Before buying Prius, what did you cross-shop?

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by TimBikes, Oct 26, 2005.

  1. TimBikes

    TimBikes New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2005
    2,492
    245
    0
    Location:
    WA
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    I just read another post with a link comparing the Prius to other cars like the Ford Focus. There seems to be a general feeling in the press / elsewhere that people buying Prius are (or should be) cross-shopping against cars like the Focus, the Corolla, Matrix/Vibe, etc. I have a suspicion this is inaccurate and that many are looking at more expensive cars before settling on the Prius. I know I did.

    I looked for 18 months, cross-shopping the Acura TSX and TL, Infiniti G35, Lexus IS300, Mazda RX8, and Honda Accord. To me it came down to the functionality of the Prius hatchback combined with the great MPG and comparable or lower price, though I feel I gave up on the handling / performance and styling.

    What other cars did you PriusChat members consider buying (if any) before buying the Prius? And what do you feel you gained / lost by going w/ the Prius?
     
  2. geologyrox

    geologyrox New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2005
    513
    0
    0


    Well, I'm still Prius-less, hope I qualify to answer. I've got a 1996 now, and I was hoping to hold out till the Camry Hybrid came out. Then my poor current Camry started dying, and me with only 7k in the car fund(I had expected to buy in late 2006) Anyway, i started doing research, briefly considered a Sonata (amazingly nice car for the price, i enjoyed driving it) and then someone posted a link somewhere about PV-EV.

    Now I want a Prius =) As near as I can figure, I won't feel like I'm losing anything in the Prius, I'll get the satisfaction of driving a super-low emissions vehicle, and $20 gas tanks, all for LESS than the regular version of the Camry I would have bought- much less the hybrid.
     
  3. 2Hybrids

    2Hybrids New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2005
    565
    0
    0
    Location:
    Eustis, Florida
    Camry, Corolla and Civic....but pretty much new that we'd be going for the Prius...
     
  4. maggieddd

    maggieddd Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2005
    2,090
    12
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    honestly, I didn't consider any other vehicles. One day I cam home and said "That's it Corolla is old and I want a Prius", so next day we went to get one, of course I failed to find one that was the color I wanted and after 2 days I said well, who cares what calor it is, so I called one dealer close to my work, asked if they had any Priuses, they said they did, I asked for package #6, they said that had it, so I said please put my name on it and I am coming to get it. And I got it.
     
  5. tomdeimos

    tomdeimos New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2004
    995
    2
    0
    Location:
    Lexington, MA
    I considered a Honda Civic hybrid primarily and test drove one.

    I looked at the Insight, a Buick, the Focus, a Highlander and even a GMC Envoy.
    I only drove diesels and was not too prepared to pick anything else, after being forced to!

    Fact is the car I wanted was the EV1 which was promised to be available in MA but never really got here. I decided a Prius with EV button was as close to that as I could get!
    That ended my looking around.
     
  6. Spunky

    Spunky New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2005
    469
    1
    0
    My husband and I were replacing my '96 Honda Civic. She got 32 miles to the gallon and had been trouble free, a great car. I wanted a car that was just as economical and dependable. Dan's an engineer and wanted the new car to be a bit more "gutsy" than the Civic.

    We had heard about hybrids and were interested in driving a car that put out low emissions. A regular Civic would be gas and emission efficient, besides being dependable and neither of us had any experience with a hybird. We decided to visit both the local Honda and Toyota dealers and check out all the options.

    We test drove a Honda Civic Hybrid and a Prius the same day. We agreed that the Prius "felt" like a better car; more substantial and lots of feedback mechanisms. It was also more costly but that was justified by it being better engineered.

    Briefly considered the Matrix, an Avalon, the RAV4 and a couple of the Hondas but the Prius had very low emissions, was surprisingly roomy, sipped gas, included lots of toys (NAV system, mounted computer, etc.) and was fun to drive. Dan even "chirpped" the tires of the Prius on the test drive.

    The salesperson took my Civic for the trade-in price we expected, offered $500 off MSRP right at the start of bargaining, threw in a cargo net, floor mats, and a rear bumper protector/decal. We selected one of the four Prii on the lot (the red one :) )and drove home in it. Painless.

    Katrina hit the Gulf two weeks later.
     
  7. Kiloran

    Kiloran New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2005
    1,225
    0
    0
    I mostly looked into the Honda Insight and a little at the Honda Civic.
    The Prius seemed like a better deal. B)
     
  8. HeyKB

    HeyKB Not so new member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2005
    108
    19
    0
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    We looked at the SAAB 93, a couple of Pontiacs, and tried to test drive a HCH. The Honda dealer didn't have any hybrid Civics in stock, took our number to call when he got one we could drive and never called us. We looked the Hyundai Sonatas and decided we liked the '05 styling much more than the '06. The Sonata doesn't get very good mileage, though.

    The Prius was the last of the test drives. The things that sold us: it's peppy enough, surprisingly roomy, has great gadgets (pkg 6), and oh I hear it gets good mileage. :)

    We got it for MSRP at the end of July '05. Katrina changed the car market a few weeks later.

    ~Karl B.
     
  9. MBranstein

    MBranstein New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2005
    288
    0
    0
    Location:
    Prospect, KY
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    I test drive a Honda Accord V6 Hybrid. It was the worst drive I ever had. With a base price in the upper 20K's, the car was much less that I expected. Gas mileage wasn't very appealing and the car felt like it was a expensive luxury-looking car build on a very roomy and hollow frame. I did not feel safe driving the Accord. Nor did I enjoy the confort of the ride.

    My next test-drive was the Prius. I was so disappointed with the Accord that I was really worried that the Prius would be just as bad, or even worse. I had mentally set myself up for disaster, in fact. To my surprise, the Prius was very smooth - I coudln't feel the engine switch "gears" (because there is no transmission or concept of "gears"). The ride was fun in fact. On top of the excitment, the car had all of these really cool tech. features.

    A few days later, I test drove again and signed my paperwork for an '06.

    EDIT: Actually, I really wanted a Volvo S60 AWD to complement our S70, but gas mileage was a huge hit for us. We drive a lot to visit relatives in other states. Additionally, I'm getting ready to retire my 1992 Camry - it's still in excellent condition, but ready to find a more needy owner than myself.
     
  10. Bionic

    Bionic New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2005
    129
    0
    0
    Location:
    Delaware
    We test-drove a Civic Si (2005 of course), Audi A3, and the Prius. It was a very hard choice between the A3 and the Prius, but I'm happy with my decision (at least, I will be once my Barcelona Red '06 is in my driveway :D )
     
  11. CH

    CH New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    9
    0
    0
    Just looked at the Chrysler PT Cruiser 2.4 auto, but decided for the Prius, basically for the environmental issues (the air pollution in The Netherlands is about the worst of Europe) and the insane gas prices (1.70 dollar per litre)....
     
  12. Wayne

    Wayne Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2005
    723
    26
    0
    Location:
    Fort Wayne, IN
    I looked at mostly station wagons and SUVs ranging from $17k to $45k+. None excited me, and I believe a car should excite you if you're going to buy it.

    I DID NOT look at the Prius, actually was close-minded to it (for all the usual reasons -- too new a technology (NOT), too many parts (later learned it has one of the highest reliability ratings), etc), but the other vehicles were so uninspired and even got less MPG than when I bought my car 20-years ago that I opened my mind and started looking at it. The more I learned about it, the more excited I got. It's the KING of hybrids, and has a high geek factor, which is exciting to me. Needless to say, I found what I wanted to spend my money on!!! :D
     
  13. paprius4030

    paprius4030 My first Prius

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2004
    2,075
    288
    0
    Location:
    Ormond Beach,Fl.
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    I only looked at the Prius. Thought it would be too small, but once I drove it I HAD to have one! If it wasn't a hatchback I wouldn't have considered it though. It replaced my short wheelbase Chevy Venture. The Prius fits perfectly for both our personal and businees needs.
     
  14. Flivver

    Flivver Junior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2005
    10
    0
    0
    Location:
    Oregon
    My wife and I looked at the Lexus 400h (to replace our '99 Rx300) but encountered a rude and dismissive salesman, so we went to a Toyota lot, test drove the Highlander hybrid and put down a $1000 deposit. Then two things happened. We became increasingly unhappy with what we learned about the Highlander's mediocre fuel economy, and one of our daughters bought a Prius and took us for a drive. Case closed. We went back to our Toyota salesman and had him order a Prius instead. It arrived two months ago and we've been grinning ever since.
     
  15. agill

    agill New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2005
    63
    0
    0
    Location:
    Lebanon (New Hampshire)
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    II
    My wife and I took the decision of buying a new car when her Toyota Camry died. We considered a Honda Civic hybrid, and a Corolla, but finally fell for the charms of a Prius. Its futuristic features ( I am a bit of a techno-freak), smooth drive, and most of all, the winning MPG figures won us over. Also, one thing I must mention is that i have an excellent dealer who impressed us with his knowledge of the car.
     
  16. lbligh

    lbligh Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2005
    104
    0
    0
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    We were interested in a family sedan but also wanted good mileage and a hatchback. We considered the Scion XB and would have test-driven it if we hadn't tried the Prius first. We were interested in the Malibu Maxx because it is a hatchback, and the Camry and Accord because they are reliable family sedans, but the Prius had all the features we wanted so it was NO CONTEST.
     
  17. galaxee

    galaxee mostly benevolent

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2005
    9,810
    427
    0
    Location:
    MD
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    since my husband works for the dealer, we were looking around at the nicer used cars (a couple lexus cars, things like that) or a new camry loaded to the gills at employee pricing.

    then he said i should look at the prius. he drove one for work purposes and loved it, and said i would like it too.

    ok, so i looked. and liked. a lot.

    we waited 4 months and paid msrp instead of employee price, which ended up costing a couple thousand more than a similarly-equipped camry. but in the end i'm much happier with something so unique that gets such great mileage and reduces our footprint on the world.
     
  18. jayselle

    jayselle Member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2005
    192
    1
    0
    Location:
    Oklahoma
    Vehicle:
    2011 Prius
    Model:
    V
    I agree. I looked at cars in the 30k price range. Nissan 350Z, VW Passat, Infinity G35, BMW 3 Series, Mazda RX8.

    I liked the gas savings of the Prius and it seemed more high tech than the other.s
     
  19. jimofdg

    jimofdg New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2004
    533
    0
    0
    Location:
    DG, IL, US
    Funny you should ask. I kept the list of what I was looking at from March to August, 2004, when I got my Prius out of town. The first goal was to get a replacement for a Honda CR-V that had gotten accepted to college (as a legacy - that is, my son got in first). Low gas costs and my personal comfort were next.

    I hadn't really tried more than three cars in any previous shopping project. Here's what I actually went out and sat in or drove, indicating more interest than just reading all about other cars.

    Toyota Highlander
    Toyota Matrix
    Scion tC (still wish this thing had a hybrid!)
    Honda Accord
    Honda Civic Hybrid (dealer tried to talk me out of it or to lease)
    Subaru Forester
    Subaru Legacy (a nice surprise)
    Hyundai Elantra
    Chrysler Crossfire (really depends how tall you are - at 5'8" I was cramped)
    Saturn VUE (still noisy)
    VW Beetle Turbo (helped me enjoy the Prius interior more)
    VW Passat Turbo (helped me enjoy any other car more)
    Mazda Tribute (another nice surprise - so was the recall and subsequent increase in cash back)
    Mazda RX-8
    Mazda 3
    Mazda 6 (I would have liked these sedans but the steering wheel felt off-center to me)

    These were all 2004 model cars. I love the Prius and have averaged 48 mpg over the past 14 months and 13000 miles.
     
  20. sailatinu

    sailatinu New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2005
    38
    0
    0
    Location:
    Naperville, IL
    I actually have (and still am) researching details on the Prius '06.
    I'm excited, and have been.

    I found it compared to some of the other hybrids (okay, the only other real two out there - civic and insight) to be the best across all boundries.

    I interpret it as the most hackable car out there, which is great if you're an engineering geek like me. (A shame I'm not quite so mechanical or I'd appreciate other crap cars better)

    I called my dealer, told him what I was interested in.. tried to find out if he had more information than me, and gave him what would be my ideal order - to ofcourse revisit when more details (like pricing and details of what else comes with package #8 comes out)

    Since if it is only leather, then I'll evalulate whether that is a necessity.

    The day will come, when my stark black Prius comes, so I can have the windows proper tinted (for my hyper-sensitivity to light) and drive around a stealth darkness mobile!
     
Loading...