Featured Toyota Prius sales have tanked, 4 reasons why

Discussion in 'Prius, Hybrid, EV and Alt-Fuel News' started by Ashlem, Feb 9, 2018.

  1. Ashlem

    Ashlem Senior Member

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    Funny how people say that stuff, but then when gas prices suddenly jump up say, 25 cents overnight, you'll often see a long convoy of trucks and SUV's driving on the right side of the freeway, all puttering along at 50-55 mph. I feel like I'm the one speeding doing my normal 55-60 mph, and in the case of my Chevy Volt, not using a drop of gas either unless it's really cold out or the engine runs for a few minutes because I haven't used it in 6 weeks.

    It reminds me of my stepbrother, who complains about gas prices regularly because his daily driver is a Toyota Tundra. When those hurricanes hit back in summer/fall 2017, he sure felt that pain, and his wife even got mad at him because she drives a Honda CRV, which isn't exactly saving that much more gas vs the Tundra. And no, he doesn't go fishing, camping, or hauling stuff from home improvement stores where having a truck would be justified. He just likes big vehicles.

    Yet when I told him to try out a Prius and a Volt, he seemed to balk at them, and couldn't seem to get past the concept that "dead engine = dead car, therefore Prius/Volt shutting off engine at stoplights = car is dead". I even let him borrow my Volt for a few days, and he still can't seem to accept it as an alternative. It also irked me that he had a plug in his garage, but didn't plug it in, so let the charge run out and ran it on gas.

    Yet when I tell him I spend about $40 in electricity a month to drive it to work and back, he doesn't believe me either. And now that I also have solar panels, I'm literally producing power for my car and cutting out Big Oil and OPEC from gouging my wallet all the time, not to mention King Coal.

    The point I'm making here is, multiply his attitude by a few tens or hundreds of million other people. Many have been sold on the idea that they have to have a big vehicle, and that anything less is just simply uncool, if car commercials where people are seen smiling while driving big trucks and SUV's are anything to go by. The Prius gets bashed regularly as a dorky nerd mobile that only grandmas drive, hence why you'll never see the cool kids talking about wanting one. Hopefully electric cars change their minds though, once their major issues are resolved, namely cost and lack of charging stations.

    Like others have mentioned here, it's only when you keep hitting them in the pocketbook that they'll finally change their ways, at least when it comes to buying a high mpg vs low mpg vehicle.
     
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    my brother has a merc 500sl, has two seats and gets around 10mpg. my father pays for his gas though.
     
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  3. pilotgrrl

    pilotgrrl Senior Member

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    Toyota needs to put the cool back in the Prius, as mentioned above.

    They also need to mainstream some features, like the infotainment system, and possibly pick up some social influencers.

    It seems Toyotas are considered old people's cars by some. No wow in the brand for them. There was an attempt to capture a younger demographic with Scion, but it didn't pan out, for a number of reasons:

    Five Reasons: Why Did Scion Fail?

    "Scion claims that over its nearly 13 years and more than a million vehicle sales, 50 percent of its buyers have been under the age of 35; but they’ve been skewing a lot older at times in more recent years."

    There were technical issues, too.

    http://www.autoguide.com/auto-news/2016/02/the-5-reasons-scion-is-dead.html

    Anyway, despite all the cool (to me) features added, both standard and optional, between my Gen 2 and my Gen 4, I think it's neat.

    But, they have some very smart, talented people that need to push the envelope. Wouldn't you like to be part of focus groups at the mothership in Plano and let the powers that be know what you think they can do to make Prius the coolest car again?

    I know I would.

    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  4. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    i think they need input from non owners.
     
  5. Spindifferent

    Spindifferent Member

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  6. William Redoubt

    William Redoubt Senior Member

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    How many times are they going to dust off this story and reprint it with minor updates? What does the word, "tanked," even mean? How do Prius sales compare to the model size in the overall market. I call horse pucky.

    I gas up in Ehrenberg, AZ every week. This week, gas was $2.45. Six miles away in Blythe, CA gas is $3.69 for the same brand. Similar prices all the way to LA. It's not fun to be one of Jerry's kids.
     
    #26 William Redoubt, Feb 9, 2018
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 11, 2018
  7. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

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    I liked my first Prius. I have a saying that if a car treats you right buy another one. I took my own advice.

    We talked about buying a Subaru but didn't even go look at one. We really don't spend much on gas each month.

    In the summer we buy more gas for my wife's zero turn mowere than for the Prius.
     
  8. iplug

    iplug Senior Member

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    To get a little philosophical, I see the demise of the Liftback Prius as the aging of an old wise person.

    If it has done its job well, it lives on in others and the generations ahead build on the wisdom of the sage(s). In its nascent age, this intrepid Prius was in a class of its own; but hybrid technology and efficiencies spread throughout the Toyota lineup and to others. Then pushing the envelope required further evolution. It may not have been Toyota who carried the torch forward in full force, but the spirit continued on in the Plug-ins and BEVs we see today.

    Death to the Prius. Long live the Prius.

    How's that?
     
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  9. egg_salad

    egg_salad Active Member

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    I bought my Prius because I wanted a Toyota with a hatch/liftback. If there had been a gas car in my price range, I would have bought it. I really don't drive enough to realize significant hybrid benefits.
     
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  10. RCO

    RCO Senior Member

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    I'd vote for you on that platform.

    You drive a Prius, you get a benefit!
     
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  11. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

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    They reviewed an XLE hybrid. The LE hybrid actually has the higher rating.
     
  12. Bill the Engineer

    Bill the Engineer Senior Member

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    Toyota is a victim of their own success. Lots of people are in my situation and only replace their cars when the old one wears out, not because the new one is pretty. My daily drivers are a 2010 Prius and a 2004 Prius, both bought new. Both are going strong with no issues. Why would I replace them?
     
  13. egg_salad

    egg_salad Active Member

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    Not really. Given my low annual mileage, the amount of money a Prius saves me in gas is not even offset by how much lower the cost of insurance would be on the same model year Corolla. But the Corolla didn't exist with a hatch at that time.
     
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  14. MelonPrius

    MelonPrius Active Member

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    That's amazing, thx for the info. I didn't realize you could get a Camry with an EPA estimate of what I'm currently getting with my Prius. As a big fan of the Camry, I guess I'll be looking for a used LE in a few years. And yeah, this will hurt Prius sales.
     
  15. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    Sales growth of Camry hybrid and Prius Prime is a win-win.

    Toyota wants to phase out traditional vehicles.
     
  16. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

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    I did zero shopping and now I realize I was out of touch with what was going on in the hybrid market when I bought my new car in November. I would have bought the Prime but my wife said no. She felt familiar with another Prius and like a lot of people change bothers them.

    It's funny how some people are, they go to the same dealer, and the same salesman, buy the same car they are trading in and buy the same color. How boring is that. lol

    People see their new car and think it's the old one.
     
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  17. mikefocke

    mikefocke Prius v Three 2012, Avalon 2011

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    About 4 months ago I started to think I needed to look for a new vehicle to replace mine that had suddenly and repeatedly become undependable. I like my Toyota dealer's service. Not his new car pricing. (SET distributor and I've bought out of state before.) So I went to the competing brand dealer across the street and looked at his car and asked some questions whose answers were valuable to me. Did they provide a courtesy car or a ride to my development that is 2 miles away and on the same street at 55MPH? No. How are maps updated? Cost? And then I looked on a web forum devoted to the model I might have been interested in and was aghast at the number and seriousness of the complaints about the specific engine I would have bought (1.5L, DFI, Turbo).

    And then my Toyota dealer fixed my uncommon (according to searches on this forum) problem in a 5+ year old car and at zero cost to me because of a lifetime power train warranty. And my 42k miles car suddenly became dependable.

    So there are reasons why I have loyalty. Not blind, I would hope. But rooted in experiences that I value. And when I get my $35 oil change and tire rotation and tire pressure adjustment, I drop the car off the day before my appointment and get a ride back to my house. And pick it up the next day and life is good.

    Now I'm waiting for the new RAV4h to see what it is like. I like low emissions, I like 40+ mpg not for cost so much but for the infrequent fill-ups when I'm shuttling around town. I go sometimes a month without stopping at a gas station except to buy a lottery ticket. When it comes in I'll see what it is like and if it meets my then current perception of my wants and needs. And what the early buyer's experiences have been. And I'll compare their prices and beat them down and remind them I can get it for cheaper and have done that and they will have to make their price acceptable to me or I'll go out of state. And if I do, they will service it just as they do for my wife's car bought out of state because they wouldn't be price competitive.

    The folks I see in the dealership service area trend older (not older than me but still older). But then I don't go in before or after work hours, I'm retired and can pick a convenient to me time to visit.
     
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  18. RRxing

    RRxing Senior Member

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    With the long established hybrid design and reliability, I'll stick with Toyota for now, be it the Prius or any other offering...
     
  19. LasVegasaurusRex

    LasVegasaurusRex Active Member

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    Agreed on most points already discussed, but I have two to add:

    1) there is still the "Prius stigma." Corolla drivers aren't getting purposefully cut off, coal rolled, etc.

    2) stiff competition from Hyundai
     
  20. farmecologist

    farmecologist Senior Member

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    Has anyone seen any Ioniq's out there? I have not. However, I have seen quite a few Gen4 Prius around here.
     
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