beauty and a beast.

What’s new for 2023?

Toyota completely redesigned the Prius Prime for 2023, giving the plug-in hybrid a new look and a thoroughly overhauled chassis. As the second generation of the Japanese automaker’s TNGA-C architecture, the Prius Prime’s new underbody is said to be more rigid, weigh less and offer a lower center of gravity compared to last year’s previous-generation TNGA-C legs. Prius. A larger engine works with the car’s electric motors to deliver an additional 99 horsepower relative to the outgoing Prius Prime, while a new lithium-ion battery pack gives the latest plug-in Prius just under 40 miles of all-electric range should afford. series.

Prices and which one to buy

$32,000 (estimated)

XSE

$34,500 (estimated)

XSE Premium

$38,000 (estimated)

Right now, Toyota is mum on Prius Prime pricing. That said, we expect the model to see its price increase by a few thousand dollars across the board compared to the 2022 model, which started at $29,865. Gone for 2023 are the LE, XLE and Limited trims. Instead, the Prius Prime now comes in SE, XSE, and XSE Premium grades, all of which reflect the model’s newfound athleticism. We suspect the SE is the one to choose, as it comes well-equipped with items like an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system, a heated steering wheel, blind spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, lane centering and automatic high-beam headlights.

Engine, transmission and performance

Last year’s 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine is no more. In its place is a larger 2.0-liter unit. It combines with at least two electric motors: one that drives the drive wheels and another that controls a planetary gear set to reproduce the petrol engine’s grunt in a way that resembles a belt-driven continuously variable automatic transmission. We’re betting the 2023 Prius Prime will remain a front-drive-only affair, but Toyota may offer all-wheel drive as an extra-cost item. If that’s the case, then expect a so-equipped Prius Prime to include an additional electric motor that exclusively drives the car’s rear axle.

Fuel Economy and Real-World MPGe

A new lithium-ion battery pack promises to significantly improve the Prius Prime’s electric driving range from its outgoing 25 miles of EPA-rated range to just 40 miles. Adding a charge to the Prius Prime’s battery should also be easier than ever, thanks to roof-mounted solar panels that recharge the pack when the car is parked. Take the Prius Prime out for a drive and those solar panels send power to accessories, like the air conditioning system. Alas, these solar panels are not available on the lower SE and XSE trims. Relying on both its electric motors and four-cylinder engine for motivation, the 2023 Prius Prime should meet or exceed the 2022 model’s EPA combined fuel economy figure of 54 mpg, as well as its overall rating of 133 MPGe. For more information on the Prius Prime’s fuel economy, visit the EPA’s website.

Interior, comfort and cargo

As the 2023 Prius Prime casts a larger shadow than before, we expect its interior to offer a bit more space compared to last year’s car. That said, the car’s lower seating position and overall height can give those inside the impression that things are a bit more cramped than before. However, cargo room should improve courtesy of the battery pack’s new home under the rear seat. Regardless, we can confirm the new Prius Prime’s interior is as beautiful as the car’s exterior. The Prime’s cabin, which shares design cues with the bZ4X electric SUV, features a chic wraparound dash with a sizable center-mounted infotainment screen. Gone is the center-mounted gauge cluster of Priuses. Instead, the 2023 car has a cluster mounted directly in front of the driver. Additionally, the new Prime sees its switch moved from the dash to the center console.

Infotainment and connectivity

An 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system is standard on Prius Prime SE and XSE models, though a more mammoth 12.3-inch unit is available on the latter. The big-screen system comes standard on the top-of-the-line XSE Premium, as does a premium JBL sound system. Regardless of trim, every Prius Prime includes six USB-C ports and wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility.

Safety and Driver Assistance Features

Toyota matches the Prius Prime by several standards driver assistance technology; however, items such as a surround camera and front and rear parking assist systems are optional. For more information on the Prius Prime’s crash test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites. Key safety features include:

  • Standard automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection
  • Standard lane departure warning with lane keeping assist
  • Standard adaptive cruise control

Warranty and Maintenance Cover

Toyota’s warranty coverage matches the plans offered by many of its competitors, and even surpasses some competitors by including two scheduled maintenance visits within the first two years of ownership.

  • Limited warranty covers three years or 36,000 miles
  • Powertrain warranty covers five years or 60,000 miles
  • Hybrid components are covered for 10 years or 150,000 miles
  • Complimentary maintenance is covered for two years or 25,000 miles

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