2016 Toyota Prius c

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Key Specs
Our Take
Safety & Recalls
Warranty & CPO
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Key Specs

of the 2016 Toyota Prius c. Base trim shown.

  • Body Type:
  • Combined MPG:
    50 Combined MPG
  • Engine:
    73-hp, 1.5-liter I-4 (regular gas)
  • Drivetrain:
    Front-wheel Drive
  • Transmission:
    2-speed CVT w/OD
  • View more specs

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Fuel economy
  • Lower price than regular Prius
  • Hatchback versatility
  • Easy-to-use multimedia system

The Bad

  • Highway acceleration
  • Road noise
  • Unnatural-feeling brakes
  • Backup camera only available on top trim level

Notable Features of the 2016 Toyota Prius c

  • New active safety features available
  • New Special Edition limited to 1,500 units
  • Smallest Prius version
  • Gas/electric hybrid
  • 50-mpg combined EPA rating
  • Seats up to five

What Is the 2016 Toyota Prius c?

The 2016 Toyota Prius c is a subcompact hybrid hatchback that competes with the Hyundai Accent, Ford Fiesta, Chevrolet Sonic, Honda Civic Hybrid and Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid. Available trim levels include the One, Two, Persona Series, Three and Four. The mid-size Prius and slightly larger Prius v are covered separately.

What's New on the 2016 Toyota Prius c?

The Toyota Safety Sense C active safety system is available for 2016 and includes automatic high-beam headlights, a precollision system and lane departure warning. In addition, a new Special Edition features black exterior paint with either Cherry Pearl or Electric Lime accents throughout the vehicle, as well as 15-inch black-painted wheels. This model is limited to 1,500 units.

How Does the 2016 Toyota Prius c Compare to Other Subcompact Hybrids?

The 2016 Toyota Prius c earns better fuel economy numbers than the Jetta Hybrid and Civic Hybrid, and there's more room for cargo thanks to its hatchback body style. However, both competitors offer more rear legroom than the Prius c.

What Features in the 2016 Toyota Prius c Are Most important?

All 2016 Toyota Prius c models are powered by a 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine and electric motor which combine for 99 total horsepower. Front-wheel drive and a continuously variable automatic transmission are included in all trims as well. Significant standard features include automatic air conditioning, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel, remote keyless entry and power side mirrors. As with all new cars, the Prius c includes front airbags, an electronic stability system and antilock brakes.

Significant available features include a navigation system, a split-folding backseat, a power moonroof, cruise control, heated front seats and heated side mirrors.

Should I Buy the 2016 Toyota Prius c?

The 2016 Toyota Prius c stands out for its excellent fuel economy, intuitive multimedia system and practical hatchback design. In addition, it has a lower starting price than the standard Prius. However, excessive road noise, choppy regenerative braking and a lack of passing power can make highway driving a challenge. While a backup camera is available, it can be added only at the top trim level.

Cars.com's Editorial department is your source for automotive news and reviews. In line with Cars.com's long-standing ethics policy, editors and reviewers don't accept gifts or free trips from automakers. The Editorial department is independent of Cars.com's advertising, sales and sponsored content departments.

2016 Toyota Prius c Overview

by Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview

The subcompact Prius c is a smaller alternative to the regular Prius and Prius v. C stands for "city," and the Prius c is a ... Read More

Latest 2016 Prius c Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value For The Money

What Drivers Are Saying


Don't burn gas while stuck in traffic.

by LessIsMore from Sacramento on July 16, 2018

This car is ideal for someone for someone who's commute time is mostly driving slow or with lots of idle time. When I first got this car, I had a 6 mile round trip to work and back all on surface ... Read full review


The best car I have ever owned.

by rizhard@gmail.com from Bellevue on July 9, 2018

It is a very reliable car with little to no maintenance. In addition, it is extremely fuel efficient which saves huge over the time. It is usually very quiet. Although it is only 100 horse power, when ... Read full review

Safety & Recalls


The 2016 Toyota Prius c currently has 0 recalls

IIHS Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

Based on 2016 Toyota Prius c One

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

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
Overall Rear
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry

Moderate overlap front

Left Leg/Foot
Overall Front
Right Leg/Foot
Structure/safety cage


Roof Strength


Driver Head Protection
Driver Head and Neck
Driver Pelvis/Leg
Driver Torso
Overall Side
Rear Passenger Head Protection
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
Rear Passenger Torso
Structure/safety cage

Small Overlap Front - Driver Side

Lower Leg/Foot
Overall Evaluation
Restraints and Dummy Kinematics
Structure and Safety Cage
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 / unlimited distance

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


  • 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 c 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