Before we get started on the 2012 Toyota Prius V verdict, which is a little on the slow side, we need to inform you that there is no third row. We had assumed that it would have 7 seats like the Alpha prototype in Japan, but there are only five. There is a good reason for this, as it would have took a lot of work to move the battery cells around, something that Toyota did not want to get in to.
Inside Line has had a bit of time with the new Prius V and the test drive threw up a few surprises. The main one was its performance, as it still comes with the same engine as the standard Prius. This does seem strange, as it now has to move an extra 230 pounds around. The result is an expected 10.4 seconds. For those who think that they might be able to squeeze a little more, Inside Line says that it will not happen.
Toyota’s aim with the Prius V, which is to have iPhone and Android integration is to persuade drivers to ditch their crossover SUVs in favor of this slightly larger hybrid vehicle. Now this could very well happen, but we believe that the Japanese automaker should have increased power output to more than the standard version.
The new larger Prius will get you to where you need to go, just as long as you do not have a deadline to meet. Now we are not trying to say that we should all drive fast, but the 2012 Prius V is just plain slow when it comes to even making a simple overtaking maneuver, as you need to plan it well ahead. The new hybrid is estimated to achieve 44mpg in the city, 40mpg on the highway and 42mpg combined. Expect it to go on sale in October 2011.