Review: 2014 Toyota Prius V

Posted by Motorama in Vehicle Reviews

It’s designed for families, and what families do everyday plus being an economical and environmentally friendly alternative to traditional 7 seat SUV’s and 4WD’s. Even though the Prius V isn’t ready to go off-road, it has the ability to do everything else extremely well.

Powering the Prius V is a 1.8L engine connected to their latest generation hybrid drive technology. This provides a total combined power output of 173kW and a claimed fuel economy figure of just 4.4L/100km.

There are two models available, the Prius V and the Prius V i-Tech, with the most notable differences between the two being a number of extra safety and comfort features. Power and fuel economy remains unchanged.

Pricing for the 2014 Toyota Prius V starts from just under $40,000 drive away for the base model, which makes it one of the most affordable 7 seat wagons on the market. The question is can it hold its own on the road?

Initial Impression

The Prius V has big dimensions and reminds you that it has been designed for interior cabin space and ease of getting in and out of that space. Whilst it may not be a sporty car, aerodynamics are a massive influence over the design of the Prius V and its aim to save as much fuel as possible.

The less air it has to cut through, the less fuel you will use.

On the inside the cloth seats in our entry-level model are some of the best on the market. They’re incredible comfortable and could be easily enjoyed for a long road-trip holiday.

For the driver the large display and quick to access functions of the car make managing the comfort levels of the entire family nice and easy. In the back there are miles of room, even for the tallest of adults in the second row.

It’s easy to see why they have been so widely adopted by Taxi drivers. It’s the mix of reliability, low running costs and comfort that makes the Prius V so popular amongst those who drive more kilometres than anybody else on the road.

Drivability

After getting acquainted with our Prius V review vehicle, we slipped away in total silence thanks to the electric batteries. These electric batteries will let you travel or cruise along for a short distance using no fuel at all.

Just like the other Prius models, there is no need to plug-in when the battery is flat. The traditional combustion engine kicks in to provide a boost to acceleration or extra power to recharge the batteries. You can also recharge the batteries when rolling or braking too.

Normally peak hour traffic is the worst thing for a car and its fuel economy, but we found in the case of the Prius V, the small amounts of acceleration and braking meant that our fuel usage was non-existent.

After some time it becomes a game thanks to all of the data that the Prius V serves you from instant fuel economy, individual fuel economy figures for the multiple trip counters, eco savings, total trip cost using the last fuel price you entered and more.

Regardless of the traffic, we found ourselves wanting to try and beat our last fuel economy score, and with our best of 2.1L/100km, it was certainly hard to beat. Overall for our 400km review, our average fuel economy was an impressive 3.8L/100km including a good mix of highway and urban travel.

In addition to the excellent fuel economy, a feature that was unexpected, but something we loved was the inclusion of a heads-up display to show information like your current speed, navigation instructions and more to the driver. It’s great for safety as it is one less reason to need to take your eyes off the road.

If travelling with a full car of passengers, the soft ride still allowed most bumps to be absorbed by the suspension, short of a few creaks and noises from the body typical of a wagon this size. Even navigating tight car parks was easier than expected with the inclusion of a reverse camera and electric power steering.

Liveability​

The Prius V isn’t the car that you choose to turn up to a red carpet event; it’s the super comfy pair of track pants you wear at home on a Sunday night.

In our day-to-day activities, we never found the Prius V to come up short. Starting at the front seats, there is plenty of comfort and the selection storage areas to hide bits and pieces are generous.

In the second row, you can comfortably fit three child seats across if you need. Older kids will appreciate the extra shoulder and legroom that you won’t normally find even in a SUV or 4WD.

Lastly in the rear, the third row isn’t adult friendly, but the extra seats are very handy if you need to squeeze in a couple more of the kids football team in. You can even still fit their bags and all in the boot with the 3rd row up!

Cost​

The Prius V is an excellent consideration if you want a 7-seat vehicle, don’t want to spend much on fuel or servicing. Starting from under $40,000 drive away for the entry-level model it is one of the most affordable 7 seat wagons available on the market.

Starting from $50,000, the Prius V i-Tech adds some cool features including adaptive cruise control and a pre-collision safety system that uses a front-facing radar sensor to alert the driver of a danger ahead. Plus there’s a panoramic sunroof, leather trim, an eight-speaker JBL premium-audio system, satellite navigation and digital radio.

Both models, depending on what features you want or need, still offer some great value especially when taking the servicing costs into consideration. Toyota’s Service Advantage program ensures that your first 6 standard scheduled services are just $130 each for the first 3 years or 60,00km of ownership.

Warranty wise, there is a 3-year/100,000km warranty included for the vehicle and an 8-year/160,000km warranty for the Hybrid battery. This is great news for peace of mind, and shows Toyota’s commitment to hassle free hybrid driving.

Conclusion

The Prius V left quite an impression on us, and it was quite a good one. We tested it with kids, adults and everything inbetween in a various amount of traffic and road types.

Even in the entry-level Prius V, it offers a great level of comfort and space that will make you wish that you could take the drivers seat into the living room to sit on.

Owning the Prius V is that much better when you also factor in the more than affordable capped price servicing costs, and incredible fuel economy for a vehicle this big. It really is that good, and you would be hard to find a cheaper vehicle to own and run like this.

If you would like to get behind the wheel of a Prius V for yourself, make sure you arrange a test drive at either of our Motorama Toyota dealerships located in Browns Plains or Moorooka.