Based on Toyota Prius Base
Now in its fifth year since a major redesign, the Toyota Prius is still the only dedicated hybrid model in America and remains the most fuel-efficient car. It is powered by Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive, in which an electric motor and gasoline engine work in concert to achieve maximum effici... Read Full Report
What We Like
What We Don't Like
Editor's note: This review was written in January 2008 about the 2008 Toyota Prius. Little of substance has changed with this year's model. To see what's new for 2009, click here, or check out a side-by-side comparison of the two model years.I've returned to the Toyota Prius four years after my initial review, and it's still more than viable despite its age and all the ... Read full review for the 2009 Toyota Prius
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Reporting on the 2006 Prius, I noted surging on the freeway (unless cruise control used) and a rear seat with compromised headroom. Both items have been addressed. The surge is not showing up in the 2... Read Full Review
Service & Repair
Roadside Assistance Coverage
What you should get in your warranty can be confusing. Make sure you are informed.
Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.
Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.
Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).
Free Scheduled Maintenance
Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.
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