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2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In Review

The 2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In finishes near the bottom of our hybrid and electric car rankings. It gets the terrific gas mileage you want from a hybrid, and it has a comfortable ride. However, it's not that quick off the line, and its interior feels cheap.

Pros & Cons

  • Excellent fuel economy
  • Smooth ride
  • Spacious cabin and trunk
  • Perfect reliability rating
  • Cheap interior plastics
  • Unhurried acceleration




Critics' Rating: 5.8
Performance: 5.1
Interior: 5.6
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.3
This rating isn’t available yet for the current model year. In the meantime, last year’s rating of 9.2 for safety is being used to calculate this vehicle’s overall score.
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In Overview

Is the 2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In a Good Used Car?

Yes, the 2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In is a good choice in the hybrid and electric car class. It earns a superb reliability rating, has a roomy interior, and gets great gas mileage. It can also drive for short distances on electric power alone, and true to its name, it can be plugged in at your destination to recharge its batteries. Still, some rivals make better choices. For example, the 2015 Honda Accord Hybrid offers a much nicer interior and zippier handling, while the 2015 Chevy Volt provides a longer electric-only driving range.

Compare the Prius Plug-In, Accord Hybrid, and Volt »

Used 2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In Performance and Interior

The Toyota Prius Plug-In hybrid has a 1.8-liter engine and an electric motor that produce a combined 134 horsepower. A continuously variable automatic transmission and front-wheel drive are standard. Fuel economy is the Prius Plug-In’s focus, and its powertrain delivers with an excellent 50 mpg (combined city/highway) when operating in hybrid mode. The Prius Plug-In also has an EV mode, which provides an electric range of 11 miles. Once its lithium-ion battery pack is depleted, the Prius switches to gasoline power to recharge the battery and both power sources propel the car. Drivers can plug in the Prius to recharge its batteries as well. A full charge using a 120-volt outlet takes about three hours, and a 240-volt outlet lowers the charging time to 1.5 hours.

The compromise to this superb efficiency is performance. The Prius Plug-In offers leisurely acceleration and lackluster passing power. That said, it smoothly transitions from electric to gasoline power and drives silently in EV mode. The suspension provides a supple and comfortable ride quality as well, though handling is far from engaging.

Read more about Prius Plug-In performance »

The 2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In seats five in its spacious cabin. The soft, comfortable front seats offer generous head- and legroom. The rear seats are adult-friendly as well, and unlike some hybrid vehicles, the Prius Plug-In’s battery doesn’t diminish cargo space. Its hatchback offers the same 21.6 cubic feet of cargo space as the standard Prius. The 60/40-split rear seats fold to increase this space further. The Prius has two full sets of LATCH car-seat connectors in the rear outboard seats, as well as a tether anchor in the middle seat. Cloth upholstery and heated front seats are standard; leatherette upholstery is available.

Toyota equips all Prius Plug-In hybrids with navigation, Bluetooth, a USB port, a CD player, satellite radio, and the Entune app suite, which includes traffic, weather, and Pandora internet radio apps. Base models have a 6.1-inch touch screen, while Advanced models receive a larger 7-inch screen and a head-up display (which projects pertinent information onto the windshield). Both function well and are accompanied by user-friendly controls on the dashboard, though the dashboard’s hard plastics look and feel cheap.

Read more about Prius Plug-In interior »

Used 2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In Prices

The price of a used 2015 Prius Plug-In hybrid ranges from about $20,500 for base models to around $23,800 for Advanced models. The price will vary depending on the vehicle's condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

We Did the Research for You: 21 Reviews Analyzed

We’ve researched 21 Prius Plug-In hybrid reviews and analyzed hard data points like safety scores and the total cost of ownership to help you make the best car buying decision possible.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking cars, trucks, and SUVs for a decade, and our Best Cars team has more than 75 years of automotive industry experience combined. While we’re passionate about cars, we’re even more committed to giving helpful consumer advice. To ensure our reviews remain impartial, we refuse expensive gifts and trips from car companies, and an outside team handles the advertising on our site.

How Reliable Is the 2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In?

The 2015 Prius Plug-In hybrid earns an excellent reliability rating of five out of five from J.D. Power.

Read more about Prius Plug-In reliability »

How Safe Is the Prius Plug-In?

Neither the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration nor the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has published full crash test results for the 2015 model year.

Toyota equips all Prius Plug-Ins with a rearview camera. Adaptive cruise control and Toyota’s Pre-Collision System (forward collision warning with brake assist) are available in Advanced models.

Should I Consider Another Used Prius Plug-In?

The 2015 Prius Plug-In marks the fourth and final model year of the car’s first generation. There were no major changes between these model years. As a result, you may find similarly equipped 2012, 2013, and 2014 models at much lower prices. The Prius Plug-In was replaced by the Toyota Prius Prime in 2017.

Compare the 2013, 2014, and 2015 Prius Plug-In »

Which Used Toyota Prius Plug-In Is Right for Me?

Toyota offers the 2015 Prius Plug-In hybrid in two trim levels: base and Advanced. Base models have a 6.1-inch touch screen, a navigation system, voice recognition, Bluetooth, a USB port, a CD player, satellite radio, cruise control, proximity keyless entry, heated front seats, and cloth upholstery. Plug-In Advanced models add a larger 7-inch touch screen, a head-up display, JBL speakers, and SofTex leatherette upholstery.

All Prius Plug-Ins are covered by a transferrable eight-year/100,000-mile hybrid warranty. However, you may want to shop for a certified pre-owned Prius Plug-In as well. Toyota offers a one-year/12,000-mile limited warranty on all of its certified pre-owned vehicles, and extends the original powertrain warranty to seven years or 100,000 miles. Each CPO Toyota must pass a 160-point inspection. Additional benefits like towing and roadside assistance may be available, so read the Toyota warranty page carefully.

Read more about certified pre-owned vehicles »

Read more about the Toyota certified pre-owned program »

2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In and Other Cars to Consider

Wondering what makes a plug-in hybrid different? Conventional hybrids like the Toyota Prius and Camry Hybrid pair a gas engine with an electric motor to maximize fuel economy. The Prius Plug-In follows a similar formula, but unlike those models, it can drive for short distances on battery power only. It can also recharge its batteries using a charging station. In essence, plug-ins offer drivers the efficiency of a hybrid and the electric-only range of an EV, without the worry of running out of juice.

Which Is Better: 2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In or 2015 Toyota Prius?

There are few differences between the 2015 Toyota Prius and its plug-in sibling. Both share the same liftback body style, roomy interior, and superb reliability. Both return nearly the same fuel economy as well. The regular Prius is the better buy, however. While it doesn’t offer the Plug-In’s electric-only driving range, used models are often much less expensive. You’re better off sticking with the standard Prius – or the practical Prius v wagon – and saving your money.

Which Is Better: 2015 Toyota Prius Plug-In or 2015 Chevrolet Volt?

The Chevy Volt isn’t without its blemishes. It has slim rear seats, less cargo space than the Prius Plug-In, a lower predicted reliability rating, and lower fuel economy in its hybrid mode (37 mpg combined city/highway). Even so, the Volt is a better fit for many commuters. It can drive for up to 38 miles on electricity alone, which is more than triple the Plug-In’s 11-mile range. It also offers zippier acceleration, sharper handling, and a higher-quality interior. Both used models are often available within the same price range.

Compare the Prius Plug-In, Prius, and Volt »

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