Solar Roof and Nav - is it worth it?

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by amesintx, Aug 17, 2012.

  1. amesintx

    amesintx New Member

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    Hello,
    Newbie here. and Newbie with a prius. I have decided I will either get the base or the prius IV with the nav and solar roof package.

    My question is - for those with the solar roof and nav packages , Do you think it is worth it? I have read some reviews about the voice commands not being very good, but this is true across all cars. Please tell me any opinions on the roof or the nav!

    Thanks All!
     
  2. walterm

    walterm Active Member

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    I love the sunroof while driving both for the ability to open it for fresh air on nice days as well as the ability to just get more light in even when it's closed. And the solar-powered air circulation helps keep the interior cooler in the summer when it can get into the 80s and 90s with the sun beating down. Depending on your climate that may or not be an issue.
     
  3. amesintx

    amesintx New Member

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    Thank you for your reply!

    I forgot to add that I live in TX, the summer can get up to 115 degrees. Does the roof keep the interior down when it gets that hot? I heard it gets it down to the temp it is outside- so does that mean it's still as hot as 115?
    We have about 4 months in the summer where I think it will be used. But I do normally go from garage to garage. It will only be for trips out to grocery store, errand running. Home to work is garage to garage.
     
  4. stream

    stream Senior Member

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    The roof only circulates the air (bringing in outside air), it doesn't cool it.

    FWIW, I had a solar roof with similar features to the Prius in a car years ago, and wouldn't pay extra for it in a car again. Since most of the time you car is garaged, I really don't think it's worth it. Plus I never used to open sun roofs in previous cars.

    Regarding nav, I hardly ever use it. In 2010, the only way to get the touch screen was with nav, and being able to control the audio with touch screen (and BT audio streaming), plus back up camera and nav functionality was worth it for me.
     
  5. walterm

    walterm Active Member

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    Yes, since all it's doing is circulating outside air through it will not cool it lower than the outside temp. But I suspect when it's 115 outside a car interior gets much hotter than that with no air circulating and the sun beating in the windows.

    If it's that hot in the summer I suspect it would be useful during late spring and early fall too. Being able to park in a garage does help, since you can do that at work it eliminates the longest time cars are usually parked outside.

    I'd also advise investing in a windshield shade as well - to keep the sun from shining in the large windshield and adding heat needlessly. I also have a shade for the back window since it's quite horizontal and adds to the greenhouse effect.
     
  6. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    If your car is mostly garaged (during the day) then no, I don't think it is worth it.

    My car sits outside during the day at work and even on 106F days the car is comfortable upon entering due to the solar ventilation and the use of a quality sunshade. Conversely, my GenII would be baking hot in the same conditions and with the same sunshade but no solar roof.

    The usefulness of the sunroof is limited due to the glare produced by bright sun. When the roof is open it makes reading the dash display very difficult with sunglasses on and the sun beating onr your head gets annoying after awhile.

    In hindsight I wish I had purchased a PIP. lol
     
  7. WE0H

    WE0H Senior Member

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    I absolutely love my Solar Four. My car sits inside my garage more than it gets driven. When I am out and about, the solar roof is awesome and well worth every penny spent. The Nav/Audio system has software bugs currently but I suspect Toyota will keep trying with software updates until they get it right. I'd even suggest if you like a super cool looking car plus tight handling to go with the full Plus Performance Package. It looks incredible, drives awesome and only takes a little mpg hit. No big deal for such a cool looking car :) Here is a picture to ponder over :)

    [​IMG]

    Mike
     
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  8. RaZa

    RaZa Member

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    Sunroof: NO! Sunroofs are more trouble than they are ever worth. I will never buy another car with a sunroof again. Too many problems, not enough use.

    Nav: NO! This car has a nav that is just as bad as any other nav I've ever seen in a headunit. That is not saying much at all. I absolutely hate mine, and I have the "fancy" 7 inch hdd one. It's total garbage, and I'd be happier if it wasn't even there. Map updates will end up being few and far in-between, and very expensive. For nav I use a garmin I paid $110 for (nĂ¼vi 50LM) that is a way better, and friendlier nav with lifetime free map updates.
     
  9. Buzzhead

    Buzzhead Non-Interference w/ devel of pre-Warp civs

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    You also get three minutes of A/C (if the big battery is fully charged up), activated with your keyfob, when you're ready to drive off, to pre-cool the car, w/o having to have an after-market remote car starter installed. As F8L said above, you definitely want the sunshade for the windshield. I haven't heard any reviews on the sunshields for the sidewindows and rear window, though imagine they're fairly effective.
     
  10. miketee

    miketee Junior Member

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    Bought my Prius IV with sunroof package last week and loving it so far! Traded up from a 2010 III and was torn between the plug-in and the luxury features of the s/r IV. The base plug in is $32k and I would still have needed an outlet installed in front of my driveway. I don't have a garage so the car sits in the sun when I'm home. The solar panel does keep the air moving which makes getting into a hot car more bearable. Also, with the IV, you have the option of turning on the A/C and pre-cooling the car, provided you have enough battery charge. I tried this out yesterday and it works!

    As for the nav system, I have no complaints. It's great having the unit built in rather than fumbling with my old portable unit which has a smaller screen, is more difficult to program, and was always falling on the floor because the suction cup didn't stick very well. Although I've only used it a couple of times, this system is easy to program, seems accurate and even the default female voice doesn't annoy me (I turned off the nagging voice in my portable unit). The real test will be a nice long road trip later in the fall.

    The thing that swayed me towards the IV was the combination of luxury features and the cost, compared to the base plug-in. As I said, the base PIP is $32k plus tax, tags, etc., plus the cost of a charger or additional outlet and it has none of the upscale features of the IV. Also, the sunroof isn't available on either PIP model. I got the IV for $32 and change out the door so it wasn't a hard decision!

    As much as I'd love to have a plug-in, I think the technology needs to mature a little more...longer range batteries and a better charging infrastructure would help. If I could charge up at work, I would have definitely gone in that direction.
     
  11. RaZa

    RaZa Member

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    I can imagine the "cool factor" (no pun intented) of a remote ac button wears off pretty quickly. i would never think to go start the ac three minutes before i ever need to use the car. so far in the florida sun im getting by just fine with factory tint alone (i dont use a sunshade either. too much trouble for me). my first color choice was black, but then a white came available and i thought about the heat factor so i went with it. glad i did. the white with light grey interior never gets too hot.
     
  12. priusincc

    priusincc Member

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    I have the solar option and basic nav on the Three. In the week I've had it, I really like the solar roof feature, it keeps the interior relatively cool when sitting in the sun. It has been getting close to 100 degF here. The next step is a better window tint, to help with the heat. The basic nav is OK, but doesn't have the advanced features you would get on the Four.

    I could have lived with just the solar roof option on a Two, but Toyota forces you to go to a more expensive package.:sneaky: On the other hand, with the Three is nice with the three door smart key and back-up camera.
     
  13. David Beale

    David Beale Senior Member

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    Well, here in Edmonton, where it doesn't get hot (max temp I've ever seen is 42C) it's nice to have the fan running when the car is parked in the sun. It doesn't run unless the interior gets hot and the panel is not shaded.

    As far as the nav., I've read many complaints about it. When I've used it it seems to work just fine. If you need nav. having it built in is nice. It's also nice the screen is so big (I have the extra large screen in Pearl S). If you don't need nav. it's a waste of money.

    I do like the fact the entire roof is glass other than a small strip of painted metal. Makes it harder for birds to damage your paint. ;)
     
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  14. WE0H

    WE0H Senior Member

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    Why 2 callsigns?

    Mike
     
  15. ProximalSuns

    ProximalSuns Senior Member

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    Yes.

    1. Solar roof. Looks great, black roof and with roof open, the black deflector. Nice to have sun roof. The solar powered fan to keep car "room temp" actually works well.

    2. Nav. Getting Pandora, Bing and Traffic via the web makes the nav worth it. It has a lot of booooogus issues but those are the basics that make it worth it.
     
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  16. eseymour72

    eseymour72 Junior Member

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    Absolutely love my sunroof and have had a few non sunroof gen 3 owners ask to sit in my car because of the sunroof and they all said: " I wish I'd opted for the sunroof."

    I've also had no problems with mine either and it is used in very windy locations and the solar cooling part is a bonus.
     
  17. rebenson

    rebenson Member

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    My last two vehicles have had sunroofs ... well the mercury was a moon roof... No problems (except self inflicted leaving open) .

    I wasn't going to purchase it but I got a "great" deal on it and I am very happy. Heard all the "terrible " things about the nav and so far my 2010 has worked well... Though i wish you could upgrade the voice of nav. my 1st no name one had some very interesting voices and miss them.

    As for using the solar roof, always park in shade when available. I really noticed the difference when i had to use my wifes corolla (she was using prius) and parked it in one of the 100 plus days last month. I could not believe how hot the steering wheel was when i got in the car... it hurt and brought tears to my eyes...
     
  18. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    The NAV system works just fine for me. It's the horrible Entune system that drives me crazy. The constant disconnection or lack of any connection makes the system not even worth having. Toss in the nutty filing system for USB music and I'm ready too call it quits and just listen to the radio!
     
  19. Jason dinAlt

    Jason dinAlt Member

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    "Worth" is a personal decision. Restricting your answer set to those people who already decided that it was worth it to them will get you a biased answer.
    I admit I do not have either - because I decided they weren't worth spending my money on.
     
  20. katiesdad7

    katiesdad7 Member

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    I live here in Florida and LOVE the solar pkg. It keeps the inside of the car almost like the outside. And since we are the "sunshine" state it is always on. Plus I wear sneaker while driving and put my boots on when I get to work. With the solar pkg my car doesn't smell from my boots sitting in the car on the weekends.

    Now the Nav is nice to have. Mine works just fine. Plus I like the big screen for showing me what is on the Sirius.
     
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