Would YOU consider a 2016?

Discussion in 'Gen 4 Prius Main Forum' started by Chris HV, Jan 21, 2023.

  1. Chris HV

    Chris HV Member

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    Long story short, my beloved Prius Gen3 got totaled and I'm looking for a Gen4.
    My policy has long been to never buy a "first year" car, which is why I had originally thought of starting my searches at Year 2017. Having been once royally screwed by an individual seller, I typically prefer to buy a low-ish miles car from a reputable dealer, even though I am very aware of the markups.
    FWIW I systematically stay away from rentals, commercial use, government cars, cars from faraway states and such, or cars without a free Carfax (on a side note, Cargurus is still awful and Autocheck is nearly useless... even worse than it was 4 years ago which I didn't think was possible. LOL.)
    Unfortunately all the 2017+ Prii I've been looking at over the last month have been above my budget and contrary to some recent internet lore, the price of used cars has definitely not been "tumbling", at least not in my region.
    I've read every relevant previous post I could find on the subject (some of them are just outstanding and so incredibly helpful !)
    Still, I'm not sure if there was any serious issue or red flag reported on that first year Gen4. Did I miss anything?
    Would YOU consider a 2016?
     
  2. MalachyNG

    MalachyNG Active Member

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    I bought a 2016 Prius Four used in 2019. It didn't give me any trouble related to being a first year car. Hopefully whatever one you find has had any needed recalls done (I think there was a software update for parking sensors so they don't slam on the brakes in automatic car washes and a fix for the safety connect to keep the GPS accurate). The other issue I know of but didn't experience was coolant leaking into the heat exchanger. There's a TSB out about it but not a recall.

    The only goofy thing I noticed was no way to change from miles to kilometers. They fixed it with later runs and the 2017 but never sent a software update to fix it or maybe it was a hardware oversight.

    You may want to consider a used Prius Prime. They may be getting the used EV tax credit. I love mine and by what I've seen here they are just as rock solid as the regular Prius. And still gets better mpg even if you don't plug it in.
     
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  3. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    toyota got gen 4 mostly right from the get go. a few very minor things on 2016, i wouldn't hesitate to buy one.
     
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  4. Chris HV

    Chris HV Member

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    Thanks!

    Great to know and if anyone was the TSB number please share so that I may add this to my list of questions to the sellers.

    To be frank, I had ruled out the Prime based on a conversation I had at the grocery store a few weeks back with a guy I worked a long time ago. He had bought a Prime and he loves the car with the exception of the headlights. Like me he drives quite a bit at night and he told me that he had hit a deer due to the "headlight coverage being just awful." Now, thinking back on it, could it be that maybe they were poorly adjusted? Also, I never saw the car but I just read Tideland's awesome posts and I'm wondering if all the Prime models have the same headlight design.

    Also, great thought about the used EV tax credit. I will look into that. Quick question: technically, how does the Prime get better mpg even if you don't plug it in? Bigger hybrid batt?

    Lastly, doesn't the Prime cost more in insurance given all the extra whizbang tech?
     
  5. MalachyNG

    MalachyNG Active Member

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    tideland has a pretty full list of every recall and tsb for gen 4. A lot of it I never heard of so it was probably first year fixes that yours will probably already have if you're buying a 2016 from a dealership All Known Gen 4 Prius Recalls/Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs) | PriusChat


    I live in deer country and from November to March I'm driving to work and back in the dark and have no complaints about the headlights other than the auto highbeams turn off below 19mph so if I slow down for a deer that's annoying when trying to check if there are more behind it. I would like to say they are better than what my 2016 Prius had and way better than my 2013 prius (that kept burning out bulbs for some reason). The Prime has LED headlights and there's a good bright square section straight ahead that pretty much covers the road with the high beams on where I guess they overlap? The sides are OK, not great, but pretty good.

    I'm no engineer so I can't be sure but I think it's because of the bigger battery and also the Prime can use both MG motors to assist with driving (somebody more knowledgeable can correct me or elaborate on how that works). I've had it regen a mile or 2 of EV range above the normal hybrid capacity when braking to a stop sign on a 55mph road and then another mile or 2 when braking to turn off a 55mph road down a slight hill to a side road leading to my house. Usually I'm in hybrid mode the whole way home if I can't charge at work.

    Prime has all of the same tech whizbang as the regular prius. Actually the base and mid trims (Plus/LE, XLE/Premium) have slightly less tech than the regular hybrid prius. They don't have parking sensors or blind spot monitor, even as options. Only the Limited/Advanced has all of that.

    My insurance didn't go up because of the Prime. It probably went up because of inflation and the 2016 having 3 claims in 2 years (the last from a deer unaliving itself with it and totaling it in the process.)
     
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  6. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Patron saint of newly poured sidewalks

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    Not sure if they've been mentioned, couple of thoughts regarding the 2016's:

    1. There's no way to switch a US spec car to kmh. (fixed in later year, 2017?)
    2. It has the paper element in permanent housing still. (later years, maybe starting partway through model year 2017, switched to spin-on.)
     
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  7. MalachyNG

    MalachyNG Active Member

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    I did mention it but I'm curious, what about Canadian 2016s. They had a way to switch?

    Tangent: my 2013 had a physical mph-kph button. On my 2022 Prime its in the settings menu in the mfd above the dash. I'm surprised they never added that to the 2016.

    a paper element? Is this a part or a filter?
     
  8. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Patron saint of newly poured sidewalks

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    AFAIK they had the same problem, in reverse.

    Same here, physical button*. Our 2010 Touring doesn't even have a touch-screen, which I like.

    * Go back 20~30 years, and everyone would be scratching their heads, over "physical button". As opposed to "virtual button" I guess.
     
  9. Chris HV

    Chris HV Member

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    Thanks so much Malachy, I've now added the Prime to my searches. It looks as though with a bit of luck, I might be able to find one that will cost me less than an equivalent normal Prius after credit. Not crazy about the huge touch screen (I need the driver power seat) but I will adjust if needed.

    I've started reading tons of post on the PP forums and my head is spinning... LOL.

    About those evil deer, I have accidentally found a great way of avoiding collisions but I should probably start a new thread with that. Problem is, I'm not seeing a "general" subforum that would benefit the most people. Suggestions welcome!
     
  10. Chris HV

    Chris HV Member

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    Thanks.

    No biggie for me about the mph/kmh switch but I find it pretty incredible that all our Gen3 cars had it... BTW years ago we owned a Chrysler minivan that would give us gas mileage in both MPG and L/100 at the simple touch of a button. The conversion is a total PITA and since I know lots of people overseas I just loved that feature.

    Are you saying that Toyota (finally) went back to a spin-on oil filter on all Prius versions starting with 2017 models?
     
  11. jdenenberg

    jdenenberg EE Professor

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    My 2016 model 3 was among the earliest built and it was a trouble free, great car (until the kamikaze deer).

    JeffD
     
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  12. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Patron saint of newly poured sidewalks

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    Yes. “Sometime” in 2017 model year IIRC.
     
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