2011 Toyota Prius vs. Its Competition

2011 Toyota Prius
Bengt Halvorson Bengt Halvorson Deputy Editor

Take one look at the Honda Insight and you'll see why it's perhaps the top rival to the 2011 Toyota Prius; it has nearly the same, swept-back aero-body roofline; however the Insight has Honda's IMA mild-hybrid system and disappointing mileage compared to the Prius.

The Prius is roomier than the Insight as well.

More noteworthy is the Fusion Hybrid, a roomy mid-size sedan that gets 41 mpg in city driving, with a very smooth hybrid system and a better ride-and-handling balance than the Prius.

Left-brain thinkers will opt for the VW Jetta TDI diesel, which costs more than gas-engined Jettas but delivers fuel economy in the 40-mpg range and a reputation for durability—as well as great handling and a suave interior.

Two other rival models are technically from the same automaker as the Prius, though they probably wouldn't like you to think about it that way: The HS 250h is a small luxury sedan based on the new Prius but incorporating a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and a variation of the Prius' hybrid system.

Overall, the HS feels somewhat cramped inside and isn't much more responsive than the Prius, while getting lower mileage.

The new Lexus CT 200h hatchback is a better choice for most who want a sportier, more distinctive hybrid; it has a roomy interior as well as improved handling and plenty of nice details.

2011 Toyota Prius2011 Toyota Prius
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2011 Ford Fusion Hybrid2011 Ford Fusion Hybrid
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2011 Honda Insight 5dr CVT EX Angular Front Exterior View2011 Honda Insight
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2011 Lexus HS 250h 4-door Sedan Angular Front Exterior View2011 Lexus HS 250h
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2011 Lexus CT 200h2011 Lexus CT 200h
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2011 Volkswagen Jetta2011 Volkswagen Jetta Sedan
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Quick Specs
51 mpg city! The 2011 Toyota Prius remains the highest-mileage hybrid on the market, but that doesn't get in the way of practicality or comfort.
The 2011 Honda Insight lives in the shadow of the iconic Toyota Prius, but it's more enjoyable to drive.
The 2011 Lexus HS 250h pairs nifty technology features with high mileage ratings, though it fails to provide impressive comfort or an engaging driving experience.
The 2011 Lexus CT 200h is an iconic, stylish, and actually quite fun-to-drive car, with Lexus levels of refinement;, and it's a strong value—both as a way of entering the Lexus brand and as an exciting new green icon.
The 2011 Volkswagen Jetta steps back in tech time and lowers its German street cred—but still delivers a better driving feel and more back-seat room than many other compact sedans.
MSRP From     
Gas Mileage     
51 MPG City / 48 MPG Hwy40 MPG City / 43 MPG Hwy35 MPG City / 34 MPG Hwy43 MPG City / 40 MPG Hwy23 MPG City / 42 MPG Hwy
Gas/Electric I4N/AGas/Electric I4Gas/Electric I4Gas/Electric I4Gas I4
EPA Class     
Style Name     
5-Door HB I (GS)N/A5-Door CVT PZEV4-Door Sedan HybridFWD 4-Door Hybrid4-Door Manual
Front Wheel DriveN/AFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity     
Passenger Doors     
Body Style     
5 Door LiftbackN/A5 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan4 Door Hatchback4 Door Sedan
CVTN/AContinuously variable ratioECVTContinuously Variable RatioManual
Detailed Spec Comparison
 2011 Toyota Prius vs. 2011 Ford Fusion Hybrid2011 Toyota Prius vs. 2011 Honda Insight2011 Toyota Prius vs. 2011 Lexus HS 250h2011 Toyota Prius vs. 2011 Lexus CT 200h2011 Toyota Prius vs. 2011 Volkswagen Jetta Sedan