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Want to Buy a Prius V

Discussion in 'Prius v Main Forum' started by CrazyJen, Mar 27, 2012.

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  1. CrazyJen

    CrazyJen Junior Member

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    Location:
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    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius v wagon
    Model:
    Three
    Hello, I'm looking for some real life experience for a couple questions I have regarding the Prius V. I really think I will enjoy owning one of these for 90% of my driving needs. I keep to a 10 mile radius of home the majority of time.
    However, several times a year we go on long car trips to visit family. I'm curious how Prius V owners feel the car does on long drives. Very specifically, we drive from San Francisco to Lake Tahoe, San Francisco to Bend Or and San Francisco to LA (over the grapevine). How does the Prius do going up mountains? I generally drive at 75 mph on these long drives. I'm just looking for real world experience on this, as I can't test drive the vehicle to these places nor do reviews really talk about long distance drives.

    For reference, I am replacing a 2001 Hyundai Elantra.
    Thank you so much for your help.
  2. Chazz8

    Chazz8 Gadget Lover

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  3. CrazyJen

    CrazyJen Junior Member

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    That is PERFECT!!
  4. 12get12

    12get12 Junior Member

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    I held it at 70 MPH over the Grapevine (Tejon Pass) and could have gone faster but there were slow SUVs and Trucks in front of us.
  5. Keiichi

    Keiichi Active Member

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    Well, Can't say I drive the length that you are looking for answers for, although there was someone posting that they did a long trip from Bay Area on down to Los Angeles and found it enjoyable.

    I would ask what you may consider in the v for your decision, such as are you going for the base, the mid-range or the top-line model. The engine is about the same and the only comfort issue I can think of is the Cloth/Softex synth leather that might be the level of comfort. Heated seats come into play with the Top-line model.

    While you generally drive at 75 mph, I recommend dropping your driving speed around 70mph, as catgic sort of calculated that you get a rough sweet spot for 'speed' and 'mpg' around 70mph. One critic had for the rear passenger area said the ventilation was a little lacking, so for hot days, it may be a bit trying for the riders back there.
  6. Xjaddiction

    Xjaddiction New Member

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    There isn't a problem with that kind of driving. I just did an 820 round trip with 4 large adults, through the mountains of east TN and NC. I set the cruise on 75 to 80. never, and I'm a power speed freak, never did I think the car was under powered. It is not a race car, but Toyota has done a good job not only with gear ratio and MPG, but the handling of the V is perfect. The V is better and a lot more comfortable than the 2011 Gen III that I just traded it for. I've taken long trips in the Gen 3's and I really didn't care for it with my family of 4. I have two girls, 8 and 13. In the V, even with my friend who is 6'6", and three more guys, no problem. The V shocked the crap out of all of them... including me.

    The surprising thing to me, I have the base V2 (which isn't very basic, with back up camera, lumbar support, great b-tooth capability)... is how well it handles loaded, unloaded, and in the rain. It doesn't get affected by any of it. Very smooth ride. Very predictable handling. Wind will push it some, but I get the same push in my Expedition. The ride was much harsher in the 3rd gen. My wife still has a third gen, so I've compared the two ,many times.

    The only thing you have to get used to with the power, is the CVT tranny. I had one in my Ford 500. Sounds and revs like tranny is slipping, but the V still has good power if you don't let the noise bother you. At speed, on cruise in the mountains, you won't notice the noise of the engine. I'll use the power mode when I get stuck behind a truck in a climb, or at times entering the interstate. The thing scoots along in that mode.

    I love the car! I've always been a big V-8 fan, but this V... It gets the job done well. Don't be afraid of a long trip. The thing rocks!
  7. pdp

    pdp New Member

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    To the OP, my wife and I are in pretty much the exact situation as you. We live in Nor Cal, tend to stay within a 10-20 mile radius of our home most of the time. My in laws are in LA so we make that trip a couple time a year.

    I think everyone else that responded covered most everything, the revs of the engine were probably the most annoying thing about going over the Grapevine, but in Power Mode, the car had plenty of oomph to make it over comfortably. Sure, you can stay in ECO mode and do the same, but you'll just have to press the gas harder and psychologically, that makes the car feel weaker.

    We have a 1 year old and the trip was an absolute joy with the v. The back seat was so spacious, all our luggage and presents (it was Christmas) fit in the trunk beautifully, in addition to a playpen and stroller. There was so much space that my wife could choose to sit in the front or back, where typically before in our IS300, we had to use the extra cabin seat as extra luggage room.

    I also wanted to add that anything over 70MPH and you'll see your MPG start dipping noticeably. Normal everyday driving, we get 45MPG+. Driving down to LA we dipped down to under 40MPG, and I was taking it pretty easy, going between 70-75MPH. Coming back, I got the hang of gliding a little more, plus we got caught in traffic due to an accident, so we averaged 42ishMPG on the way back.
  8. mattheikkila

    mattheikkila New Member

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    I also live in norcal, and this last weekend drove down to LA. Took the 5 and stayed around 70mph. After the first hour or so just used the cruise control. Got about 42.7 mpg, and that's about where I was at at the beginning of the grapevine, so coasting down it recovered most of the gas mileage I lost.

    We drove all the way up PCH from about Ventura to Monterrey back, and got about 46mpg.

    It made it up the grapevine just fine, as I expected after driving in the Oakland hills on a daily basis (shorter tests but the same idea)
  9. CrazyJen

    CrazyJen Junior Member

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    Thank you everyone, I'm sold then. I have two young children, and long drives are already hard just because of that. I was worried that it might make trips longer, but it sounds like I should be able to drive it in about the same time with no real problems on the mountains. So glad! I'm so excited to play the MPG game. :D
  10. Keiichi

    Keiichi Active Member

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    Having a hybrid doesn't make the trips 'longer'. :) They just make it a little easier on the gas usage in comparison. I think the hill issue you would have the same problem if you went with just a normal 4 cyl engine car. Mostly just engine whine and a little slowdown, but that's about it. :)
  11. Xjaddiction

    Xjaddiction New Member

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    Driving the Prius is a learning experience. The nice thing is that you can drive normally and get 42 MPG. Without a thought about how you drive. With just a little effort, the car will easily do 45 MPG. I've found that getting up to speed quickly and getting off the go pedal once up to desired speed, yields better MPG. I've done better MPG's with cruising 75 MPH than 70. Why, maybe just my car, but that seems to be the sweet spot.

    The really great thing, well one of many, is traffic. When your just sitting there, music playing, A/C on... and the engine is off. Your wasting no fuel like all the other dodos in there big SUV's (I used to be one) That's when you start to get it. But, then their is just so much more.

    One more thing. The V dash is much better than the 3 gen's dash. That console in the 3G takes up a bunch of room. It's just in the way. The buttons for the power, echo, and EV modes are up on the passenger side of the dash. In the V they are right at your finger tips with your arm comfortably resting on the center console. You need to scoot, move a finger and push the power button. It's just right there.
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