My Prius Rant

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by EricBlair, Aug 19, 2012.

  1. EricBlair

    EricBlair New Member

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    I purchased a 2012 Prius II in March. I paid 23k for it, a great price for my area, I would say, from the research I did. I have put 7k miles on it up to now.

    The reason I wanted to buy a Prius was because I detest these high gas prices and I wanted a car with super mileage. With the Prius I have gotten that. Every tank since I bought the car has given me 600+ miles and that is amazing!

    However, in the Prius, Toyota is in essence wrapping the best automotive technology to come out in a very long time, with a very poorly executed feel. Here's what I mean. The interior of the Prius is "plasticky" and feels toy-like. Nothing feels firm, from steering wheel to dashboard. The interior carpet and seat mounts remind me of a small Toyota pick-up my dad bought in the 80's. On top of that I'm starting to hear small squeaks coming from different parts of the interior.

    But the thing I dislike the most is the suspension. This car has the worst suspension of any car I have ever owned, and I have never owned a luxury car. The suspension is like that of a Jeep, or an old pick-up. You feel and hear the car jolt at every minor road imperfection. Mind you, my tire pressure on all 4 is at 35, the recommended setting for minimizing hard suspension. A friend who owns a Prius told me that the reason suspension is lacking is because Toyota wanted to reduce the car's weight to increase mileage so they removed unessential parts, like some suspension parts. I have not driven a P3 or 4 to know whether this is only a problem in the 2. I don't think there is something wrong with the car, some defect or something, this is just how it is.

    Now, I realize I didn't buy a luxury car. In fact the only reason for my wanting a Prius was the excellent gas mileage, all else was secondary. And while I have not come to regret my purchase, I am disappointed that Toyota is using the Prius to sell the hybrid technology at the expense of the car as a whole. I feel I have paid 15k for the hybrid system and 8k for the rest of the car. 23k is not a small sum to pay for a car and I would suggest that Toyota take a holistic view to the design of the car. If they could design a top notch hybrid technology then surely they can execute a satisfying car experience for the user.

    Having said all that, as long as I continue to get 600+ miles out of the car I will still be happy with it despite the lackluster human interface.

    Happy driving!
     
  2. jadziasman

    jadziasman Prius owner emeritus

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    Ah yes, buyer's remorse. Most of us don't have the chance to drive a car for a couple of weeks to decide if it's what we really want or not.

    And yes, it would have been easy for you to learn the Prius suspension was harsh if you had driven on a road with bumps and potholes at the time you test drove it. Like you apparently did, I test drove my Prius over smooth pavement and did not notice the harshness of the suspension until later on. The suspension is what it is - nothing more. Most people don't look that closely at what kind of suspension a car has when buying new. I didn't.

    As to your issues with the interior, well, you can't blame the car for that. It should have been obvious to you the first time you entered it that it wasn't a luxury car and wasn't designed to be either. Your error, not Toyota's.

    $23K is still a bargain for a new Prius despite of its shortcomings given that it is still made in Japan and shipped here. Toyota is probably losing money with each one they sell here at 78 yen to the dollar.
     
  3. EricBlair

    EricBlair New Member

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    Like I said, I am not remorseful of buying the car, because my primary reason was super mileage, which I am getting.
     
  4. jadziasman

    jadziasman Prius owner emeritus

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    But if so, you wouldn't have anything to "rant" about.
     
  5. Momentuman

    Momentuman New Member

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    Perhaps the Camry hibrid would have been more to your liking. It surely has a nicer ride.
     
  6. Britprius

    Britprius Senior Member

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    Perhaps you might have been better off buying the Lexus exactly the same drive chain but with Lexus luxury and ride.
     
  7. car78412

    car78412 Member

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    I may be in the minority here but I find the ride of the suspension rather comfortable. Coming from an 06 Civic to a 10 Prius may be the reason but I have owned many cars and find driving my Prius one of the most satisfying in comfort and handling. After 31,000 miles, I still look foward to driving it. Silly me!
     
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  8. EricBlair

    EricBlair New Member

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    Yes, true. However, is it too much to expect a modicum of comfort for 23k these days? My prior car was 97 Corolla which I bought brand new for 15k and the ride was excellent.
     
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  9. Britprius

    Britprius Senior Member

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    Well I find the Prius has in my opinion has a good ride and is very quiet the main complaint being the lack of feel in the steering but, have now got used to it and unless I drive another car do not really notice it.This though is all subjective as different people have different views.
     
  10. a priori

    a priori Canonus Curiosus

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    I greatly enjoy my Prius for what it is. It is not a low-cost car, but it delivers on the high-tech end. I don't believe the ride is harsh, but that may be due to the fact I have a Prius V model (not the new V, the 2010 "5") with larger tires, etc. It also could come from my having driven nothing but a Prius for more than 6 years.

    I was disappointed in the interior trim of my 2010, when comparing it to my 2007. I do believe Toyota went more "plastic" in the interior appointments.

    I can't say I am disappointed in road noise, as I expected it. You could change this by painting insulation to the undercarriage. You'd also add considerable weight, change the balance of the car slightly and decrease the mileage (noticeably). I haven't gone that route, but it is one modification you can make to deal with cabin noise.
     
  11. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 'Orrible Oracle

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    That's precisely our trade-in path, from an 06 Civic Hybrid. That vehicle is still in the family, and I very occasionally drive it. The Civic has a few pluses: I prefer it's the dash layout and instruments, and there's an immediacy to it's road feel and acceleration that's kinda lacking in the Prius.

    But starting it up it's a vibration prone, cantankerous beast, compared to the Prius.

    The one quible I have with the Prius interior is the driver's floor mat: it has no rubber inlay, and wore through very quickly, by 10000 km it had a hole right through. Since the only Toyota option is to buy a complete set, and the new will likely wear just as fast, not sure what to do.
     
  12. fgp

    fgp Active Member

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    good thing you didnt buy a c like i did originally, ed. now THAT has a jarring suspension. as ive indicated my new liftback 2(II, two or whatever) is pretty comfy for me and i have had some super cars, like prosche mercedes etc. i dont claim that this rides or drives better than they do BUT it is ok and has definitely improved over the older prii. so im liking mine alot.
     
  13. phoenixgreg

    phoenixgreg Senior member

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    I've added Dynamat to all the doors. I've also undercoated each wheel well and that has really quieted the ride. Once it cools off here, I plan to add Dynamat under all the carpet and as high on the inside firewall as I can reach with it. That stuff really works albeit expensive. As far as weight, the lot of it would be no more than the weight of a child passenger, if that. MPG loss should be negligible.
     
  14. a priori

    a priori Canonus Curiosus

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    If all of those additions came to no more than 50 lbs., it really would be a rather negligible MPG hit. The cost would wipe out much of the fuel savings you enjoy with a Prius, but if it makes you more comfortable and a bit happier driving your car, I'm certain it would be worth the trade-off.

    Can you provide an estimate of the real weight added for each event and the cost (retail)?
     
  15. ProximalSuns

    ProximalSuns Senior Member

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    Prius III has a typical small car ride. No better but certainly no worse.
     
  16. a priori

    a priori Canonus Curiosus

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    I do have to note the drive of my Prius III is significantly better than my Prius II. I think this has something to do with the increased size and weight of the car, perhaps also the slightly different body style. The real BIG reason for the better ride is the 17" wheels and the 215 low-profile tires. This car really holds the road well, particularly cornering and at highway speeds, regardless of the winds.

    Recaro seats would be nice, but I'll live with what I have.
     
  17. Britprius

    Britprius Senior Member

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    Generally going to larger wheels with low profile tyres gives better road holding but makes the ride harder and more uncomfortable.
     
  18. phoenixgreg

    phoenixgreg Senior member

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    Dynamat for car doors.JPG Dynamat for under car carpet.JPG
    Here's the Dynamat website...they offer 2 downloadable pdfs (probably gives the weight of each product):
    Dynamat XTREME

    I did some searching on Amazon and found the extreme door kit (2 needed) and the extreme under-carpet kit (again, 2 probably needed to do all of a Prius). All in all since shipping looks to be free, you'd be looking at a cost just north of $400. Now, you have to ask yourself if you can do this installation yourself, or have it done (labor cost unknown)? Anyway, here are the ads...I summed the total weight from the tech specs and all of it combined is about 43 pounds - about the weight of a small child passenger.
     
  19. a priori

    a priori Canonus Curiosus

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    Thanks!

    How about the undercoating? That seems to me to be a heavier issue.
     
  20. a priori

    a priori Canonus Curiosus

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    I agree the more "balloon" in the tire, the softer the ride, but when travelling at high speed on wide-open highways in the windy Midwest, there is much more "comfort" to be had from feeling snug to the road.
     
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