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LA show: Toyota tweaks Prius C

Micro Eco: American buyers have a choice of four Prius C variants but Australian eco-car fans are likely to have half as many options when the facelifted version touches down next year.

Toyota's frugal Prius C hatch gets mild work-over ahead of arrival early 2015


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20 Nov 2014

TOYOTA has added a little spit and polish to its baby hybrid Prius C hatch with a mid-life facelift, interior refresh and dusting of optional extra kit, ahead of its Australian arrival early next year.

Unveiled at the Los Angeles motor show, the Japanese car-maker's most fuel efficient vehicle has been given a new set of lights with LED projector headlamps and “light pipe” tail lights to freshen its looks along with a new choice of exterior colours.

Interiors have also had a update with new colour and theme choices on offer, and from mid-range Prius C Two, piano black highlights and two-tone Dark Blue Gray on Dark Charcoal seat fabric can be specified.

The top of the range Prius C Four variant now has a reverse camera and a moon roof as standard, while steel-wheeled variants have a redesigned hub-cap.

In addition to the new equipment, all variants have air-conditioning, keyless entry, multi-function steering wheel, Bluetooth and a colour multi-function screen, which displays a variety of vehicle and economical driving information.

Prius C Two standard equipment that carries over from the previous version includes 60/40 split rear seats, height-adjustable driver's seat, upgraded speaker system and cruise control.

Moving up to the Prius C Three adds the Entune package which brings a larger 6.1-inch touchscreen, and Toyota's App Suite which gives users access to smartphone applications via the cars interface, as well as a variety of online services.

Entune can be added as a costed option to lesser variants.

The Three variant also has 15-inch alloy wheels, keyless start and a duplicate display on the instrument cluster to reduce driver distraction.

Top of the range Prius C Four has imitation leather seat upholstery with heaters in the front seats and 16-inch alloy wheels.

Its hybrid system with 1.5-litre petrol engine is unchanged with fuel consumption figures unlikely to differ from its current frugal performance of 3.9-litres per 100km.

American versions of the Prius C are on offer in four different levels of equipment, but Australian variants are likely to stick to the current recipe of just two with Base and i-Tech.

Toyota Australia could not confirm exact local specifications saying more details and performance figures would be available closer to the launch in the first quarter of next year.

Toyota Australia will be looking to invigorate sales of its smallest hybrid, which have slipped 29.3 per cent from last year with year to date sales at 1430, down from 2022 to the end of October 2013.

On Australian turf, the current entry level Prius C costs $23,990 before on-road costs, while kit-boosted i-Tech has a $26,990 price tag.

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