Prius Prime Comfort Long Distance

Discussion in 'Gen 4 Prius Main Forum' started by big daddy russ, Feb 14, 2017.

  1. big daddy russ

    big daddy russ New Member

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    Don't actually own a Prius (or any hybrid) right now, but I wanted to come to the experts for recommendations. I'm in the market for a new car and would like to go with a Prius Prime if at all possible. In my five-minute test drive the other day, it seemed OK, but five minutes is far different than an hour and a half behind the wheel.

    A little background. Comfort is far and away my single biggest concern. I blew out three discs in my back seven years ago and can't drive just any car. Traded in my '06 Toyota Matrix (horrible seats, noisy interior, absolutely awful ride, but 28 MPG and had a ton of room inside) for a Volvo S80. I put 30k-40k miles/year on my car and love the idea of the (relatively) inexpensive car that gets 50 MPG here in Houston. Love my Volvo, but they aren't cheap to buy, aren't cheap to repair, and with 380k miles on mine, it's only a matter of time before something major like an engine or transmission goes out.

    Surprisingly, my wife's 2014 4Runner Trail Edition 4x4 is easy on my back. Every bit as easy as my dad's '07 Buick Lucerne. I love Toyota's dependability, would love to own a hybrid for reasons that go beyond just fuel savings, and like that I can get a loaded-out model for $33k.

    For reference, here are my thresholds and where I draw the line on ride comfort:

    Legitimately comfy
    1. 2007 Volvo S80
    2. 2006 Volvo S60
    3a. 2007 Buick Lucerne
    3b. Previous-generation Toyota Avalons I've rented for work at various times
    4. 2014 4Runner Trail
    __________________________
    Comfy enough, but still wears me down
    5. 2014 Toyota Camry (kind of borderline--I could do this as a daily driver if push came to shove)
    6. 2013 Tahoe
    7. 2003 Avalanche
    8. 2012 Honda Accord
    __________________________
    Couldn't do it if I tried
    9. GMC Sierra 1500
    10. 2006 Toyota Matrix


    Would I be OK? Is this a pipe dream for me?
     
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    prime is probably at the bottom of the list. you'll get varying answers, but it's a big investment to make, taking someone's word for it.
    even my wife's hycam gets tiresome on a long trip, and it's much more comfortable than prius.
     
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  3. big daddy russ

    big daddy russ New Member

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    Thanks for the quick reply. Was hoping this wouldn't be the case.

    Anyone have experience with a new Avalon hybrid? Wasn't planning on going that route (would rather save the money), but it checks in $6k cheaper than a new S90 and gets far better city mileage.
     
  4. alanclarkeau

    alanclarkeau Senior Member

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    Mine is a PRIUS Gen 4 and we don't have PRIME here - from what it looks like, the PRIME has different seats. I don't find the PRIUS Gen 4 anything special, though I don't have any problem with them.

    Have you thought about hiring one for the weekend - or asking the dealer for a longer test-drive?
     
  5. krmcg

    krmcg Lowered Blizzard Pearl Beauty

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    I have an Avalon hybrid and a gen 4 Prius. The Avalon has far superior comfort in ride and seats, and more powerful. The Prius is more responsive and more fun to drive.
     
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  6. AK Prius Nut

    AK Prius Nut Junior Member

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    Don't own a prime. But we have a 2016 Prius 4 package that similarly equipped.It has comfy power seats and lumbar support. My suggestion would be to see if you can rent a Prius from Toyota dealership nearby for a weekend. Most of them have Prius in their rental fleets. Even though it might be a lower package it would still give you an idea. The 4 generation has much improved seats overall.


    iPhone ?
     
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  7. big daddy russ

    big daddy russ New Member

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    I might check into a longer test drive. Drive it to the edge of my sales territory (about an hour and a half from western tip to northern tip of Houston metro area) and back to see how I hold up. Thanks for the recommendation.

    krmcg, I'll also look into the Avalon hybrid if that doesn't work out. Might be the right compromise for me.
     
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  8. alanclarkeau

    alanclarkeau Senior Member

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    You also have a RAVE4 Hybrid over in USA (we only get petrol and diesel), and I know at least one person who bought one because the seats suited her - and she found it easier to get into than a car which was lower.
     
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  9. Nougatti

    Nougatti Member

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    Get a used Lexus if money's in the way for getting a new one
    They really aren't that expensive.
    The CT200h even has the same drivetrain as the gen3 Prius.

    All I know is that my 2003 Lexus IS is ages more comfortable on long trips than my 2012 PiP!


    iPhone ?
     
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  10. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    prius, yaris, matrix, corolla, camry, avalon, lexus. seats pretty much fall in in line.
     
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  11. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    The Gen 4 Prius and Prius Prime use the same front seats and have been redesigned from the previous generation. Supposedly, the designer has a bad back so the seat should be fairly comfortable. The only thing is that it sits a bit lower to the ground than previous generation Prius. If that's ok for you to get in/out, then I would take a Prime on a longer journey.

    The Avalon has larger seats cause it's a larger car. From what I can remember, it's reasonably comfortable.
     
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  12. big daddy russ

    big daddy russ New Member

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    Thanks for the recommendations, everyone. I picked a fully-charged Prius Prime up for an extended test drive last night. I'll give it a shot today.
     
  13. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    that's great! who had one?
     
  14. thatoneraccoon

    thatoneraccoon Active Member

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    Awesome! Congrats!
    Hopefully the seats work out for you. I can say they are more comfortable than my gen1 Chevy volt. I haven't spent more than 2 hours drive in my Prime yet, but it's been great so far.

    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  15. 'LectroFuel

    'LectroFuel Senior Member

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    I've spent a long time in a 2017 Avalon Hybrid Limited and it is extremely comfortable. The seats have many ways of adjusting, like up and down, in and out lumbar and thigh extensions. The car handles almost like a boat, but the ride is very floaty and you can't feel most of the bumps. I almost got it over the Prius, but I didn't like the "old man" reputation the past generations have.:LOL: All trims have standard TSS-P for 2017.

    The 4th gen SofTex seats are a little better than my 2nd gen cloth seats(which isn't saying much). The Avalon seats are different. They are actual leather (cooled on limited :)) and there is a wide range of adjustments. I felt like the lumbar support on the Avalon had more adjustability and was more flexible.
     
  16. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

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    Stay away from the cloth seats in the lower trims of Gen 4. They are not comfortable on long trips. Some people like the newer Softex seats, though.
     
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  17. Vike

    Vike Active Member

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    This isn't directly responsive, but bear with me, this is worth reading. A co-worker of mine commuted >1hr each way for years in a Gen2 Prius before it got wrecked and he was forced to lease a Gen3 just months before the Gen4 came out. He likes the Gen3 well enough, but the main point is that his wife's car is an Avalon Hybrid (generation before current model), so he spends a lot of time in that as well. He is absolutely adamant in his affection for that Avalon, and though he didn't want to pay for two of them, it is definitely their preferred road trip vehicle. The new generation model is even better, as much a Lexus ES in Toyo clothing as ever (though I'm sure you've already been told that a few times).

    Given your requirements, I don't think the extra MPG would be worth the less comfortable accommodations in the Gen4 Prius. The Prius is a fine car, but let's be real - the Avalon Hybrid is an extraordinarily capacious and comfortable boulevard prowler with ridiculously good MPG for that level of luxury, and an incomparably better value than any Volvo approaching its comfort and quiet. The Prius is the more nimble handler, but that doesn't sound at the top of your priorities, and the Avalon Hybrid is safely competent with plenty of get up and go. At minimum you owe yourself a long test drive to compare with that long test of the Prius you're planning.
     
  18. alanclarkeau

    alanclarkeau Senior Member

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    Not sure if it affects you, but the Avalon hasn't got the same flexibility as the PRIUS or PRIME with boot/hatch/trunk space - the back seat won't fold down so long items can't be accommodated. But I think it will take a towing pack.
     
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  19. big daddy russ

    big daddy russ New Member

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    The local Toyota dealership where I bought my wife's car had a demo on hand.

    It's a sweet little car, but unfortunately I'm gonna have to upgrade. The ride killed me.

    I went to the Lexus dealership after turning the Prius in. Apparently the LS isn't offered in a hybrid, but I got to look at an ES hybrid (which was still far less-expensive than the Volvo). After everything, I'm leaning back to the Avalon. Same money and fuel economy as the ES for more car.

    Thanks for the help, everyone.
     
    #19 big daddy russ, Feb 17, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2017
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  20. big daddy russ

    big daddy russ New Member

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    This is exactly where I wound up. I can't sacrifice comfort, but it doesn't make sense to buy a luxury car because of the miles I drive. The Avalon seems to hit that sweet spot. Sounds like I can get one in the high-$30k's and it returns 40 MPG and are is true full size car (S90 is a midsize--competes against BMW 5 Series, Mercedes E Class, etc.).
     
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