Toyota Prius c, Prius v Get Styling and Tech Updates for 2015

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Toyota has unveiled restyled versions of its Prius c subcompact hatchback and Prius v wagon for the 2015 model year. The Prius v hits dealerships in December with a slightly lower starting price of $27,500, including the destination charge. Estimated gas mileage for the cars is unchanged at 53/46/50 mpg city/highway/combined for the Prius c and 44/40/42 mpg for the Prius v.

Related: More 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show Coverage

The 2015 Prius c has new LED headlights as part of the standard equipment list, but the car’s face is dominated by a new hexagon grille with available piano-black finish. It also gets LED taillights with integrated light pipes. New LED fog lights go on the upscale Four trim level.

By Mike Hanley | November 19, 2014 | Comments (3)

2013 Toyota Prius v: Family Review Checklist

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There are four members of Toyota's Prius lineup, but the 2013 Toyota Prius v is the most utilitarian by far. This hybrid wagon is 5.3 inches longer than the Prius and more than an inch wider, making it a good fit for family duty.

While the smaller Prius embraces its funky, future-car status, the Prius v's monochromatic, minimalist interior paired with its under-the-radar exterior feels less distinctive. The Prius v is super functional when it comes to family life, but I missed having some ambiance.

The Prius v uses the same engine setup as the Prius: a 98-horsepower, 1.8-liter four-cylinder paired with an 80-hp electric motor. Gas mileage is what really counts with hybrids. The Prius v gets an EPA-estimated 44/40/42 mpg city/highway/combined. In my weeklong test drive, I averaged 40.9 mpg. The smaller Prius gets 51/48/50 mpg.

By Sara Lacey | November 13, 2013 | Comments (0)

Toyota to Build 20 New Hybrids Globally by End of 2015

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In less than three years, Toyota will have 20 new or redesigned hybrids worldwide — plus a hydrogen fuel-cell car. That's what Bob Carter, who heads automotive operations at Toyota's U.S. arm, told reporters this morning. Carter spoke at the National Automobile Dealers Association/J.D. Power and Associates' 2013 Automotive Forum on the eve of this week's 2013 New York International Auto Show.

More 2013 New York Auto Show Coverage

Despite the proliferation — if not the sales — of electric cars, Toyota believes "hybrids will remain a core technology" because they can be adapted to other environmental areas, Carter said. Given the number of cars from Toyota and its Lexus and Scion divisions, 20 hybrids seems like a more attainable goal than the automaker's gas-electric gauntlet thrown in 2006, which declared that every forthcoming redesign would include a hybrid version. Toyota backed off that pledge two years later.

By Kelsey Mays | March 26, 2013 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 3,235 2009-13 Toyotas

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Southeast Toyota Distributors is recalling 3,235 vehicles spanning model-years 2009-13 due to problems with the occupant sensing system, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The affected vehicles were modified by Southeast Toyota Distributors to include accessories such as leather seat covers, seat heaters or head-restraint DVD system. During the installation process, the passenger seat occupant sensing system may not have been tested. This could cause the airbags to not deploy or to deploy inappropriately for the passenger's size, increasing the risk of injury. 

By Jennifer Geiger | January 28, 2013 | Comments (2)

Car Talk: What's the Ugliest Car?

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Just as a person's beauty is only skin deep, a car's is in the eye of the pink-slip holder. Still, there's just no denying that some have a face only an owner could love. Tom and Ray Magliozzi, the hosts of NPR's "Car Talk" radio show, solicited input online to determine the ugliest automobile currently in production.

Based on the nominations received, the field was narrowed to 10: Chevrolet Spark, Fiat Multipla, Infiniti QX56, Kia Soul, Lincoln MKT, Mitsubishi i-MiEV, Nissan Cube, Nissan Juke (photo above), Toyota Prius v and the Smart ForTwo. At last check, the Multipla was trouncing the uncomely competition with nearly 39% of the vote. Its nearest opponent is the Juke with nearly 26%; the balance of the nominees' vote tallies were in the single digits.

Is the Multipla being unfairly maligned in the face of an uglier opponent? Or perhaps you wish to contribute to the pile-on? Click here to cast your vote.

Related
Car Talk: Top 20 Signs You Should Avoid a Garage
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Top 10 Ugly Cars
By Matt Schmitz | January 23, 2013 | Comments (15)

December's Fastest- and Slowest-Selling Cars

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Automakers won't report December sales results until later today, but we have data on the month's fastest and slowest sellers. The redesigned Toyota Avalon hit dealerships in the first week of December, and it stormed the fastest-selling list, with regular and hybrid versions averaging just eight days apiece on dealer lots. Shoppers moved toward the Ford F-Series Super Duty pickup truck, too. That’s likely a result of an improved construction market; November housing starts hit their second highest rate since mid-2008.

The redesigned Mercedes-Benz GL-Class, which hit dealerships in September, spent its third month among the fastest sellers; the new-for-2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek also marked its third month on the list. Of the 18 fastest-selling cars, 10 were repeat performers, with such regulars as the redesigned Subaru Impreza and new Scion FR-S. The Kia Soul's severe mileage downgrade doesn't seem to have sapped demand, and neither has the popular hatchback's age. It debuted way back in early 2009, but in December it placed among the fastest sellers for the third month in a row.

By Kelsey Mays | January 3, 2013 | Comments (3)

Honda Shines, Toyota Falls in Latest IIHS Crash Tests

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The 2013 Toyota Camry sedan and Prius v hybrid (above, right) failed a new crash test by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety that simulates a frontal impact overlapping a small portion of the car — say, piling into a tree from your left headlight. IIHS announced today its test of 18 model-year 2013 family cars. It's the largest yet for the so-called "small overlap" frontal test that many luxury brands failed in August 2012.

At the other end, the Honda Accord sedan and nearly-defunct Suzuki Kizashi (above, left) earned IIHS' top score, Good; 11 other cars — including the Accord coupe — earned Acceptable ratings. The IIHS rates cars Good, Acceptable, Marginal or Poor. Of the 18 cars tested, the Toyotas scored Poor, but the Hyundai Sonata, Chevrolet Malibu and Volkswagen Jetta sedan scored Marginal.

By Kelsey Mays | December 19, 2012 | Comments (7)

Toyota's Prius Still MPG Champ

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If you think you see the Toyota Prius everywhere, that's because it is. Sales of Toyota's most popular hybrid are continually strong, undoubtedly propelled by the lure of high fuel economy. However, more automakers have joined the hybrid movement since the Prius' introduction in 2000. Toyota has even expanded the Prius family with the Mini-Me Prius c and puffed-up Prius v.

Is the traditional Prius still on top? We took it on a road trip, and in terms of fuel economy, the answer is a resounding yes.

By Jennifer Geiger | July 30, 2012 | Comments (1)

June's Fastest and Slowest Selling Cars

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Seven all-new cars are off to a fast start. The Cadillac XTS hit dealerships just last month, but GM's flagship luxury car averaged just five days to sell. It tied the Hyundai Accent sedan and Subaru BRZ for June's fastest sellers. The nimble BRZ and its Scion twin, the FR-S, meanwhile, are taking just five and eight days to sell, respectively. Both cars hit dealerships in May.

We should see how many of each model sold in June when sales figures are announced later today.

Ford's redesigned 2013 Escape, Infiniti's new JX35 and two new Acuras — the ILX and redesigned RDX — also made June's Movers. The well-marketed Kia Soul, meanwhile, extended its tenure on the list to three months. Sales for the popular hatchback were up 22% through May. It's the most affordable car on the list, with a starting price (including destination) under $15,000.

By Kelsey Mays | July 3, 2012 | Comments (2)

Daily News Briefs: May 29, 2012

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The Toyota Prius is now the third best-selling car across the globe, according to Bloomberg News. The growth comes from strong sales in both Japan and the United States, Bloomberg News reports. With 247,230 models sold in the first quarter of 2012, the Prius trails only the Ford Focus (277,000) and the Toyota Corolla (300,800); the Corolla remains the best-selling car of all time. Prius sales have nearly doubled over last year on the backs of recent extensions to the Prius-brand lineup like the Prius v, Prius Plug-in and recently launched Prius c (known as the Aqua in Japan). The Toyota Prius remains Japan's top-selling version, with the Toyota Aqua in a close second place. The Prius brand was the fifth best-selling model in the U.S. for April.

In other news:

By Colin Bird | May 29, 2012 | Comments (0)

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