Prime Questions and Things to Know?

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by PiPDude, Mar 1, 2018.

  1. PiPDude

    PiPDude New Member

    Mar 1, 2018
    Other Hybrid

    I'm in the UK, and looking at a Prime.

    I have owned a Toyota hybrid for a few years now, so I'm familiar with the technology, etc.. but looking at the Prime, and wondering if there is anything I should be aware of before I go to the local dealership for a closer look?

    The spec I'm looking at is similar to the Premium spec in the US.

    Something I have been wondering about is the charge mode, vs. plugging in the wall. Most times I can plug in, so that isn't a problem, but in the case where the car itself is used to charge the battery, how much does this harm economy?

    For most of my driving, I would be able to use EV mode almost completely, but I also do long runs (2-5 hours) where it could be useful to charge the battery so EV mode is available.

    Energy isn't free, so it wouldn't be a case of put 20 miles range into the battery, lose 20 mile range in terms of HV mode. My guess would be: put 20 miles range in the battery, use 50 miles worth of fuel, however this ignores the fact that the car would be driving between 50-70 MPH, so it wouldn't work out like that (I would guess 30 miles of fuel being used for 20 miles of charge).

    Is this approximation in the ballpark?

    I know it seems really picky, but obviously town driving (where the EV mode rocks), would mean significant savings vs. using the gas engine in the same situation, which itself wouldn't yield the best fuel economy.

    The reason for the question, is because the straight Prius is very good, but the Prime would have the advantage that for much of my driving, I would be able to use the EV mode a lot. The equation seems to be working in favor of the Prime (in the UK, it is about £2k more expensive than the Prius). Over the lifetime of the car, I can see the EV mode saving me that much in fuel, especially where I'm able to charge the car from the wall.

    The Prime also has several features the Prius doesn't, including great looks, pre-heat capability, etc.. that no level of Prius has, which help to offset the additional cost.

    Is there anything else I'm missing or is this the major difference?

    I have already driven a Prius for a the day (Excel spec) when my current car was in for service. It's just whether it is worth the extra to leap to a Prime?
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    May 11, 2005
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Plug-in Base

    force charge varies, and you can find real data here from users. check out threads from @john1701a and @bwilson4web . they have both done some testing.
    they can also give you the advantages over regular prius.
    the only negatives in my mind are the raised hatch floor, lack of spare and 4 seater. most owners don't seem to mind.
    all the best!(y)
    priuscatprimeguy and PiPDude like this.
  3. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
    Staff Member

    Oct 2, 2004
    2018 Prius Prime
    @GT4Prius and @Ferrarilover have Prius Primes/PHVs in the UK and should be able to help you out with UK-specific information.

    @bwilson4web did an experiment and I can't remember the speed exactly but I think it's in the realm of 50-60mph where CHG mode would be most effective (fuel efficient) for charging. Note CHG mode will charge up to 80% of the battery only.
  4. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web BMW i3 and Model 3

    Nov 25, 2005
    Huntsville AL
    2017 Prius Prime
    Prime Plus
    CHARGE mode has its uses but a question about how the UK encourages efficient cars both hybrids and electric vehicles (EV). For example, California allows EV cars to get a sticker for special car-pool lanes for a single driver. In effect, they can stay out or minimize time lost in traffic jams.

    Are there similar schemes in the UK and/or EU?

    Do they have EV only operation in some areas?

    Are there schemes allowing a plugin car access EV-only areas?

    You didn't ask but we found temperatures cooler than 10C (50F) can lead to unplanned engine operation. This winter the community have been mapping out what these are and how to minimize them. In contrast our BMW i3-REx has direct operation of the engine. Either car can run in EV mode but in cold weather the Prime needs to avoid cruise control and is sensitive to hill climbs and descents.

    Bob Wilson
    #4 bwilson4web, Mar 2, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2018
    priuscatprimeguy likes this.