Toyota definitely isn’t sitting on its laurels where hybrid cars are concerned. To compete with other electric cars like the Chevrolet Volt and the Ford Focus Electric, the 2012 Toyota Prius Plug-In gives car buyers a higher-mileage vehicle with really great fuel efficiency.
Much like other 2012 Prius models, the Prius Plug-In includes a number of features and options, including the Solar Roof package, which comes with more than just an electric moon roof – it also includes remote air conditioning so you can get your car cool before you get in.
Running on electric power alone, the Prius Plug-In can reach 11-13 city miles, and then it will revert to hybrid mode. And, if you need to get somewhere quickly, you can give it an extra gas boost by turning on Power mode.
What We Like
It takes only three hours to fully charge the battery, which means you can run on all-electric power if you live within 13 miles of work or school and you have charging capabilities at both locations. Even if you can’t run on all-electric power, you can definitely use it to increase your fuel efficiency.
What Concerns Us
The battery pack for the Prius Plug-In is much heavier and more expensive than the battery pack for regular Prius models. The increased price and weight might make this model less attractive to some buyers.
While different trim packages are available for the 2012 Toyota Prius Plug-In, all models have the same package under the hood:
- Engine – 1.8-liter 4-cylinder with a 60kW electric motor
- Power – 134 HP (net system)
- Torque – 105 lb-ft (gas engine), 153 lb-ft (electric motor)
- Fuel economy (city/hwy) – 51/48 MPG (hybrid mode), 95/50 MPGe (plug-in hybrid mode)
Some 2012 Toyota Prius Plug-In models have been recalled due to an issue with the inverter, which may damage transistors at higher operating temperatures. This issue can be addressed at any Toyota dealership at no charge to the owner.
Some drivers complain that the touch screen is prone to glare, and others complain that the driver is locked out of most calling and navigation functions when the vehicle is in motion. These are not universal issues, though, and may depend a great deal on the driver.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as A Buyer’s Guide to the 2012 Toyota Prius Plug-In and was authored by Valerie Johnston.