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Toyota Mirai
FIRST DRIVE REVIEW
4.5

2019 Mirai

For commuters who live in a region where the hydrogen fueling infrastructure is already built out, opting for the 2019 Toyota Mirai may make a lot of sense. For starters, it's a genuinely futuristic experience since the Mirai is powered by a hydrogen fuel cell that converts the stuff of stars into electricity and water. This electricity goes to a small battery that drives the motor while the water leaves the tailpipe as vapor.

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Toyota 4Runner
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4.1

2019 Toyota 4Runner

TRD Pro has new Fox shock absorbers, new skid plate and roof rack, and standard sunroof and JBL sound system New Limited Nightshade Edition with black-out color scheme Part of the fifth 4Runner generation introduced for 2010.

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Toyota 86
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4.5

Advantages of Buying a New or Toyota 86

It's easy to pick on the 2019 Toyota 86 and count the ways it falls just short of excellent. It's small inside. There's limited passenger and cargo space. It's not particularly comfortable, especially for taller drivers, and its technology feels dated and inadequate.

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In the UK, the Advertising Standards Authority, an independent body charged with policing the rules of the advertising industry, ruled that a television advert for the Toyota Prius should not be broadcast again in the same form, having breached rules concerning misleading advertising. The advertisement stated that the Prius "emits up to one tonne less CO

Standard connectivity available only to original purchaser for 10 years. Connected access services are subject to change. Does not include emergency or security services. Vehicle diagnostics capabilities vary by model and plan. Message and data rates may apply. Requires contact method on file and enrollment to receive alerts. Not all issues will deliver alerts. See onstar.com for detail and limitations.


Model year 2018 and newer vehicles include: 1 month of OnStar Safety & Security Plan and 1 month of Chevrolet Connected Services which include navigation services, Remote Access Plan and 1 month or 3 gigabytes of 4G LTE data (whichever comes first) from vehicle delivery date. Services are subject to user terms and limitations. Visit onstar.com for more details. Data plans offered by AT&T. Availability subject to change.
The EPA estimates the thriftiest Prius Eco will earn up to 58 mpg in the city and 53 mpg on the highway. The other front-drive versions are EPA rated at 54 mpg city and 50 mpg on highway. Those who drive mostly highway miles and like to travel with the flow of fast-moving traffic might be disappointed to learn that the Prius delivered 46 mpg on our 200-mile highway fuel-economy test (which we conduct at a steady 75 mph), undershooting its EPA rating by 4 mpg. While we haven't tested an all-wheel-drive model, the EPA estimates it will earn 52 mpg city and 48 highway.
You’re ready to purchase your dream car. Before hitting the dealership, apply to a few lenders to see the best offers. These can include a bank, online lender or credit union. Or go to LendingTree, you can fill out an online form and receive up to five potential auto loan offers from lenders at once, instead of filling out five different lender applications. Then, head to the car dealer with your pre-approved auto loan.
Model year 2018 and newer vehicles include: 1 month of OnStar Safety & Security Plan and 1 month of Chevrolet Connected Services which include navigation services, Remote Access Plan and 1 month or 3 gigabytes of 4G LTE data (whichever comes first) from vehicle delivery date. Services are subject to user terms and limitations. Visit onstar.com for more details. Data plans offered by AT&T. Availability subject to change.
There are two principal battery packs, the High Voltage (HV) battery, also known as the traction battery, and a 12 volt battery known as the Low Voltage (LV) battery. The traction battery of the first generation Prius update (2000 onwards) was a sealed 38-module nickel metal hydride (NiMH) battery pack providing 273.6 volt, 6.5 Ah capacity and weighing 53.3 kg (118 lb)[165] and is supplied by Japan's Panasonic EV Energy Co. They are normally charged between 40–60% of maximum capacity to prolong battery life as well as allow headroom for regenerative braking. Each battery pack uses 10–15 kg (22–33 lb) of lanthanum, and each Prius electric motor contains 1 kg (2 lb) of neodymium; production of the car is described as "the biggest user of rare earths of any object in the world."[166] The LV battery is essential to starting the car and providing initial power to the computer.
As the Prius reached ten years of being available in the US market, in February 2011 Consumer Reports examined the lifetime and replacement cost of the Prius battery. The magazine tested a 2002 Toyota Prius with over 200,000 miles on it, and compared the results to the nearly identical 2001 Prius with 2,000 miles tested by Consumer Reports 10 years before. The comparison showed little difference in performance when tested for fuel economy and acceleration. Overall fuel economy of the 2001 model was 40.6 miles per US gallon (5.79 L/100 km; 48.8 mpg‑imp) while the 2002 Prius with high mileage delivered 40.4 miles per US gallon (5.82 L/100 km; 48.5 mpg‑imp). The magazine concluded that the effectiveness of the battery has not degraded over the long run.[168] The cost of replacing the first generation battery varies between US$2,200 and US$2,600 from a Toyota dealer, but low-use units from salvage yards are available for around US$500.[168] One study indicates it may be worthwhile to rebuild batteries using good blades from defective used batteries.[169] 

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Air Resources Board (CARB) rate the Prius as among the cleanest vehicles sold in the United States, based on smog-forming emissions.[1] The 2018 model year Prius Eco ranks as the second most fuel efficient gasoline-powered car available in the US without plug-in capability, following the Hyundai Ioniq "Blue".[2][3]
The automobile that defined this size in the United States was the Rambler Six that was introduced in 1956, although it was called a "compact" car at that time.[2] Much smaller than any standard contemporary full-size cars, it was called a compact to distinguish it from the small imported cars that were being introduced into the marketplace.[3] By the 1960s, the car was renamed the Rambler Classic and while it retained its basic dimensions, it was now competing with an array of new "intermediate" models from General Motors, Ford and Chrysler.[4]
As the Prius reached ten years of being available in the US market, in February 2011 Consumer Reports examined the lifetime and replacement cost of the Prius battery. The magazine tested a 2002 Toyota Prius with over 200,000 miles on it, and compared the results to the nearly identical 2001 Prius with 2,000 miles tested by Consumer Reports 10 years before. The comparison showed little difference in performance when tested for fuel economy and acceleration. Overall fuel economy of the 2001 model was 40.6 miles per US gallon (5.79 L/100 km; 48.8 mpg‑imp) while the 2002 Prius with high mileage delivered 40.4 miles per US gallon (5.82 L/100 km; 48.5 mpg‑imp). The magazine concluded that the effectiveness of the battery has not degraded over the long run.[168] The cost of replacing the first generation battery varies between US$2,200 and US$2,600 from a Toyota dealer, but low-use units from salvage yards are available for around US$500.[168] One study indicates it may be worthwhile to rebuild batteries using good blades from defective used batteries.[169] 

Looking to get your Toyota vehicle serviced or repaired? Then come visit us at East Coast Toyota for all of your car repair, servicing or auto body shop needs. We have an experienced crew of experts that will be able to diagnose the issue at hand and make the correct adjustments and repairs so that your vehicle is up and running in no time. Our auto repair & service center proudly serves the Hackensack, North Jersey & Bergen County areas. Need a specific part instead of repair or servicing? We keep a vast selection of original parts & accessories in stock so that we can complete your order in no time. If, for some reason, we don’t have the car part you need then we will immediately work on acquiring it as soon as possible.
In the UK, the Advertising Standards Authority, an independent body charged with policing the rules of the advertising industry, ruled that a television advert for the Toyota Prius should not be broadcast again in the same form, having breached rules concerning misleading advertising. The advertisement stated that the Prius "emits up to one tonne less CO
The Wall Street Journal reported in February 2007 on concerns that quiet cars like the Prius may pose a safety risk to those who rely on engine noise to sense the presence or location of moving vehicles.[197] Blind pedestrians are a primary concern, and the National Federation of the Blind advocates audio emitters on hybrid vehicles,[198] but it has been argued that increased risks may also affect sighted pedestrians or bicyclists who are accustomed to aural cues from vehicles. However, silent vehicles are already relatively common, and there is also a lack of aural cues from vehicles that have a conventional internal combustion engine where engine noise has been reduced by noise-absorbing materials in the engine bay and noise-canceling muffler systems. In July 2007, a spokesman for Toyota said the company is aware of the issue and is studying options.[199]
We also drove both cars on a flat but snow-covered road with an obstacle course that required a quick right-left S-turn. When we tried the maneuver in the front-drive Prius, its front tires were easily overwhelmed when we accelerated and steered at the same time. Because of that, it was hard to keep the car from running wide. With AWD-e, there was still some squirming through the course, but it was far more composed and easy to drive.
Talk about gaming the system. With its low-slung four-door profile, large liftgate and ample cargo area, the Regal Sportback is a sedan-wagon mashup that really works. Underhood is a quick turbocharged four-cylinder engine, optional all-wheel drive and responsive, if not exactly sporty, handling (there's a sport-themed Regal GS model for those seeking bigger thrills). The Sportback also delivers on Buick's traditional formula of a quiet, comfortable ride, but with modern confidence and control. This isn't a Buick sedan of old that wobbles and weaves around a tight turn. There's plenty of room behind the upright second row, but fold those rear seats down and you get nearly 61 cubic feet of space — more than Buick's own compact Envision SUV can manage. Keep in mind that the Regal Sportback tends to cost a bit more than its rivals, straddling the line between workaday and premium family sedans. See the Regal Sportback in our Sedan rankings
If you decide to continue service after your trial, the subscription plan you choose will automatically renew thereafter and you will be charged according to your chosen payment method at then-current rates. Fees and taxes apply. To cancel you must call SiriusXM at 1-866-635-2349. See SiriusXM Customer Agreement for complete terms at siriusxm.com. All fees and programming subject to change. Sirius, XM, SiriusXM and all related marks and logos are trademarks of Sirius XM Radio Inc.
If you decide to continue service after your trial, the subscription plan you choose will automatically renew thereafter and you will be charged according to your chosen payment method at then-current rates. Fees and taxes apply. To cancel you must call SiriusXM at 1-866-635-2349. See SiriusXM Customer Agreement for complete terms at siriusxm.com. All fees and programming subject to change. Sirius, XM, SiriusXM and all related marks and logos are trademarks of Sirius XM Radio Inc.
Advanced driver safety aids such as automatic emergency braking have become commonplace, but some automakers limit certain features to higher trim levels. For example, don't expect adaptive cruise control or blind-spot monitoring to come free with every model. Another thing to keep in mind is that there may be a range of infotainment systems on offer within a given model range, so make sure you check out any differences at the dealership before going with a lower-spec system.
2 emissions resulting from the building and disposal of the Prius. Toyota has not supplied the requested data to address statements that the lifetime energy usage of the Prius (including the increased environmental cost of manufacture and disposal of the nickel-metal hydride battery) is outweighed by lower lifetime fuel consumption.[187] Toyota states that lifetime CO 

In August 2013, Toyota Managing Officer Satoshi Ogiso, who was chief engineer for the Prius line, announced some of the improvements and key features of the next generation Prius.[66][67] This was the first generation of the Prius to use the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) modular platform, which provides a lower center of gravity and increased structural rigidity. Ogiso also explained that the next-generation Prius plug-in hybrid, the Prius Prime, was developed in parallel with the standard Prius model.[68][69]

The Prius's hybrid powertrain is not capable of delivering thrilling or even amusing acceleration. Its lethargy can't be given a free pass, as other competitors prove that acceptable performance need not be sacrificed in the pursuit of world-beating fuel economy. The all-wheel-drive versions feature an electric motor that functions separately from the hybrid system and powers the rear wheels.
Toyota unveiled the Prius c concept at the January 2011 North American International Auto Show. The Prius c has a lower list price and is smaller than the previous Prius hatchback. The production version was unveiled at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show as the Toyota Aqua, and was launched in Japan in December 2011.[94] The Prius c was released in the US and Canada in March 2012,[95][96] and in April 2012 in Australia and New Zealand.[97][98] The Prius c is not available in Europe, where instead, Toyota is selling the Toyota Yaris Hybrid since June 2012.[99] The Prius c and the Yaris Hybrid share the same powertrain.[100] The Aqua ranked as the second best selling car in Japan in 2012 after the Prius brand, as Toyota reports together sales of the conventional Prius and the Prius α.[101][102] When sales of these two Prius models are broken down, the Toyota Aqua ranked as the top selling model in Japan, including kei cars, with the Aqua leading monthly sales since February through December 2012.[103][104] Thereafter, the Aqua has been the top selling new car in Japan for three years running, from 2013 to 2015,[105][106][107] and it is considered the most successful nameplate launch in Japan in the last 20 years.[108]
Low gasoline prices are partially to blame, but Toyota is also culpable. Redesigned fascias for the 2019 model are its admission that when the fourth-generation Prius debuted for 2016, it was an ugly baby. With less-angry headlights and a smoother, more conservative look, the new face and derriere can only be seen as an improvement, one applied to front-drive and all-wheel-drive cars alike. Some resurfacing inside replaces the blinding-white plastic trim that seemed dated from new with piano black, polishing the idea that after 20 years the Prius is still an aspirational product.
New "official" size designations in the U.S. were introduced by the EPA, which defined market segments by passenger and cargo space.[10] Formerly mid-sized cars that were built on the same platform, like the AMC Matador sedan, had a combined passenger and cargo volume of 130 cubic feet (3.68 m3), and were now considered "full-size" automobiles.[11][12]
Former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) chief R. James Woolsey, Jr. drives a Prius because of its low fuel consumption. Woolsey noted the volatility of the Middle East, coupled with anti-US sentiment in much of the region. Noting that the high percentage of oil drilled in the Middle East gives vast profits to Middle Eastern regimes, Woolsey believes that it is a patriotic obligation to drive more efficient vehicles. In a Motor Trend magazine article, Woolsey stated that those oil profits find their way to terrorist groups like al-Qaeda, meaning that Americans who buy inefficient vehicles would, in effect, be indirectly funding terrorism. "We're paying for both sides in this war, and that's not a good long-term strategy," said Woolsey. "I have a bumper sticker on the back of my Prius that reads, 'Bin Laden hates this car.'"[213]
But the Prius AWD-e isn't quite like other all-wheel-drive vehicles. Instead of drawing from the engine to power the rear wheels, this new Prius uses a separate electric motor to enhance initial traction from 0 to 6 mph. If wheel slippage is detected, the motor will re-engage at speeds up to 43 mph. That means the rear wheels are only powered when needed, minimizing the detrimental effects that traditional all-wheel-drive systems have on fuel economy. Toyota estimates this new Prius AWD-e will achieve 50 mpg combined (52 city/48 highway), which is still very impressive. By comparison, the standard Prius gets an EPA-estimated 52 mpg combined, while the Prius L Eco earns 56 mpg combined.

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2019 Toyota Prius for sale near. There are currently 196 new 2019 Priuses listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $24,968 and mileage as low as 0 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the Carfax and Autocheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2019 Toyota Prius. Then select Edmunds special offers, perks, deals, and incentives to contact the dealer of your choice and save up to $2,262 on a used or CPO 2019 Prius available from a dealership near you.
The Prius first went on sale in Japan and other countries in 1997, and was available at all four Toyota Japan dealership chains, making it the first mass-produced hybrid vehicle.[4] It was subsequently introduced worldwide in 2000.[5] The Prius is sold in over 90 markets, with Japan and the United States being its largest markets.[6] Global cumulative Prius liftback sales reached the milestone 1 million vehicle mark in May 2008,[7] 2 million in September 2010,[8] and passed the 3 million mark in June 2013.[9] Cumulative sales of one million were achieved in the U.S. by early April 2011,[10] and Japan reached the 1 million mark in August 2011.[11] As of January 2017, the Prius liftback is the world's top selling hybrid car with almost 4 million units sold.[12]

But any Prius comes with a trade-off: performance. The Prius is neither quick nor engaging to drive. Additionally, its infotainment system isn't the easiest to use and lacks Apple CarPlay or Android Auto smartphone integration. But for shoppers seeking the most return per gallon, that's easily forgivable. Along with the Honda Insight, the Prius is one of our top recommended hybrids for 2019.
Presented at the April 2003 New York International Auto Show, for the 2004 US model year, the NHW20 Prius was a complete redesign. It became a compact liftback, sized between the Corolla and the Camry, with redistributed mechanical and interior space significantly increasing rear-seat legroom and luggage room. The second generation Prius is more environmentally friendly than the previous model (according to the EPA), and is 6 inches (150 mm) longer than the previous version.[38][39] Its more aerodynamic Kammback body balances length and wind resistance, resulting in a drag coefficient of Cd=0.26.[40] The development effort, led by chief engineer Shigeyuki Hori, led to 530 patents for the vehicle.[41]
There are two principal battery packs, the High Voltage (HV) battery, also known as the traction battery, and a 12 volt battery known as the Low Voltage (LV) battery. The traction battery of the first generation Prius update (2000 onwards) was a sealed 38-module nickel metal hydride (NiMH) battery pack providing 273.6 volt, 6.5 Ah capacity and weighing 53.3 kg (118 lb)[165] and is supplied by Japan's Panasonic EV Energy Co. They are normally charged between 40–60% of maximum capacity to prolong battery life as well as allow headroom for regenerative braking. Each battery pack uses 10–15 kg (22–33 lb) of lanthanum, and each Prius electric motor contains 1 kg (2 lb) of neodymium; production of the car is described as "the biggest user of rare earths of any object in the world."[166] The LV battery is essential to starting the car and providing initial power to the computer.
MARK TAKAHASHI: The Toyota Prius has been the hybrid poster child for almost two decades. When it comes to fuel economy, it's really hard to beat the Prius. But it's front-wheel drive-only layout posed challenges for shoppers in weather-prone areas. That's all changed with this, the 2019 Toyota Prius. Do me a favor and hit Subscribe below. We have a lot more reviews coming your way. Compared to the 2018 Prius, the 2019 models, including the all-wheel drive, perform and behave much like its predecessor. They're not particularly sporty, but they get the job done, and that job is fuel economy. When it goes on sale in January of 2019, prices are going to start right around $27,000 for the all-wheel drive, which is only about $1,400 more than the front-wheel drive. Another big difference between the all-wheel drive and front-wheel drive Prius is going to be the battery packs. They've switched from the lithium ion for the front wheel drive to a nickel metal hydride battery pack for the all-wheel drive. That's because Toyota says the nickel metal hydride battery pack does a lot better with cold climates. When it comes to styling differences, they've actually gone simple. They took out some of the more complex and awkward shapes that were in the front right under the headlights, and they even shaved off the headlights to give it more of a conventional wrap-around look. The same holds true for the tail lights. There are a lot more simpler and horizontal. Overall, you still get all of the character that you've come to expect from a Prius, for better or for worse. Like the exterior, of the interior of the 2019 Prius sees some minor changes here and there. The most obvious is the white, glossy trim that kind of adorned everything inside, that's gone. They've replaced it with black. And, personally, I think it looks a lot better. They've also moved the seat heater switches from buried deep down under here to right here in from the cup holders. Another addition. They've added two USB ports right behind for the rear seats. Otherwise, a lot of it remains unchanged, and that's a good thing. The addition of the all-wheel drive motor and the battery pack doesn't affect cargo space or rear passenger space at all. All right, so when it comes to driving the new Prius all-wheel drive, there's not a big difference between this and the regular front-wheel drive. To be honest, I don't feel a difference at all. They say that the power output and efficiency is pretty much dead on. This gets two miles per gallon less, so 50 miles per gallon combined, versus 52 for the regular Prius, and 56 miles per gallon for their L Eco. The added electric motors on the rear axle, those come into play under initial acceleration from 0 to 6 miles an hour. And that's really just to help out on slippery surfaces. The motor will kick in from time to time, up to 43 miles an hour, when needed when slippage is detected. Unfortunately, they didn't get around to adding Apple CarPlay for the 2019 model. They are saying it will come eventually. If you ask me, it'll probably be in the next model year. And that's too bad, because the Toyota Entune system, in my opinion, is one of the worst infotainment systems to use. It's just overcomplicated, and it's lacking a lot of features that are made up by the features on your smartphone. So to give an indication of how different or how much better the all-wheel drive might be, they've set up this wonderful little snowy course for us. This is the front-wheel drive version. And we'll see how much of a handful it really is. Let's go plowing and see what happens. Oh, yeah. So it's not a lot of steering response. It's really just-- oh, it's kind of just struggling to get through. And there's a lot of work you can hear with the anti-locks kicking in there. But it made it through just fine. It didn't need a whole lot of steering correction. So we'll see how the all-wheel drive performs in comparison. All right, so there's one important difference, which is initial traction. The rear motors, they come into play from 0 to 6 miles an hour just to get you going. So we're going to go up this gentle little incline here to get a real good indication of if it really works or not. Here we go. OK, so a little bit of crabbing here and there, but it left the line just fine. And that was pretty deep snow, actually. And the front-wheel drive Prius actually won't even make it up that hill. So we are lined up onto the chicane course. Here we go. Going in about the same speed and same aggression. Oh, it's tracking way better. Wow. Yeah, it's not bogging down at all. It's just kind of kicking in. We had maybe 25 miles an hour there, and that was a marked improvement. Good on you, Toyota. The 2019 Prius maintains its advantage for fuel economy and keeps all of its character that we've come to expect. The addition of the all-wheel drive model? Well, that's a significant step forward. It really opens up the Prius to shoppers who normally wouldn't consider it because they lived in snowy areas. After driving it on this course, I can say it makes a difference. It makes a big difference, especially when you're just starting out from a dead stop. For more information on the Prius, as well as its competition, head on over to edmunds.com. To see more videos like this, hit Subscribe. [MUSIC PLAYING]
But it's the shift in consumer tastes toward compact crossovers that has most impacted the Prius. Toyota's own RAV4 Hybrid is neck-and-neck in sales this year, even with a base price that's almost $4000 higher and fuel economy numbers that start with 3s rather than 5s. If you're looking for an answer to the "Why all-wheel drive? Why now?" questions, this is it. It doesn't hurt that Toyota is already selling a nearly identical all-wheel-drive Prius in Japan, simplifying this marketing move.
Visit our Toyota Universe finance page to get pre-approved today! The staff within our Finance Department is dedicated to putting you in the car you want, at a price you can afford. We also offer competitive auto leasing options for our customers who are not looking to purchase or finance a vehicle. Whether you are looking to finance or lease your new Toyota car, truck, or SUV, our finance experts will work to arrange affordable payments for our customers.
During the 1970s, the intermediate class in the U.S. was generally defined as vehicles with wheelbases between 112 inches (2,845 mm) and 118 inches (2,997 mm). The domestic manufacturers began changing the definition of "medium" as they developed new models for an evolving market place.[5] A turning point occurred in the late 1970s, when rising fuel costs and government fuel economy regulations caused all car classes to shrink, and in many cases to blur. Automakers moved previously "full-size" nameplates to smaller platforms such as the Ford LTD II and the Plymouth Fury.[6] A comparison test by Popular Science of four intermediate sedans (the 1976 AMC Matador, Chevrolet Malibu, Ford Torino, and Dodge Coronet) predicted that these will be the "big cars of the future."[7] By 1978, General Motors made its intermediate models smaller.[8]
In keeping with the Prius becoming more mainstream, the numeral-based trim levels have been replaced with a more familiar structure of names including L Eco, LE, XLE and Limited. Of these, the AWD-e will be offered only in the midgrade trims. As with the previous model, the 2019 Prius will continue to receive an ample list of standard advanced safety features bundled in the Toyota Safety Sense P suite.
Along with updated styling, the Prius grew for 2016, increasing cargo space. A new platform improved handling and ride. Though output from the carryover engine decreased slightly, thanks to lighter hybrid components fuel mileage estimates increased to 54 mpg in the city and 50 mpg on the highway; an Eco version was even more efficient. Lithium-ion batteries are now used on some variations. Six trim levels are offered. 
A mid-size car— also known as intermediate— is a vehicle size class which originated in the United States and is used for cars that are larger than compact cars, but smaller than full-size cars.[1] The equivalent European category is D-segment, which is also called "large family car". Mid-size cars are manufactured in a variety of body styles, including sedans, coupes, station wagons, hatchbacks and convertibles.
In constructing the Prius, Toyota used a new range of plant-derived ecological bioplastics, made out of cellulose derived from wood or grass instead of petroleum. The two principal crops used are kenaf and ramie. Kenaf is a member of the hibiscus family, a relative to cotton and okra; ramie, commonly known as China grass, is a member of the nettle family and one of the strongest natural fibres, with a density and absorbency comparable to flax. Toyota says this is a particularly timely breakthrough for plant-based eco-plastics because 2009 is the United Nations' International Year of Natural Fibres, which spotlights kenaf and ramie among others.[62]
The Second Generation Prius contains a 1.310 kWh battery, composed of 28 modules. Each battery module is made of 6 individual 1.2 V 6.5 Ah Prismatic NiMH cells in series forming a 7.2 V 6.5 Ah module with 46 Wh/kg energy density and 1.3 kW/kg output power density.[167] Each module contains an integrated charge controller and relay. These modules are connected 28 in series to form a 201.6 V 6.5 Ah battery (traction battery), also known as the energy storage system. The computer controlled charge controller and battery management computer systems keep this battery between 38% and 82% state of charge, with a tendency to keep the average state of charge around 60%. By shallow cycling the battery only a small portion of its net available energy storage capacity is available for use (approximately 400 Wh) by the hybrid drive system, but the shallow computer controlled cycling dramatically improves the cycle life, thermal management control, and net long term calendar life of the battery. Active cooling of this battery is achieved by a blower motor and air ducting, while passive thermal management was accomplished through the metal case design.
The Wall Street Journal reported in February 2007 on concerns that quiet cars like the Prius may pose a safety risk to those who rely on engine noise to sense the presence or location of moving vehicles.[197] Blind pedestrians are a primary concern, and the National Federation of the Blind advocates audio emitters on hybrid vehicles,[198] but it has been argued that increased risks may also affect sighted pedestrians or bicyclists who are accustomed to aural cues from vehicles. However, silent vehicles are already relatively common, and there is also a lack of aural cues from vehicles that have a conventional internal combustion engine where engine noise has been reduced by noise-absorbing materials in the engine bay and noise-canceling muffler systems. In July 2007, a spokesman for Toyota said the company is aware of the issue and is studying options.[199]