$14,830 - $24,213

2017 Toyota Prius Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2017 Toyota Prius was new.

Scorecard

Interior: 8.1

The 2017 Toyota Prius has a unique, yet refined interior styling. Materials throughout are high quality, and the build quality is excellent. Drivers seeking a more luxurious cabin should consider the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid. The Prius' front seats are spacious and comfortable, and the rear seats have plenty of headroom, but legroom may be a bit tight for rear passengers with longer legs. The Prius' infotainment system is mostly easy to use, though it lacks some of the more advanced features available in some competitors. Cargo room is excellent compared to other compact cars and is even more than you get in nearly every hybrid  rival too.

  • "Older Prius models had a quirky, futuristic interior layout that, although useful, suffered from cheap-looking and cheap-feeling plastics and fabrics. The latest Prius has a more conventional layout and higher-quality materials." -- Edmunds
  • "Two-tone graphics bring life to the interior's overall style statement, while soft-touch surfaces express refinement." -- Automobile Magazine (2016)
  • "The Mirai-like dashboard looks and feels upscale, fit and finish is better, and the materials generally speaking are a huge improvement on the old Prius." -- Motor Trend (2016)

Seating

Cloth upholstery and a tilting and telescoping steering wheel are standard in the five-seat 2017 Prius. Leatherette upholstery, heated front seats, and an eight-way power-adjustable driver's seat are available. Rival hybrids like the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid and Kia Optima Hybrid are available with real leather instead of leatherette. The Optima Hybrid can be equipped with a heated steering wheel, ventilated front seats, and heated rear seats as well.

Up front, there's ample room for adults to sit comfortably without feeling cramped. In the back, headroom is generous, though legroom is a bit cramped. Most adults should be comfortable in the back for short drives, but if you've got really long legs, the back of the Prius will not be the most comfortable place for you. The Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid is a better choice if you'll have tall people in the back, because it has generous legroom.

The Prius has two full sets of LATCH connectors in the outboard rear seats. The middle seat has an upper tether, and you can borrow the lower anchors from the outboard seats. All the connectors are easy to find and reach.

  • "The entire cockpit area feels spacious and the rear passenger area is decently sized. I'm not a huge guy, just five-foot-nine, but I was comfortable enough sitting back there." --Autoblog (2016)
  • "Behind the wheel, the Gen 4 Prius feels very comfortable." -- Car and Driver (2016)
  • The rear seat actually has about 2.5 inches less legroom than the old car. But the headroom has been maintained and improved for front-seat passengers. Even with less room for our 6-foot frame, that backseat didn't feel too tight." -- Autoweek (2016)

Interior Features

The Prius comes standard with automatic climate control, push-button start, a 6.1-inch touch screen, a six-speaker audio system, Siri Eyes Free, Bluetooth, a USB port, a rearview camera, forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, lane keep assist, and adaptive cruise control.

Optional features include a 7-inch touch screen, navigation, the Entune App Suite, HD Radio, satellite radio, a 10-speaker JBL audio system, wireless mobile device charging, a moonroof, the Safety Connect telematics system, a head-up display, active park assist, and front and rear parking sensors.

All models come with an infotainment system, though there are differences depending on trim. Base models come with a 6.1-inch touch screen that features a USB port and Bluetooth to let you stream your music through the audio system. Siri Eyes Free is standard in all Prius models too. It allows you to access your messages or calls on your iPhone using only your voice. Higher trims get a larger 7-inch touch screen that features the Entune App Suite, which lets you access internet apps like Yelp and Pandora using your smartphone's data connection. Unfortunately, to use the App Suite's features, you'll have to download an additional app on your smartphone, so it can be a cumbersome process. Otherwise, the touch screens have sharp graphics with fast response times, so overall the infotainment system is easy to use.

Some competitors offer better smartphone integration than the Entune App Suite or Siri Eyes Free. The Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid, which has a starting price a few thousand dollars higher than the Prius, comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. These smartphone integration systems let you use select apps from your smartphone on the car's infotainment screen. As an added bonus, the Malibu Hybrid also gets a 4G LTE Wi-Fi hot spot in all models.

Changing climate settings in the Prius is straightforward thanks to physical controls on the dashboard. In some rivals, you have to adjust the temperature or fan speed using the touch screen. Note that the Prius' digital gauges are mounted rather unusually toward the center of the dash. It doesn't feel very driver-centric and can require an awkward glance away from the road to see your speed. An optional head-up display will project your speed and other info on the windshield right in front of the driver.

See 2017 Toyota Prius specs »

  • The 7-inch touchscreen responds quickly to commands, and though high-level smartphone integration requires a clumsy Entune app, you can do without and still have a satisfying experience via USB or Bluetooth audio connections." -- Edmunds
  • "The graphics on the center display are improved for all models. All displays are crisp and look modern now with full-color graphics. It can seem like a small thing, but when a cheap smartphone can display pretty, crisp graphics, why can't a car?" -- Cars.com (2016)
  • "The simple HVAC buttons deserve a special call-out, for making it easy to adjust the temperature. Toyota hasn't seen fit to add Apple CarPlay or Android Auto to the new Prius, but connecting an iPhone to the car's infotainment system was a quick enough process. The whole dashboard seems designed for maximum use and minimum fuss." -- Autoblog (2016)

Cargo

The base 2017 Prius has 24.6 cubic feet of cargo room behind the back seats. If you buy a Prius Two Eco, Four, or Four Touring model, you'll get a bit more room for your stuff, with 27.4 cubic feet of cargo space. Both figures are excellent compared to other compact cars. Even hatchbacks like the Kia Soul and Volkswagen Golf fall short of the Prius' hauling abilities. The Prius has one of the largest cargo spaces among hybrid cars, too, with only its sibling the Prius v offering more cargo room. All trims come standard with a 60/40 split-folding rear seat to let you haul larger or longer items.

  • "There's more to like about the Prius than its fuel efficiency. For one, it's a practical hatchback with loads of cargo room." -- Edmunds
  • "Regardless of which pack powers your Prius, the battery is now mounted beneath the rear seat instead of behind it. This improves chassis weight distribution and helps lower the car's center of gravity. It also means much improved gear storage. The most spacious models offer 27.4 cubic feet of cargo capacity, up by about 6 cubic feet." -- Autoweek (2016)
  • "Luggage space is impressive at 27.4 cu ft. (Prius Two Eco, Four, Four Touring), 24.6 cu ft. (Prius Two, Three, Three Touring) and expands even more with the second row folded flat." -- Autotrader (2016)

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