2016 Toyota Prius V


#1 out of 8 in 2016 Wagons

2016 Toyota Prius V Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2016 Toyota Prius V was new.


Performance: 7.2

The 2016 Toyota Prius v has sluggish acceleration, according to reviewers, but it gets good fuel economy. They add the hybrid powertrain transitions seamlessly from gas to electric power. The Prius v has composed handling and a comfortable ride, critics write.

  • "As is par for the course for the Prius family, though, the V is pretty bland to drive, and its lackluster acceleration means you must be more conservative with merging and passing maneuvers." -- Edmunds
  • "… the 2015 Toyota Prius V won't be your first choice for an enthusiastic drive through the mountains. Still, it does better than you'd think, with a comfortably firm suspension that deals nicely with city traffic, and enough power to merge onto freeways." -- Kelley Blue Book (2015)
  • "Drawbacks? Well, the Prius v employs the same hybrid power system as its lighter sibling, so it's both slower and less fuel efficient. But speed is largely a matter of personal preference, and while 42 miles per gallon isn't quite 50 mpg, it's not what we'd call shabby, either." -- AutoTrader (2014)
  • "One of the nice things about its larger size is that Prius v has a bit more comfortable ride than the smaller Prii." -- The Chicago Tribune (2013)

Acceleration and Power

The 2016 Prius v comes with a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine and an electric motor that together produce 134 horsepower. A continuously variable transmission (CVT), which is a type of automatic, is standard. The Prius v gets excellent fuel economy for a wagon and decent fuel economy for a hybrid, at an EPA-estimated 44/40 mpg city/highway.

Critics agree the Prius v accelerates slowly, which is a fairly common complaint for hybrids, though a few note there is adequate power for city driving. Some say the Prius v can be noisy. Others report the hybrid powertrain switches from gas to electric power smoothly.

  • "Acceleration is underwhelming as well. Highway merging and passing requires some planning, and the CVT's tendency to keep the engine droning at high rpm is off-putting." -- Edmunds
  • "It's not exactly quick - not like that's the point of a Prius - but it does offer enough power to deal with urban conditions or merging with freeway traffic." -- Kelley Blue Book (2015)
  • "There's no getting around the power shortage, though, as it's apparent every time you need to accelerate." -- AutoTrader (2014)
  • "Transitions when the gas engine cycles on and off during driving are very smooth." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

Handling and Braking

The automotive press reports the 2016 Prius v has composed handling and a very comfortable ride, though they note its handling is in no way athletic. Some reviewers say the steering is precise, while others say it doesn't provide enough feedback to the driver. Some testers say the regenerative brakes may take some time for the driver to adjust to, but others report that they respond quickly.

  • "The 2016 Toyota Prius V's ride quality is remarkably smooth and comfortable around town as well as on the highway. It's an easy car to drive and should keep green-oriented owners quite satisfied. But the Prius' handling limits are low and the steering effort is very light and relays minimal information to the driver on how the car is connecting to the road." -- Edmunds
  • "The ride and handling qualify as comfortable, stable and predictable, but it's certainly not a corner-carver. If that's your goal, you obviously should be looking somewhere else." -- Kelley Blue Book (2014)
  • "The regenerative brakes may feel odd if you're not familiar with the inconsistent responses of these systems, but we got used to them and we're sure you will, too." -- AutoTrader (2014)
  • "While not particularly sporty, Prius v has well-balanced handling with accurate steering and confident road manners. Braking action is strong and swift with natural pedal feel that surpasses that of the v's hatchback sibling." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

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