New driver in CA: Prius Prime LE or Prius LE

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by Lili Eridani, Apr 13, 2021.

  1. JohnPrius3005

    JohnPrius3005 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2021
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    Location:
    California and Hawaii
    Vehicle:
    2004 Prius
    Model:
    II
    Hi Lili, I do not in any way mean any of this as advice, nor do I intend to debate the merits or otherwise of car insurance, but I merely present the below as options which exist. These are some of the reasons I have opted for old cheap cars instead of new ones.
    Costco is a great way for saving money on a lot of things.

    You can get insurance, thru Costco, very cheap, provided you only get liability insurance. Of course this leaves you exposed to all the other risks.

    But, from experience and again I won't get into a debate on this, if you have"full coverage" insurance and you ever make a claim or get some speeding tickets, the price of even mandatory liability insurance goes up so much that it would have been cheaper in the long run to not have the coverage, and just pay out of your pocket.

    Also if you have a loan on a car, the lender will require you to have various different coverage which precludes only having liability insurance.

    And you might want to keep in mind when you think about all this that the only way to get any money out of your or the other drivers' insurance, is by using a lawyer.

    In my cynical opinion insurance is just an expensive, illusory, feel good transaction in which the insurance company uses your money to pay its lawyers to avoid having to pay out anything like what you think you are owed in the event of a claim. Once again, no debate, just my old guy experience.

    Best of luck.
     
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  2. BiomedO1

    BiomedO1 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2021
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    Location:
    SacTown, Ca
    Vehicle:
    2021 Prius Prime
    Model:
    LE
    Looks like the monthly expenses just keeps increasing.

    IMHO - the property damage and uninsured motorist property & liability is a bit low. There are many aggressive, uninsured motorist in the south bay area. I've been hit by two in the last decade - ended up suing both of them on my own; since the insurance companies told me to just write-it-off. As John-3005 stated above, it's simply an illusion and you won't be made whole again. Like John, I'm down to just carrying liability and property damage, taking on the rest of the financial liability myself. Everyone's financial situation is different, I'm lucky enough to have the means to do this.

    As a first time driver in the south bay, I'll tell you, what I've told my nieces. Find an older, reliable, well maintained car that you can buy for cash. Lower expenses (except maintenance) and less anxiety when someone scratches or puts a dent into it - which will eventually happen when parked on the streets ("old guy experience"). It must have an alarm/tracking system installed; which you would've installed in the prime anyways. Think of this as a training run, in expectations and expenses of owning a car in the densely populated South Bay.

    Good Luck....
     
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  3. Lili Eridani

    Lili Eridani New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2021
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    Location:
    San Mateo
    Vehicle:
    2021 Prius Prime
    Model:
    LE
    Thank you all! This is exactly the type of feedback and advice I am looking for, experienced prius drivers!! many thanks

    I appreciate all your thoughts, I agree with most things you say about the insurance, my colleagues have told me that even when they get a small incident (window broken or scratches) they don't even use the insurance.

    Does the prius prime 2021 come with an alarm system? I couldn't find details on this. It says it has a car theft locator.

    The dealer also offered to install an alarm for 525 USD but I rather not work that in with them.
     
  4. BiomedO1

    BiomedO1 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2021
    49
    32
    0
    Location:
    SacTown, Ca
    Vehicle:
    2021 Prius Prime
    Model:
    LE
    410
    It's more a car immobilizer, than an alarm. It'll honk the horn and flash the lights, if you force a door open without a key fob on you. Otherwise it won't go off; even when someone lifts the car and removes the cat. It needs a tremor/motion sensor for me to consider it an alarm - $50 max. option and I'm being very generous.
    Car thief location runs through the Toyota SOS system; Toyota's version of Onstar. Even if you opt.-out of the monthly connection fees; I'm sure it can be remotely triggered - as long as it's within cell tower range.
    My niece had a Wifi based alarm system installed in her 2000 Rav4 AWD for $200 + $10/monthly for network charges. She's in college back east and wanted, (she claims needed :rolleyes:), remote start - to warm the car on winter mornings. It sends an SMS every time the alarm is triggered and what was triggered. I joke with her, "now you need to install drive cameras, to see who/what's triggering her alarm".:D:LOL::ROFLMAO: The alarm system has GPS tracking; so we know where her car is at all times.:oops:
     
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  5. PiPLosAngeles

    PiPLosAngeles Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2012
    1,198
    555
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    Vehicle:
    2021 Prius Prime
    Model:
    LE
    If I remove the front wheels and fold down the rear seats I can put two full sized mountain bikes in the Prime (a Canondale and a Gary Fisher). It's a little bit of a pain to "tetris" them in there, but not too much.
     
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