2012 Toyota Prius: What's New

For the 2012 model year, the Toyota Prius gets slight revisions to its exterior and adds more standard equipped and a new multimedia system. It is expected to hit dealers late this year.

The front gets a redesigned bumper with more stylized lower openings on each end, now filled with new standard LED automatic daytime running lights. The fog lights, when equipped, have been moved to the lower grille. The front and rear lamp designs are redesigned, too.

The 2012 Prius will be widely available in the numerically named Two, Three, Four and Five trim levels. There likely will be an unadvertised Prius One trim, too. Last year, Toyota said the Prius One was primarily sold to fleet customers but could be bought at retail, though availability was extremely rare.

For 2012, the Two trim gets redesigned 15-inch wheels, a revised multi-information display and, most importantly, a standard 6.1-inch touch-screen display that includes a USB port and Bluetooth phone connectivity and audio streaming.

The Three trim now has a standard navigation system with integrated backup camera; previously it was an option. The Three also gets Toyota’s new Entune multimedia system. The passive entry system has been upgraded to work with three doors on the vehicle instead of just one.

The Four trim now has the standard navigation, too, along with Toyota’s new SofTex upholstery, a leatherette material the carmaker says is as durable as cloth and more environmentally friendly to produce than leather. There’s also a new eight-way power driver’s seat (up from six) and a redesigned eight-speaker JBL stereo.

The Five trim gets no new updates, excluding the features that were added to the Three and Four trims. The trim tops the lineup with automatic LED headlamps and 17-inch alloy wheels. Head-up display, premium navigation, adaptive cruise control, lane mitigation software and a pre-collision warning system are available on the Five trim only.

Toyota hasn’t released pricing for the 2012 Prius yet. There are nearly 6,000 2011 Prius models in Cars.com's new car inventory.

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