Design and Engineering

Design and Engineering

Good The all new Prius c joined the Toyota family in March 2012. The Prius c doesn’t fall too far from the Prius family tree sharing a striking resemblance. Although the Prius c shares similarity to its bigger brother the Prius c does have its own unique personality that is designed to attract an entirely new audience of singles, couples and young families. The front end of the Prius c is very aerodynamic; the bonnet is raked sharply for optimal airflow. From the side, the Prius c features an aerodynamic strip that starts from the bottom of the front door and continues along the door and all the way over the wheel arch forming part of the flared rear wheel guard.
Not so good The rear of the Prius c is one of its least appealing angles in our opinion. The rear bumper is quite chunky and protrudes out making the car look bloated.
Interior and Styling

Interior and Styling

Good Inside the Prius c features a very cool and unique interior design. The dash has a tiered design, the top tier has two LCD screens. The first screen displays your speedo, gear selection, and fuel gauge while the second screen is a multi-information display (MID) that features a cool colour menu that allows you to rotate through various information like current trip, average fuel consumption, instant fuel consumption, eco rating and so on. Prius c has a four-spoke urethane steering wheel while the Prius c i-Tech has a four-spoke premium steering wheel. Both models feature touch sensitive soft-touch controls for audio, air conditioning temperature, and MID menu control buttons. The steering column is also tilt and telescopic adjustable for greater driver comfort. The interior colour scheme of the new Prius c range is very cutting edge and futuristic. The dash is made of a textured plastic that is finished in a metallic baby blue colour, while the fabric seats feature a pin stripe pattern that is finished in a metallic silver colour. The dash and doors feature a fluoro blue trim that add to the overall futuristic design. There is also plenty of leg room for rear seat passengers and the boot features 260 litres of cargo space with the seats upright.
Not so good Fit and finish is definitely top notch, but the choice of materials isn’t quite as good as some of the German competitors.
Performance

Performance

Good Toyota’s new compact hybrid is offered in two variants - Prius c and Prius c i-Tech. Both grades are equipped with a tweaked version of the 1.5-litre engine found in the second-generation Prius. The 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine produces 54kW of power and 111Nm of torque while the 520V electric motor produces 45kW of power and 169Nm of torque. Sending power to the front wheels is a Constantly Variable Transmission or CVT. The official combined fuel consumption for the new Prius c is 3.9-litres per 100kms which is pretty impressive, what’s more is the 3.7-litre per 100kms for urban city driving. So you’ll actually look forward to the daily commute because you’ll make further fuel savings. The Prius c is by no means a ‘hot hatch’ but it does have plenty of torque for acceleration and climbing steep hills.
Not so good The 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine is quite loud once you push higher in the rev range, but this is only a problem when you start to really plant the right foot. The car is built for fuel saving and not performance so this isn’t really an issue.
Ride and Handling

Ride and Handling

Good Toyota has gone to great lengths to reduce the overall weight of the Prius c range. The weight-loss program includes smaller, lighter and more efficient technologies in the body frame, engine, hybrid and engine radiators, the climate control system and catalysts. Similar weight, size and efficiency technology has been adopted for key hybrid components such as the transaxle, power-control unit and battery. Not only does this help with fuel savings it also helps with handling performance. The Prius c feels solid on the road with fairly good levels of grip, comfort and handling performance. Steering weight and feel is also quite good.
Not so good Because this isn’t a sport hot hatch the Toyota Prius c does suffer from body roll and understeer if you try and push the little hybrid. However, under normal driving conditions the Prius c is very compliant.
Buying and Owning

Buying and Owning

Good Toyota has done well in offering up a very competitive package; both Prius c grades come with a great level of standard equipment. There is also the peace of mind in owing a car that has a Toyota badge on it, because they have a good reputation for building quality cars. There is also the benefit of Toyota’s capped price servicing and eight year hybrid battery warranty.
Not so good Although the Toyota Prius c is competitively priced it doesn’t offer the same on road driving performance as some of its diesel competitors.