1.5 Million Kilometre Taxi

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by Tideland Prius, Apr 21, 2012.

  1. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    Some of the older PriusChat members may remember Andrew Grant, the first Prius taxi owner in the world. He made the news headline when Toyota asked to take his 2001 Prius taxi back to Japan to inspect the hybrid components and to see how they've withstood the duties of taxi service in 2003 as he had the highest mileage Prius in the world at that time (~ 332,000km). Toyota gave him a 2003 Prius as a token of their appreciation.

    This is the latest that I found on Facebook.


     
  2. dogfriend

    dogfriend Human - Animal Hybrid

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    But the dust to dust thing said they only would go 109 k miles. :madgrin:
     
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  3. cnschult

    cnschult Active Member

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    I think he got his moneys worth for both cars
     
  4. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    i grew up with an andrew grant! can there be more than one? is he in his late fifties and from outside boston, ma? i clicked the link, but it said unavailable.
     
  5. Airbalancer

    Airbalancer Active Member

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    any other info about his taxis ?
     
  6. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    Lots of Andrew Grants. This guy is Canadian, and drove taxis in Vancouver. So far as I know, Andrew was the first cabbie to use the Prius as a Taxi in Vancouver, and probably one of the first, if the not *the* first, throughout Canada and North America. His story spread widely, and he influenced literally hundreds of other cabbies to switch to Prius too. Nowadays in Vancouver, I gather that Prius is the most common taxi on the roads.

    Grant stopped driving taxis for a living a couple years ago, so his advocacy of Prius is likely less active nowadays.

    Bisco, if you sign into FB you can see a public home page of Andrews. Very little there unfortunately. I could not find the quote from the OP, maybe the reader has to be a 'friend.'

    By the way, 1.5 million km is 920,000 miles. No wonder Toyota was not terribly interested in 2FasForU's offer to take his 400k mile car for breakdown.
     
  7. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    There was a PDF of his service record but I couldn't find it.

    The 2001 Prius had its front brakes replaced at 147,000km and the rear brakes at 332,000km IIRC. That was what I took away from that service record. We have 170,000km on our 2005 with more than 50% of the original brake pads left and mostly city driving.

    The 2004 has been replaced by a Camry Hybrid but driven by other drivers as he is no longer in the taxi business.
     
  8. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    I'd be curious to see if he has any gen3 Prii on his fleet and if so, what his experiences of them is? I wonder what the highest mileage gen3 would be?
     
  9. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    There are quite a number of Gen 3 and Prius v cabs in Vancouver now (and I'd wager 90% of the taxis there are Toyotas now. There's a handful of Mazda3, Jetta and Civic Hybrid cabs and of course you have the Dodge Caravan or Chrysler Town & Country for the UK market as minivans for those times you need 7 passengers or wheelchair accessibility. A few are Toyota Sienna minivans).

    Our local new stations will do segments on hybrid taxis from time to time (seems like they do one every few years). We'll keep an eye out if a new one surfaces.

    Have you talked to the other Gen 3 taxi owners here (like socrates). Are they all experiencing the same steering rack issue?
     
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  10. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    Socrates has reported early HV battery failure in many gen3 Greek taxis with some as low as 126,000 KM (78,000 miles). Not sure if that's the heat of Greece or the European streets. No reports of steering issues though.

    Of gen3 cabs in the UK, the only ones I communicate with have t-spirits (top of range model) which I understand have a better steering system. They also have a lower mileage than me atm.
     
  11. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    I saw that that thread. I'm not sure. I think most Prius taxis in North America have been in the temperate climate or colder :p. Heat is worse for the battery than cold IIRC.

    Yes, those with the 17" alloys have a different EPS motor than those with the 15". Here, most would have the 15" model since the 17" is the higher end and most cabbies are content with the base model (although I have seen one Canadian Touring Package cab and he runs the LED low beams even in the day so we'll see how long that lasts.)
     
  12. finman

    finman Senior Member

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    only 810,000 miles to go!
     
  13. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    I couldn't view Andrew Grant's page either but I finally found one of his posts at Andrew Grant from... | Facebook.
     

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  14. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    I'm glad someone resurrected this thread. Reading the above post gives me a tight feeling in my stomach. At 71,000 miles my inverter failed.

    Unfortunately it might appear the gen3 isn't as hardly as the gen2 Prius. It appears European taxi drivers and gen3 Prii don't go together well. Maybe the tighter, narrow, slower and more congested streets don't mix with the Prius.
     
  15. Britprius

    Britprius Senior Member

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    I think this is because the gen3 Prius was designed more for motorway use than the gen2 being aimed at town use.

    John (Britprius)
     
  16. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    The inverter is different (much smaller) than the Gen 2. Maybe they switched supplier?
     
  17. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    Or maybe they over engineered the gen2 to get people onboard to the idea of hybrids and then cut costs on the later model? Toyota are engineers, they know exactly how long a part can last under what type of use. With hindsight it's no surprise the UK hybrid warranty was reduced to 60,000 miles on the original gen3. I just think they've over done it. The gen2 was bomb proof and the gen3 far from it. I'd go as far as saying the gen3 is weak. It's too much of a thoroughbred, too highly strung/tuned. Great at first and with light use, but a nightmare under heavy use like a taxi.

    And before you say taxi use is unusual and beyond the cars design, I'll tell you that Peugeots, Skodas and Fords manage the use a lot better than this gen3 has for me, or the Greek cabbies. I've never had so many parts replaced on a car in such a low mileage. The dealers are great, the fuel economy is fantastic, but the reliability? Not so.
     
  18. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    Interesting. Warranty is the same here (8 years/100,000 miles)
     
  19. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    Interesting.... Your hypothesis is a possibility. I'd imagine Toyota has some mileage and time lifespan targets and does test parts until failure. I'm guessing your experience w/the inverter was just bad luck. 2 fas 4 u passed 150K miles on his Prius v wagon (Prius v: 100,000 Mile Club | Page 5 | PriusChat). I didn't see inverter failures in the Gen 3 Priuses after 160K miles at Advanced Vehicle Testing Activity - Hybrid Electric Vehicles.

    It'd be interesting to hear the opinions of Luscious Garage | Hybrid Specialists on Gen 3 vs. 2 durability from what they've seen. There are a fair # of Prius taxis in SF.

    In the US, the inverter is covered under an 8 year/100K mile warranty on Gen 3 Prius.
     
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  20. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    Makes me wonder if the US and European Prii are actually the same car or do the Euro versions have weaker components in them? I know we get the Li-on battery in the Prius+, probably as a test bed for later US release? Maybe European taxi use is harder with slower, start stop traffic where getting upto 30 mph for any length of time can be bonus and traffic lights spaced sometimes at 100 yard intervals in city centers. It's difficult for me to compare with the US as I've never driven there but you seem to have a block system in cities which are more evenly spaced. Here it's a legacy system with some from 1000 years ago.

    I went into Prius ownership confident in Toyotas past reliability. That may have been a mistake; 3 steering motors, 1x HV battery ecu and 1x inverter at 71,000 miles. Hmmmm.
     
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