Updated: Nov 3, 2019
Never would I have thought i'd come away impressed by driving a Toyota Prius. I can sometimes be too much of a fanboy when it comes to all thing #Toyota but the argument could be made over and over that Toyota made soulless appliances...like the Prius. I had driven a couple of previous generation Prii (the plural for Prius) and each time I came away just thinking that if you didn't have to drive one, then please avoid it at all costs. Toyota 10 years ago focused so much on making just the average, so I was surprised when they decided to inject some sportiness in to the TNGA platform.
The Toyota New Global Architecture is everywhere, it's in the new Corolla, Camry, upcoming Rav4, it even goes rear wheel drive in the Lexus LC...that says something. Developing a new chassis for Toyota under the helm of Akio Toyoda as President meant that having road feel and a sporty character was paramount, as a fan of motor sports Toyoda wanted to make sure every vehicle created by Toyota was not just average, it was special enough to make you smile.
Did I smile on my way to 50-plus miles per gallon as i drove up and down California's coast? Well to be honest, sure I did a few times, and it didn't only have to do with saving on those high West-coast gas prices. With only 121 combined horsepower between the gas and electric motor, I imagined I would have a hard time keeping up with traffic but I was wrong. The Prius weighs just a smidgen over 3,000 Lbs; that helps along with the gearing and low end torque, to feed a driver's need to either get out of the way or keep up. While not delving to deep into the features of this car, they are all pretty standard fare, blue tooth, HID lights, GPS, various drive modes like electric-only and power mode; what I really wanted to elaborate on was how enjoyable it was. I was able to get around Los Angeles, San Diego, and every stop in between with ease, power delivery was surprisingly quick, carving through some mountain ranges and long sweeps did not upset the chassis nor did it make me feel like I was overworking it, and i was damn comfortable in the leather seats as I waited on the 405 for traffic to creep forward.
This isn't meant to be a call to action, I will not tell you that buying a #Prius will save the world, it also won't replace your sports car, but it's a great everyday car if you're looking to upgrade from something a bit older or run down. I had a lot of reservations when thinking about driving the true #California car, with all that we ingest now about how certain cars deliver exhilarating experiences, it was this boring Prius that left me the most surprised in how adequate it was at delivering every need during my trip. While you're out and about and see those hypermilers clogging up the passing lane, just think about what you would do with the pedal to the metal while still getting somewhere near 50 MPG; also perfectly carving through a road without needing to ride the brakes...it was fun, trust me.