Toyota Prius Prime
STATUS: One more person can ride along for 2020 - The plug-in Prius Prime hybrid's major accomplishment is that it can remain in electric-only mode regardless of how hard you push the accelerator. Many other plug-in competitors require you to baby the accelerator to avoid activating the 1.8-liter internal-combustion engine. The secret is a lithium-ion battery pack that has 12 times the capacity of the Prius Eco's batteries. In fact, the Prime can reach 84 mph on electric propulsion. Toyota claims a maximum EV distance of 25 miles, with a maximum overall range of 600 miles. Although the batteries weigh more than the standard Prius's package, greater use of lighter materials in the Prime's construction results in a mere 77-pound weight penalty. Both hybrids share the same architecture, engines and motors, but there are plenty of obvious design differences between the two. Inside, an optional 11.6-inch info-/system display screen dominates the dashboard. For 2020, Toyota redesigned the Prime's rear seat so that it can now accommodate three passengers instead of two.
Base price (incl. destination): $28,600
Type: Four-door midsize hatchback
Engine (h.p.): 1.8-liter I-4 with electric motor (121, net)
Transmission: Continuously variable (CVT)
Base mpg (city/highway/combined): 54/50/52 (133 mpg equivalent in EV mode, combined)
Base weight (lb.): 3,370