First of all, a HUGE thank you to Toyota of Long Beach20 minutes ago
Rising oil prices caused by the Arab Spring led to increased sales of the Prius in the first quarter of 2011, but the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami led to a production stoppage. Production restarted several days later, but output was hindered due to shortages from parts suppliers. Nevertheless, during the 2011 Japanese fiscal year (1 April 2011 through 31 March 2012), the Prius family sold 310,484 units, including sales of the Prius α, launched in May 2011, and the Toyota Aqua, launched in December, allowing the Prius brand to become the best-selling vehicle in Japan for the third-consecutive year.
Entering its seventh year of production for 2019, the Ford Fusion remains a midsize-car favorite thanks to its nicely trimmed interior, advanced Sync 3 infotainment system and spirited driving character. The Fusion isn't a performance sedan, but it corners with confidence and doesn't mind a sprint now and then. The V6-powered Sport model is a gem if you want swift acceleration, but most drivers will appreciate the fuel savings afforded by the trio of four-cylinder engines, particularly the turbocharged 1.5-liter version. To minimize fuel costs, consider the Fusion Hybrid (42 mpg combined) or the Fusion Energi, a plug-in hybrid that can cover about 20 miles on a full electric charge before the gas engine takes over. This is nearly the end of the Fusion as we know it; Ford is likely to phase out the sedan after 2020, possibly reusing the name for a new SUV. See the Fusion in our Sedan rankings
The Prius offers little in the way of driving enjoyment and refinement. Still, the steering effort is pleasingly weighted, and responses to your inputs are accurate—making the handling feel almost lively. Feedback from the road is non-existent, though, and feels numb on-center. Braking is a common gremlin for hybrid vehicles, which use a mix of regenerative and friction braking. Inconsistent or numb feedback from the pedal, as we experienced in the Prius, is often the trade-off and, combined with the low-rolling-resistance tires that most hybrids wear, can make for longer braking distances in our testing than we would expect from other similar-size non-hybrid vehicles.
The large number of Prius-owning progressive celebrities in 2002 prompted The Washington Post to dub hybrids "Hollywood's latest politically correct status symbol". Conservatives called "Prius Patriots" also drive the cars because they want to contribute to reducing US dependence on foreign oil. A 2007 San Francisco Chronicle article said "Prius Progressives" were becoming an archetype, with American conservative commentator Rush Limbaugh opining that "these liberals think they're ahead of the game on these things, and they're just suckers".
Stepping up to the XLE trim brings 17-inch wheels, automatic wipers, keyless entry for the front passenger door and rear hatch, SofTex simulated leather upholstery and wrapped steering wheel, a power-adjustable driver's seat, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a semi-gloss black center console and a wireless charging pad. It also reverts back to the tire inflation kit.
As of April 2011, the US accounted for almost half of Prius liftback global sales, with 1 million Priuses sold since 2000. However, the Prius experienced two consecutive years of sales decreases from its peak in 2007, falling to 139,682 units in 2009 before rebounding to 140,928 units in 2010. Sales in Japan reached 1 million Priuses in August 2011. As of January 2017, sales of the Prius liftback totaled over 1.8 million units in Japan and 1.75 million in the United States, and ranked as the all-time best-selling hybrid car in both countries.
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 Audi A6 has been redesigned for 2019 with an emphasis on evolutionary improvements. Like its predecessor, the new A6 delivers space, technology, luxury and performance in spades, but it's more refined and advanced than ever. Most of the changes for 2019 center on the A6's technology offerings, including additional advanced driver safety aids and a new dual-touchscreen interface that replaces the old knob-based MMI system. Equipped with a velvety-smooth turbocharged V6, the A6 won't leave you pining for more acceleration, although you may find yourself wanting a softer ride. With its typically European sporting bias, the all-wheel-drive A6 rides a tad firmer than some shoppers might prefer, but it's a remarkably well-rounded car overall. See the A6 in our Sedan rankings
With mild, medium and hot versions, the Lexus GS lineup achieves a synthesis of comfort, luxury and performance. The GS 300 serves as the entry point with its turbocharged four-cylinder engine, with the next rung up occupied by the V6-powered GS 350. The GS F — with its brawny, old-school V8 (no turbo, thank you) — is a welcome foil to the high-performance turbocharged offerings from BMW and Mercedes. Regardless of powertrain, GS models feature top-quality interiors, a generous list of standard features, and sporty steering and handling. Unfortunately, the GS is plagued by an awkward infotainment interface that requires too much driver attention to operate, as well as subpar smartphone integration. But these are hardly deal-breakers since the GS compensates with cosseting luxury and a healthy dose of sport at a reasonable price. See the GS in our Sedan rankings
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.
The Nissan Altima is newly redesigned, and it shines. It’s got two new engines with continuously variable automatic transmission, plus the option of all-wheel drive ($25,250) — even better: it’s sporty. But if you want an even sportier version, choose the SR model, with 19-inch wheels and a 248-horsepower engine ($25,250). It’s also got Android Auto standard, but unfortunately no hybrid option.