According to Toyota, the "c" in the Prius c's name stands for "city." It also could stand for "cheap." The newest, tiniest addition to the Prius family will start at $18,950 when it goes on sale next month. The subcompact hybrid joins the original Prius compact hatchback and larger, new-for-2012 Prius v wagon.
Its price isn't the only attractive number. The four-door hatchback's 73-horsepower, 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine and 60-hp electric motor should return excellent fuel economy. The EPA estimates it should get 53/46 mpg city/highway. Toyota says it's the "highest rated city fuel economy of any vehicle without a plug."
Four trims, numbered one through four, are offered. Standards include 15-inch steel wheels, automatic climate control, a 3.5-inch color display, an AM/FM/CD stereo with Bluetooth hands-free phone and audio connectivity, a USB port, steering- wheel audio controls, remote keyless entry, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel and nine airbags.
Options include a touch-screen navigation system with SiriusXM Satellite Radio (with a three-month trial subscription) and Entune. The latter feature interfaces with a smartphone's internet-radio applications and other functions.
Here’s the price breakdown (excluding the $760 destination fee) for each model:
Prius c One: $18,950
Prius c Two: $19,900
Prius c Three: $21,635
Prius c Four: $23,230