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Toyota tweaks Prius V

Hatched: Toyota has not altered the pricing for its refreshed Prius V range, despite offering more gear and making changes under the skin.

Prius V hybrid people-mover gains tech, comfort update but Toyota maintains pricing


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16 Jun 2015

TOYOTA'S revised Prius V hybrid people-mover has arrived in Australia, with new safety features, and improvements to ride and handling, while prices remain static.

The mid-life update to the model that was introduced Down Under in mid-2012 maintains its $34,490, plus on-road costs, opening price for the base variant, while the more generously equipped i-Tech is still $44,490.

Other similarly positioned seven-seat offerings include Kia's Rondo from $30,240 to $39,740, and the Citroen Grand C4 Picasso from $44,990, both excluding on-road costs.

The additional safety gear over the outgoing model includes a hill-start assist system and a lane-departure alert that has been tuned for Australian roads, featuring a buzzer and visual warning.

On i-Tech variants, the adaptive cruise control has been updated and now includes a vehicle approach warning system, that will display on the multi-information displaying to advise the driver when a vehicle is close, while the pre-collision system now features a brake warning if it detects a potential collision.

Tweaks have been made under the skin to improve noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) levels, as well as ride and comfort.

Redesigned dampers, revised damping force in the mid and high damper velocity range, improved spring characteristics in the trailing arm bushes have all contributed to better ride comfort, handling stability, and NVH performance, according to Toyota.

As reported last year, the Prius V carries revised exterior styling, which includes a new front bumper and headlights (Bi-LED on the i-Tech), vertical LED daytime running lights, and a new upper grille.

At the rear, the Prius V gains new tail-lights, a new bumper with an integrated diffuser and a rear spoiler, and a redesigned licence plate garnish. Two new colours are on offer – Rustic Brown and Eclipse Black.

Inside, the refreshed hybrid hauler gains chrome-plated door handles, slime-line airvents on the centre console with a chrome finish, revised instrument binnacle and an upgraded 4.2-inch colour TFT screen as part of the multi-information display controlled by steering wheel-mounted switches.

A new 'eco judge' function gives a point score for driving style, helping drivers get the most out of the hybrid powertrain.

A pair of new audio systems are new to the Prius V range, attached to a 6.1-inch touchscreen, with Bluetooth functionality across the range. The base variant gets a six-speaker audio system, with USB, auxiliary, and iPod jacks, while the i-Tech features an eight-speaker JBL system with DAB digital radio, voice recognition and navigation.

The i-Tech also gets Toyota Link connected mobility with access to apps that can help locate fuel, weather and roadside services, while buyers can purchase access to the Destination Assist system that connects them with an operator to find a location.

On the i-Tech's audio display screen, users can determine the layout of the display which is split into three sections.

Standard gear includes climate control air-conditioning, head-up display, rearview camera, 16-inch alloy wheels, seven airbags, stability and traction control, a three-piece sliding second-row seat and a 50/50 split third row that folds flat.

It also features front and rear fog-lights, emergency stop lights, keyless entry and start, heated power mirrors, a regenerative brake system, an engine immobiliser, and power lumbar adjustment for the driver's seat.

The i-Tech adds park assist, leather accented trim, heated front seats, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, auto high beam and water-repelling front side glass.

Power continues to come from a 1.8-litre Atkinson cycle petrol engine and a 60kW electric motor, for a combined system output of 100kW, matched with a continuously variable transmission (CVT), for an official combined fuel-use figure of 4.4 litres per 100 kilometres, and CO2 emissions of 101g/km.

Toyota executive director of sales and marketing Tony Cramb highlighted the fuel-efficiency of the seven-seat hybrid when compared with its crossover rivals.

“Prius V offers more cargo space than most small SUVs yet it can travel 100km on less than five litres of fuel,” he said.

“The latest updates are focused on safety, multi-media technology and additional ride comfort while ensuring the comprehensive standard features of Prius v meet the needs of a wide range of buyers.”

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