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8.9

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 8.8
Performance: 7.6
Interior: 7.5
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.3
Safety: 9.3
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2012 Toyota Prius Review

The 2012 Toyota Prius has excellent fuel economy, lots of cargo space and a long list of standard features, though reviewers agreed that it lacks agility.

Pros & Cons

  • Excellent fuel economy
  • Huge cargo area
  • Lots of standard features
  • Ponderous handling

New for 2012

  • Updated exterior and interior styling
  • Standard 6.1-inch touch-screen infotainment system

2012 Toyota Prius Overview

Reviewers said the 2012 Toyota Prius is by no means fast, but it has enough power for driving around town and getting up to speed on the highway. Still, some critics said that the Prius’ engine can rev loudly when more power is needed. A continuously variable transmission (CVT) is standard, and the 2012 Toyota Prius gets an EPA-estimated 51/48 mpg city/highway, which is exceptional fuel economy for a hybrid. The Prius Plug-in is also available, which can be charged from a household outlet. The Prius’ smooth ride pleased reviewers, but they said the Prius leans noticeably while cornering, and that its steering and brakes provide little feedback.

Most reviewers said the 2012 Toyota Prius has an attractive interior design, with nice color combinations and materials. The Prius has 21.6 cubic feet of cargo space, which is outstanding for a midsize hybrid car. The 2012 Prius comes standard with automatic climate control, proximity key, push-button start, an infotainment system with a 6.1-inch touch-screen display, Bluetooth phone and music streaming and a USB port. Available features include navigation, satellite radio, adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, lane departure warning, leatherette upholstery, an eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat and a solar roof package that includes a moonroof and a solar-powered air conditioning system that cools the cabin when the car is turned off.

Other Cars to Consider

Reviewers said the Ford Fusion Hybrid offers impressive acceleration for a hybrid, as well as regenerative brakes that operate very smoothly. Like the Prius, the Fusion Hybrid has a high reliability score for the class.

Critics said the 2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid has strong acceleration, and its smooth regenerative brakes received praise as well. Automotive journalists were impressed by the Camry Hybrid’s handsome interior design and high-quality interior materials, which include premium-looking faux wood trim and nicely-textured, soft-touch plastics.

Compare the Prius, Fusion Hybrid and Camry Hybrid »

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