As EVs continue their trek for world domination, you may wonder if plug-in hybrids are worth keeping around. After all, you retain the maintenance of a gas engine and add the complexity of a hybrid system. Hybrids fall short of BEVs on pure EV range and depending on where you live, it may be hard to find a technician willing to work on it. There are zero shops willing to work on my wife’s Prius in our city of 30,000. For all of those concerns, hybrids still do one thing great.
Patrick George got to drive the new and seriously attractive 2023 Toyota Prius Prime for a week. His tester had up to 39 miles of range from its battery, which isn’t a lot of miles for EV-only running. Yet, it resulted in the car being returned with a tank that was barely even used.
From the perspective of reducing the consumption of fuel, the Prius shows that it’s still relevant, even if it’s not pure EV. Peer into the comments of that article, and you’ll see even more reasons why hybrids still rock:
Nsane In The MembraNe takes the COTD crown today:
I legitimately get excited when I see the new Prius in the wild. What Bizarro world are we living in when I get hyped up to see a Prius? It’s weird and I’m not sure how to feel about it…but boy is it striking in person.
I’ve also said innumerable times that PHEVs are amazing and are the perfect solution for folks in urban environments who need extra range every now and then. I’m not surprised at all that you barely touched the gas tank in the press car. I think around 50 miles of pure EV range is the sweet spot for a lot of people and it seems like it’s more or less what manufacturers are aiming for at this point.
Hell my dad’s new X5 50e has nearly 50 miles of EV range! That’s nuts to me. Anyway if you want to reduce your emissions and save some money without all the BEV comprises PHEVs are great right now. They’re here! They’re available! They don’t cost $60,000…and I remain perplexed as to why we aren’t talking about them more.
As a side note, I love creative usernames and Nsane In The MembraNe definitely gets a smile from me. Matt Haubrich followed it up with another good anecdote:
This summer we did a 3,500 mile road trip in my 2016 X5 PHEV, including a couple of nearly 600mi days. Never could have done it in a pure EV. We were able to charge nearly every night at hotels, which helped with overall fuel economy. Performed really well on rural two-lanes even though it’s only a 4cyl 2.0L gas engine because the electric motor kicked in to aid in passing maneuvers – 55 to 85 in practically no time. Definitely will be looking for another PHEV next time I’m in the market for a new car. Now that I’m back home, I won’t need to visit a gas station for at least a month, since nearly 100% of my day-to-day driving is in EV mode.
Those stories right there are why PHEVs are still great. For many people, they have enough range for day-to-day driving. Then, when it’s time to put some serious miles down, you aren’t married to charging stations down your path. That’s a win in my book! It’s for this reason one of the cars I want to own someday is a first-generation Chevy Volt.
Since we’ve been a couple of days behind, I’ll nominate one more COTD. A comment thread in this morning’s TVR Cold Start had me giggling. From Man With A Reliable Jeep:
TVR deftly straddles that ambiguous line between “garage-built kit car” and “legitimate auto manufacturer.”
This sparked a thread with Captain Muppet delivering an equally hilarious reply:
As an engineer who has worked for some British OEMs I totally agree.
“Are we really doing it like this?”
“But this isn’t how Honda or BMW or Toyota would do it”
“If these parts were good enough for the 1971 Morris Marina they’ll be good enough for us!”
Fantastic. Have a great evening, everyone!