2013 Toyota Prius

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Key Specs
Our Take
Overview
Photos
Reviews
Safety & Recalls
Warranty & CPO
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Key Specs

of the 2013 Toyota Prius. Base trim shown.

  • Body Type:
  • Combined MPG:
    50 Combined MPG
  • Engine:
    98-hp, 1.8-liter I-4 (regular gas)
  • Drivetrain:
    Front-wheel Drive
  • Transmission:
    2-speed CVT w/OD
  • View more specs

Our Take

Cars.com trophy.

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Gas mileage
  • Roomy interior
  • High-tech options
  • Forward visibility
  • Hatchback versatility

The Bad

  • Braking feel
  • Balky acceleration
  • Noise
  • Blind spots
  • Ride and handling

Notable Features of the 2013 Toyota Prius

  • Gas/electric drivetrain
  • 50 mpg combined
  • Available Entune multimedia system
  • Four driving modes
  • New Special Edition model

2013 Toyota Prius Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview

Toyota calls its Prius an "Eco-Icon," and the latest generation should have plenty of available gadgets for technological and environmental die-hards. Among them are a solar-panel moonroof that powers modest air conditioning in hot parking lots and LED headlights that use less energy than conventional halogen lamps. The five-seat Prius competes with Honda's Insight hybrid, and indirectly against Volkswagen's Jetta TDI diesel.

The Prius v, Prius c and Prius Plug-In are covered in separate reports in the Cars.com Research section.


New for 2013
A Special Edition version features a new Black Cherry Pearl exterior color, 17-inch alloy wheels and charcoal-colored seats with black accents and dark red stitching.

Exterior

Exterior features include:

  • Standard 15-inch wheels; 17-inch wheels optional
  • Standard LED taillamps use less power
  • Available power tilt/sliding moonroof with solar-powered ventilation
  • Available dealer-installed Plus Performance Package with unique design cues and suspension revisions

Interior
The dashboard has instruments mounted high atop the center portion, two glove compartments and a nublike shifter. The shifter itself sits close to knee level. The dash and doors have a matte-style finish, and the steering wheel has tilt and telescoping adjustments.

The steering wheel has touch-sensitive audio and climate controls, and the instrument display shows a replica of the actual controls when they're touched. Toyota calls it Touch Tracer, clai...

Vehicle Overview

Toyota calls its Prius an "Eco-Icon," and the latest generation should have plenty of available gadgets for technological and environmental die-hards. Among them are a solar-panel moonroof that powers modest air conditioning in hot parking lots and LED headlights that use less energy than conventional halogen lamps. The five-seat Prius competes with Honda's Insight hybrid, and indirectly against Volkswagen's Jetta TDI diesel.

The Prius v, Prius c and Prius Plug-In are covered in separate reports in the Cars.com Research section.


New for 2013
A Special Edition version features a new Black Cherry Pearl exterior color, 17-inch alloy wheels and charcoal-colored seats with black accents and dark red stitching.

Exterior

Exterior features include:

  • Standard 15-inch wheels; 17-inch wheels optional
  • Standard LED taillamps use less power
  • Available power tilt/sliding moonroof with solar-powered ventilation
  • Available dealer-installed Plus Performance Package with unique design cues and suspension revisions

Interior
The dashboard has instruments mounted high atop the center portion, two glove compartments and a nublike shifter. The shifter itself sits close to knee level. The dash and doors have a matte-style finish, and the steering wheel has tilt and telescoping adjustments.

The steering wheel has touch-sensitive audio and climate controls, and the instrument display shows a replica of the actual controls when they're touched. Toyota calls it Touch Tracer, claiming it helps drivers keep their eyes on the road. Other information on the display includes fuel and energy consumption meters, as well as a depiction of power flow between the drivetrain's gasoline and electric components. Interior features include:

  • Standard fabric upholstery; leather optional
  • Optional heated front seats
  • Optional navigation system
  • Optional Entune multimedia system

Under the Hood
The 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine in the Prius is augmented by a number of high-efficiency tricks — among them an electric water pump, exhaust gas recovery, an efficient automatic transmission and optimized regenerative braking. Coupled with an electric motor, the drivetrain makes a total 134 horsepower. Mechanical features include:

  • Can drive on electric-only power, gasoline power or a combination of the two
  • No need to plug car into a wall outlet
  • Electric motor draws power from a rear-mounted battery that recharges using braking friction
  • Four driving modes: regular Drive; Eco mode, which optimizes settings for better mileage; Power mode, which increases gas-pedal sensitivity for better acceleration; and EV-Drive mode, which attempts to stay in electric mode as long as possible, provided the battery has enough power.

Safety
Safety features include:

  • Seven standard airbags, including a driver's knee airbag, front seat-mounted side-impact airbags, and front and rear side curtain airbags
  • Standard active head restraints for the front seats
  • Standard all-disc antilock brakes, traction control and an electronic stability system
  • Optional radar-based adaptive cruise control
  • Optional lane departure prevention system
  • Optional precollision system

Latest 2013 Prius Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(4.5)
Performance
(4.5)
Interior Design
(4.5)
Comfort
(4.5)
Reliability
(4.8)
Value For The Money
(4.6)

What Drivers Are Saying

(5.0)

Most valued car I have had

by Evelyn from Milpitas on September 20, 2018

The car met all my needs. Also, it has the top interior equipments gps, leather seats, and everything. I test driving and sat it. The car is pretty good. Read full review

(5.0)

Awesome Car

by Sundevil4 from Anthem, AZ on August 19, 2018

I love this car. It is extremely economical and thoughtfully designed. It has surprisingly a lot of rear leg room space for my teenage boys and the tech of the car is really cool. Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2013 Toyota Prius currently has 1 recall

IIHS Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

Based on 2013 Toyota Prius Two

IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal, or poor.

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
good
Overall Rear
good
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
good

Moderate overlap front

Chest
good
Head/Neck
acceptable
Left Leg/Foot
good
Overall Front
good
Restraints
good
Right Leg/Foot
good
Structure/safety cage
good

Other

Roof Strength
good

Side

Driver Head Protection
good
Driver Head and Neck
good
Driver Pelvis/Leg
good
Driver Torso
good
Overall Side
good
Rear Passenger Head Protection
good
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
good
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
good
Rear Passenger Torso
good
Structure/safety cage
acceptable
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers.

Manufacturer Warranties

Backed by Toyota
New Car Program Benefits
  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    36 months / 36,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    60 months / 60,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    24 months / 25,000 miles

Certified Pre-Owned Program Benefits
  • Maximum Age/Mileage

    7 years/less than 85,000 miles

  • Basic Warranty Terms

    12 months/12, 000 miles

  • Powertrain warranty

    7 years/100,000 miles

  • Dealer Certification Required

    160- or 174-point inspections

  • Roadside Assistance

    Yes

  • View All Program Details

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Prius received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

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.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

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.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

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).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

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.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker