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Mike Stevens | May, 22 2012 | 1 Comment


Toyota's people-moving Prius v hybrid is now on sale in Australia, growing the local Prius family to three models and giving families a new option in the seven-seater market.

Starting from $35,990 (plus on-roads), the Prius v undercuts a number of existing seven-seat models, although most are high-riding SUV offerings.

Toyota is also trumpeting the Prius v as the only seven-seat hybrid offered in Australia, and the first local Toyota to feature a lithium-ion battery pack.


Mechanical Package

Power for the Prius V is provided by the familiar hybrid-drive 1.8 litre Atkinson-cycle petrol engine, mated to an electric motor and an electronically-controlled CVT automatic transmission.

While the petrol engine's power is rated at 73kW and 142Nm, the addition of the electric motor brings total system output to 100kW.

Toyota claims a combined-cycle fuel consumption rating of 4.4 l/100km, putting it in-line with much smaller cars that include the Lexus CT 200h hybrid (4.1), the Honda Insight hybrid (4.3) and the Smart fortwo (4.4).

Those figures also see the Prius v bettering Suzuki's tiny Alto (4.7) and Toyota's own Camry Hybrid (5.2), which Toyota credits to a focus on lightweight construction and materials, and a low 0.29 drag coefficient.

The Prius v's suspension package includes MacPherson struts at the front, and a semi-independent torsion beam arrangement at the rear.

Braking is managed by 296x28mm ventilated discs at the front wheels, and 290x12mm solid discs at the rear.

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Driving Modes

Like the Prius hatch, there are three on-demand drive modes offered to the driver of the Prius v. EV mode allows for running on electric motor power alone for up to two kilometres.

Eco mode prioritises fuel economy by slightly damping throttle response and limiting power consumption from the air-conditioning system.

Power mode boosts system performance.

Size and Storage

The Prius V is based on the existing Prius hatch, but Toyota says the larger MPV has been given an extensive ground-up redesign, and all of its exterior panels are new.

The new seven-seater wagon is the largest model in the Prius family, measuring 135mm longer, 30mm wider and 100mm taller than the regular third-generation Prius.

Thanks to its stretched underpinnings and taller design, it offers up to 60 percent more storage space.

Seating includes a sliding three-part second-row seat and fold-flat 50/50 split third-row seat.

With seven passengers on board, the Prius v lists rear cargo space at 180 litres (thanks also to its temporary spare wheel), while dropping the third seating row will boost storage capacity to 485 litres.



Standard features for the Prius v includes daytime running lamps, 16-inch alloy wheels with aerodynamic plastic covers, privacy rear side glass, and front and rear fog lamps.

Convenience features include cruise control, auto lights on (daylight sensing and auto off), Smart Entry/Push Start, automatic power-operated side windows, rear side sunshades and driver's seat electric lumbar adjustment.

There is also automatic climate control, a 6.1 inch centre display screen, a head-up driver display, six-speaker audio with Bluetooth and USB connectivity, steering-mounted controls, and tilt/telescopic-adjustable steering column.

Safety equipment includes seven SRS airbags (driver and passenger front, front side airbags, full-length curtain airbags, driver's knee airbag), a reversing camera, traction control, vehicle stability control, hill-start assist control and emergency stop lamp signal.



Available in one trim grade, the Prius V is priced from $35,990 (plus on-road costs).

Prius v, like all new Toyota vehicles, is covered by Toyota Service Advantage with a capped price of $130 for each of up to six scheduled logbook services in the first three years or 60,000km. Clarify details with your dealer.

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