Why did you choose a Prius Prime over a fully EV vehicle?

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by Alex Waltz, Oct 17, 2020.

  1. Alex Waltz

    Alex Waltz New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2020
    2
    0
    0
    Location:
    Canada
    Vehicle:
    2020 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Base
    I keep reading that buying a hybrid car is a waste of money because you have to service both the gas engine and the electrical engine.

    With that in mind, why did you buy a Prius Prime instead of a pure EV vehicle?

    Thank you
     
  2. Bob Comer

    Bob Comer Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2010
    707
    448
    0
    Location:
    South Carolina low country
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Prime Advanced
    Range, pure and simple, there's no electric car that can go as far without stopping. Also, there's almost no charging infrastructure around here, so charging at home is the only option.
     
  3. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2004
    41,715
    13,256
    41
    Location:
    Canada
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Technology
    There really isn't much to service on the electrical side other than extra coolant for the inverter and checking the hybrid battery regularly to ensure nothing is awry.

    • Affordability (It's a really inexpensive way to experience EV driving, especially when factoring in the federal and provincial rebates)
    • Gateway - It's a way for me to see how I would live with an EV with a backup in case. I can see where I can charge and how far I can go per charge, check efficiency and make a better decision when I upgrade to a full EV the next time around
    • Efficiency - It's a Prius. It's efficient in both hybrid mode (easily 4.0L/100km in the city, usually lower) and EV mode (10.5-11.5kWh/100km in the summer. My record is 9.0kWh/100km and I've done over 60km on a charge on the Prime if you drive carefully). Even in the winter, I can get 25-35km on a charge with winter tyres on (Depends on heater use/outside temperature and how much snow is on the road - friction).
    • It's one of two (well maybe the only one since the Volt has been retired) that stays in EV mode down to -10°C with the heater on. Most other PHEVs kick the engine in somewhere between 0-10°C or whenever heating is required.
    • It has a very efficient vapour-injected heat pump (world's first) for the climate control. Whatever EV or PHEV you choose, make sure it has a heat pump. Some manufacturers only give you the heat pump on the fully loaded model.
    • Quick charging - 5.5 hours on 120V household and 2h10m on 240V Level 2. Because it only has a 3.3kW onboard charger, I don't have to worry about sharing any public charging station. Most stations are 6.6kW shared so if there are two cars charging, it splits the power (depending on what each car is pulling) so assuming both are not almost full, both would be pulling 3.3kW each and since that's the max power the Prime can take, it doesn't matter if the charging station is empty or if there's someone else there. On a car that can pull 6.6kW, you'll see your speed cut in half for the duration of the time the other vehicle is parked.

    Last summer on a road trip around Washington State, crossing the Cascades twice, my trip total was 3.4L/100km over 1,402km - it included 2 full public charges plus the initial home charge. Not bad for highway driving and crossing the mountain range twice! Less than 50 litres of fuel for the entire trip (Gas tank is 43 litres)

    I don't know any car that can give me that combination of road trip and city efficiency.
     
  4. schja01

    schja01 One of very few in Chicagoland

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2005
    1,317
    902
    0
    Location:
    Chicagoland
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius
    Model:
    Prime Advanced
    Range anxiety pure and simple. 99% of my day to day driving is in EV mode and ICE for trips. I don’t use public chargers.
     
  5. bluespruce

    bluespruce Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2020
    56
    42
    0
    Location:
    New England
    Vehicle:
    2020 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Limited
    I am going to use my prius prime to go to the mountains. Often its 225 miles one way with no place to recharge. In fact most of New England you can not recharge so for now only a hybrid car will work.
     
    kenoarto and Clint3200 like this.
  6. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2015
    7,288
    5,817
    0
    Location:
    New England
    Vehicle:
    2020 Prius Prime
    Model:
    LE
    When the hybrid car cost was $3-4K higher than the same model with just a gas engine, I felt it was not worth the extra money. That would be even more pronounced now that the gas cost is so much lower. But for most hybrid cars, the price premium over the ICE car no longer exists. And for Prius Prime with incentives and rebates, the price was much less than regular hybrid or ICE cars.

    Now, with the BEVs that was not the case. I could not find a new BEV in the price range I have paid for my PP. Even if I did find some that come close to the price range, lack of charge station and inconvenience of long refueling time on a road would have made any BEV I purchase to be strictly a short-range daily commuter. So, until BEV becomes more popular and sub-$20K daily drive models become abundant, I will not likely replacing my PP.

    As for the service, today's hybrids, especially Toyota hybrids need no more service than regular gas cars. It still needs a few more extra services than BEV, but at least Toyota hybrid has a long track record of proven reliability. I couldn't say that for any BEV at this point, not yet anyway.
     
    #6 Salamander_King, Oct 17, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2020
  7. AldoON

    AldoON Junior Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2020
    77
    52
    0
    Location:
    Milton, ON
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Upgrade
    Also, as far as service goes, I'm not convinced the Prime is at a disadvantage to other cars.

    Yes, you have an electric motor and an ICE but they each get used as much as possible in their optimal conditions.

    In the end, I think it will mean less wear... The system as a whole should last longer than one with just an ICE or a fully electric car. Time will tell!
     
    Tips and Clint3200 like this.
  8. m8547

    m8547 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2018
    866
    566
    0
    Location:
    Colorado
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Prime Plus
    I bought the Prime to use as a daily driver instead of my SUV that gets 17mpg. I can't afford a Tesla, so the other option was an EV with around 100 miles of range and poor charging infrastructure. I made a histogram of my typical destinations and their round trip distances, and from that I calculated that with the combination of Prius Prime and SUV, I'll use less gas than with an EV and SUV, because I can use the Prime for more long trips than a 100-ish mile range EV. The Prime is also cheaper upfront than any new EV (or was at the time I bought it). One of my goals was to minimize transportation cost (the other was to minimize gas usage), and by my calculations the Prime might be the cheapest new car to drive (making some assumptions about depreciation and other costs). I think it worked out to about $0.28 a mile. An inexpensive used sedan would be around $0.24 a mile, but I am willing to pay an extra 4 cents a mile for the luxury and safety features of a new car. I can't remember the price per mile for an EV, but my SUV costs me more than $0.50 a mile. If those numbers seem high, it's because most of the cost is depreciation.

    I use the Prime for even more trips than I expected, and I use EV mode more than I expected, so it's been a win. Apparently I could even sell it for what I paid for it after tax credits, so depreciation has been $0. And the only maintenance I've paid for is tires.
     
    Tips, Clint3200 and AldoON like this.
  9. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2006
    15,947
    7,390
    0
    Location:
    eastern Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    Well, with the various incentives, a Prime can be had for less than a Prius. Then the available BEVs and public charging infrastructure just don't work for everyone.
    A PHEV compared to a BEV will have a higher maintenance cost because of the engine. That system has a heavier maintenance load than the electric one.

    Well, the electric side is getting used no matter the drive mode. It is a hybrid after all. ;) The inverter, battery, and M/G1 are running with the engine. Even when it isn't providing propulsion or braking, M/G2 is spinning on its bearings.
     
    #9 Trollbait, Oct 17, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2020
    AldoON likes this.
  10. The Big Sleaze

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2019
    164
    41
    0
    Location:
    'frisco
    Vehicle:
    2020 Prius
    Model:
    Two Eco
    Why did you choose a Prius Prime over a fully EV vehicle?
    For me it was "Why buy Prime over Hybrid or newer A/T?"
    a) was doing 3hrs in bumper to bumber traffic and wanted a car that could go EV and not idle motor for 3 hrs a day.
    b)not much interested in lugging around a dirty cord (and I'm a construction worker LOL) and trying to find place to plug in and worry about $400 cord being stolen (I work in SF mostly, where street crime is way of life).
    c) didn't want to be tied down to charging regime, need to be able to gas up in hinterland and not look back. Maybe in 10yrs there will be standard QUIK SWAP big batts for EV cars where you pull into gas station stall and put Credit Card in and a robot swaps out your big batt for reasonable fee and you are back at 100% in 2 mins.
     
    pjm877, kenoarto and Clint3200 like this.
  11. Washingtonian

    Washingtonian Active Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2017
    536
    471
    0
    Location:
    Western Washington
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Plug-in Advanced
    I was driving a manual transmission Miata as a daily driver. Got stuck in a couple of two-hour backups on the interstate and actually got a charley horse from braking and shifting, so decided to get a newer car that my wife could also drive. Thought about an EV, but couldn't afford a Tesla, didn't like the Leaf and didn't trust GM, but liked what I read about the PP and our experience with Toyota. Test drove one and bought it that day. Found that I really enjoy EV driving, so it has been an enabler for my next car which will either be a Tesla or the RAV4 Prime.
     
    bluespruce likes this.
  12. bluespruce

    bluespruce Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2020
    56
    42
    0
    Location:
    New England
    Vehicle:
    2020 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Limited
    I too have a manual 6 speed fun car and got the Prius Prime as a gateway drug to the future which will be all electric. It will also allow me to keep my manual car longer I think. It will be an antique soon.
     
  13. Northerner

    Northerner Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2020
    84
    84
    0
    Location:
    Midwest
    Vehicle:
    2020 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Limited
    I occasionally need to make a long trip but mostly drive under 25 miles/day. I also am efficiency minded - love getting high mileage whether energy comes from gas or electricity. As I read through the specs, the PP emerged as the clear winner - for now. That said, our next car that we’ll buy (alongside of the Prius Prime) will be all electric.
     
    Tips likes this.
  14. JMalmsteen

    JMalmsteen I love my Prius!

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2008
    235
    223
    0
    Location:
    Long Island, NY/Lancaster, PA
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Plug-in Advanced
    Our Priuses have been so reliable that we will always own at least one Prius. That said, I would buy a Tesla, but I can't even get a price for a drive unit or battery. The only thing to go by are Elon's tweets which mean nothing. The service center has no figure for either.
     
    Tips likes this.
  15. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2009
    14,168
    7,687
    90
    Location:
    Western Washington
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Not a PHEV owner yet, but am looking at them instead of a BEV due to much of our travels being away from the well developed charging networks. While charging of some sort is essentially always available, adequate fast-enough charging is still significantly less so when far away from the Interstate Highway system.

    When not traveling, the Prius Prime has enough EV range to cover a large portion of our local driving, the RAV4 Prime would cover nearly all of it.

    I currently have some excess solar PV capacity, and since the incentive program expired on June 30th, the excess is now a free gift to the utility. Eventually as the system ages and shading trees grow, there won't be any excess. But until then, a plug-in vehicle would give me some free-fuel miles, though I'd also end up adding more solar capacity to better supply any plug-in.

    If I was still commuting to employment, I probably would have gone full-EV for a commuter car about the time I installed the solar system, and would have sized the solar to include that purpose. If the spouse ever replaces her daily driver -- a stick shift '89 Integra -- I'll think about such an EV again. But I'll probably need to pry the shift knob from her cold dead hands. At least the household's newest vehicle, a '14 Forester, is also stick.
     
    #15 fuzzy1, Oct 18, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2020
    Tips likes this.
  16. JMalmsteen

    JMalmsteen I love my Prius!

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2008
    235
    223
    0
    Location:
    Long Island, NY/Lancaster, PA
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Plug-in Advanced
    I love the Prime but we have three manual cars that are awesome (Vette, WRX, Challenger). You can't replace the fun of shifting gears. The Tesla S did nothing for me (the performance).
     
    bluespruce likes this.
  17. phanniepak

    phanniepak Junior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2019
    7
    0
    5
    Location:
    Irvine, CA
    Vehicle:
    2020 Prius Prime
    Model:
    XLE
    Got the Prime because of available tax credit, longest range of PHEVs, toyota proven reliability and quality control. The other ride is a V8 ISF, needed something 80-90% of the time to soothe the wallet on gas :LOL:
     
  18. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2004
    41,715
    13,256
    41
    Location:
    Canada
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Technology
    Ooh IS-F!
     
  19. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2016
    8,717
    10,641
    0
    Location:
    Tampa, FL
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Prime Premium
    Simple decision for us. An EV won't take us where we often need to go.

    But that doesn't rule out one for a daily driver in the future.
     
  20. Diemaster

    Diemaster Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2017
    260
    239
    2
    Location:
    so. cal
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Prime Advanced
    As said before, range primarily. I can drive in EV around town for errands etc. Once I went to Prescott AZ; about a 400 mile trip one way and got 62.7MPG average. Cost me ~$65 in gas to go ~800 miles round trip (y).
     
    jerrymildred and pghyndman like this.
Loading...