Slow steering issue, Is it that bad or should we wait for updated fall cars ???

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by sluday, Jun 5, 2009.

  1. sluday

    sluday New Member

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    I read a few posts that the new 2010 prius steering is way to slow and takes forever to turn. Do new owners think it is that bad ? Is it worth the wait for the updated models to come this fall? By waiting you also get the ipod adapter and the new Toyota "onstar" system which is a bonus but raises the car price a bit. I think the extra cost will be offset by dealers giving discounts on cars this fall when the lots fill up.
     
  2. accordingly

    accordingly Member

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    "Slow steering" refers to cars having a high steering ratio- ie the number of degrees the steering wheel turns to turn the tires one degree. This is what causes you to have to turn the wheel around and around just to turn a corner. The updated steering tweaks coming in fall will not change the steering ratio, they will change the dampeners and the power steering assist slightly.

    The Prius V does have a faster steering ratio (in North America it is 17.4:1 in the Prius I-IV, and 14.6:1 in the Pruis V), that is the only way you are going to improve the issue of the high number of turns of the steering wheel.

    In my opinion, and I have not driven a V, the steering feel also suffers from a very high power steering boost. It is so easy to turn the steering that it doesn't feel like it is connected to anything. That's nice when you're parallel parking, but while driving I like to feel like my hands have some connection to the road. Coupled with the slow steering, this gives almost no road feel at all. There are literally computer game steering wheels which have better and more realistic road feel.

    The Pruis team said this about the steering:
    So to me it looks like more assist will be added which is not what I want. I will try to get an early model and then see if the upgrade is worth doing, but personally I think realistically it won't do much of anything and if it does may actually make it worse.

    Bottom line is the Prius was not designed to have good steering feel, so don't expect it to. Frankly, it is pretty bad and my main complaint with the car. But if you truly care about driving performance, you probably want to consider another car. The prius is not a performance vehicle, it is efficient with great utility.
     
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  3. sluday

    sluday New Member

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    I see. I thought the update would be a new steering rack to shorten the turn ratio. It seems that this is just a simple software upgrade any way.
     
  4. jon5506

    jon5506 New Member

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    sorry to say my 2010 has no problems, infact i found that it handle the corners real good even at 70:cheer2:
     
  5. dbacksfan

    dbacksfan Member

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    +1. When I was test drove mine, I purposely tested the responsiveness of the wheel. I'm not saying it handles like a BMW 3-series, but it's perfectly acceptable in my opinion.

     
  6. HTMLSpinnr

    HTMLSpinnr Super Moderator
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    Despite the steering ratio, actual handing is much improved over the 2004.
     
  7. keNbo

    keNbo New Member

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    It's not like you have to make a full revolution just to make a simple left turn, right? How bad can it be?

    Is this something that is more noticeable to Prius owners than to non-Prius owners?
     
  8. dc202

    dc202 Member

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    Perfectly fine with this ex-BMW owner. :rockon:
     
  9. Steve Cebu

    Steve Cebu New Member

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    Yes I noticed it and it's awful. The rest of the car is terrific, but the steering lacks. You have to drive it like a bus and I don't like that. The dealer says the car is too new and they have no info about any parts yet. I would want the new tighter steering rack installed. It will probably cost at least $1,000 but it would be worth it. My wife actually said to me yesterday... "So is this what they mean by numb steering?"
    The software will fix the ease of turning and I will want to try out a V to see how much tighter it is, but it the cost isn't more than $1,500 I'll have it done. 3.8 turns is just too much for me.
     
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