2012 Toyota Prius V station wagon, Half Moon Bay, CA, May 2011
Even as the auto industry sputters, Toyota's family of Prius hybrids is under rapid expansion. For 2012, the Toyota Prius is joined by the new, larger 2012 Toyota Prius V wagon, as well as a new limited-availability Prius Plug-In Hybrid. Both of those will be reaching dealerships in Octover; then there's an all-new Prius C compact model on the way, next year.
Toyota has just priced both of these 2012 models—and both of the Prius Plug-In variants will, by the way, be eligible for a $2,500 federal tax credit.
Including the $760 destination fee, the base 2012 Prius V Two costs $27,160, while the mid-range Prius V Three is $27,925 and the top-of-the-line Prius V Five costs $30,750. The Prius Plug-In, on the other hand, will cost $32,760 for the base model or $40,285 in loaded Advanced form.
With a profile that's somewhere between station wagon and minivan—but a low ride height like a car—the Prius V doesn't make any attempt to be in style with crossovers—though it does have up to 80 percent more cargo space than other small SUVs, according to Toyota. With the high roof, more rear legroom, and fold-flat rear seatbacks plus rear seats that slide fore and aft, the Prius V promises a lot more versatility, as well as much more backseat space.
The powertrain is mostly the same as that of the standard Toyota Prius, however the Prius V weighs about 300 pounds more; that, combined with its less aerodynamic shape amount to somewhat lower—but still very impressive, next to other family wagons—EPA gas mileage ratings of 44 mpg city, 40 highway.
The entry-level Prius V Two even includes Bluetooth, a USB port, Smart Key entry, and a Display Audio system with rearview camera. A navigation system, Entune, expanded steering-wheel audio controls, and HD Radio with iTunes tagging get added to the Prius V Four, while the Five includes a six-way adjustable driver's seat with adjustable lumbar support; a four-way adjustable front passenger seat, both of them heated and trimmed in SofTex fabric (lighter than leather); LED headlamps; and integrated fog lamps.