2017 Toyota Prius Prime Earns Its Stripes Yet Again

Discussion in 'In the News' started by xcel, Aug 10, 2017.

  1. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    [​IMG] In a German Five PHEV vehicle shootout, the Prime ends up on top by a significant margin.

    Wayne Gerdes – CleanMPG – Aug. 7, 2017

    2017 Toyota Prius Prime PHEV-25 – Retails for $28,219 incl. mats and $895 D&H charge. Toyota rebates of up to $3,125, Federal Tax Credit of up to $4,500 if you qualify, and both state and local incentives of $1,500 in CA and MA + others and even HOV Lane Access in some states as a single occupant.


    Owners receive a PHEV with 25-miles of all-electric range and an incredible 55/53 mpg city/highway rating as a std. long range hybrid.

    The 2017 Toyota Prius PHEV was the top scorer in a recent German ADAC EcoTest comparison. Of the five vehicles tested including the Toyota Prius Prime, Kia Optima PHEV, BMW 225xe, VW Passat GTE, and Volvo XC90 T8, the Prime was the one and only vehicle efficient enough to earn five stars.
    The 4th gen hybrid platform with its 68 kW electric motors combined and 1.8L Atkinsonized I4 bring emissions to an extraordinarily low level. The results of the sites testing were 47 points out of 50 for SMOG forming emissions and the 50 out of 50 for the low GHG emissions or CO2.

    The Prius HEV and PHEV Models already undercut Germany’s 2021 CO2 targets of 95 g/km today.

    Five current models tested -Comparison of plug-in hybrids in the new EcoTest

    The first step towards electrified mobility is the hybrid car providing a significant reduction in fuel consumption. The next step is the PHEV, which can be purely electric over an intermediate range with a larger battery and more powerful electric motor(s).

    Ranges of 15 to 30 miles and maximum speeds of up to 75 mph are not uncommon within the PHEV universe. And unlike a BEV, the driver has no inkling of range anxiety. Once the battery energy is consumed, you continue on the gas engine as a very efficient hybrid.

    The supply of PHEVs across Europe is growing with most manufacturers offering at least one vehicle within their lineup. Demand is also rising much faster than for BEVs. For PHEVs in Germany, there is an e-car of 3,000 Euros ($3,500 USD).

    In the following test, ADAC tested five PHEVs as mentioned above. The BMW 225xe iPerformance, the KIA Opti-ma GDI PHEV, the Toyota Prius Prime, the Volvo XC90 T8 TwinPower and the VW Passat Variant GTE. Overall, the tests leave only one vehicle standing. That being the Toyota Prius.

    ADAC PHEV Competitive Comparison Conclusions

    The EcoTest models leave a mixed picture. Cutting to the chase, the Toyota Prius Prime is by far the most fuel-efficient, both in terms of electric power and fuel consumption. Although it has the lowest power with 122 hp, its outstanding low pollutant emissions is considerably better than the competitors.

    The VW Passat Variant GTE, which achieves an average result for the pollutants as well as for CO2 emissions, performed well. Third place is the KIA Optima PHEV. It is as economical as the Passat on the road, but has a higher pollutant emission. Like the VW, the Kia’s CO and particulate emissions are a problem which arise when the internal combustion engine is started cold.

    On the bottom is the BMW 225xe and the Volvo XC90. Both the current and fuel consumption values are far too high. The Volvo’s results are understandable given its 2.3-ton mass. Oddly, the BMWs consumption figures are surprisingly high. Like the VW and Kia, the CO and particulate emissions are a problem when the internal combustion engine is cold…

    Do the ADAC results sound familiar to what we have seen here in North America? I would have to say yes they do.
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  2. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member

    Interesting article. They mention a VW Golf 1.5 TSI emits 159 g/km and therefore only the Prius Prime in hybrid mode has significantly lower emissions (Kia looks good too though given its size).

    They mention about 32 miles range with Prius Prime which is bit higher certainly than the US EPA (and matches almost for once ECE). But their combined mpg was only 56 mpg. Probably their 'Autobahn' speed is bit higher.

    I do wonder why they show emissions for the 'Elektro' test cycle. They do mention in cold temperatures the ICE runs. But that could be bit misleading:

    Last edited: Aug 10, 2017
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  3. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Luke:

    I was reading the pages translated and you know what a mess that can be. They were using a "Well to Wheels" calculations on the kWh consumed for all-electric emissions.

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  4. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member

    I actually can read German but couldn't find a lot of explanation directly about that table (e.g. test speeds/range). But I noticed it says that the ICE does kick in at higher speeds and acceleration. Also in cold temperatures. So that probably explains emissions in 'Elektro' EV mode.

    It also mentions: if you charge battery at very low temperature, then the system can keep the battery temperature at a sufficient temperature and you can start driving in EV mode right away. Not sure what they mean. I wasn't aware that temperature during charging matters for cold start.
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  5. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member

    Looking at that last section indeed they mention well-to-wheel. But I don't believe it refers to that table or their test results. They basically say that the quoted CO2 by carmakers are misleading since it doesn't include any emissions in EV mode. And if you compare the combined real emissions with the advertised values then it's 1.5-2.5x higher. But we're talking here surely about ECE which we know are way off.
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  6. BillLin

    BillLin MASS: 2018 Bolt EV and 2017 Prime

    Could this be saying that charging generates some heat and warms the battery a bit, which would be perfect for unplugging and immediately driving away? I think it is good practice, anyway, to have the charging ready "just in time" for departure. This is especially true in hot weather.
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  7. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member

    Possibly. From my experience it's typically the opposite with PHEV's. Sonata starts the engine when turning on the heater (Accord didn't). But haven't seen ICE needed for high temperatures even with A/C running.

    Reading again I see they said rather outside temp and not necessarily charging temp:

    "If the plug-in is charged at very low outside temperatures, then the electronics can keep the batteries at sufficient temperature, in which case you can drive in EV mode right away. If no charge was possible prior, then the ICE will be activated at cold start."

    Pretty confusing what they are trying to tell. Since in 2nd sentence obviously if you didn't change it would be in hybrid mode. And they don't mention anymore temperature. I'm not familiar with Prius Prime but maybe there is some unique behavior when ICE is used in EV mode.
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  8. BillLin

    BillLin MASS: 2018 Bolt EV and 2017 Prime

    Oops, sorry. I now recall the Prime has a battery heater and cooler.

    This is for really low temperatures where the battery would not likely function well. I'm not able to find that specific threshold right now...
    xcel likes this.
  9. Trollbait

    Trollbait Well-Known Member

    Aside from some speciality chemistries, permanent damage will occur in a Li-ion if charged at normal rates with the electrolyte at or below water freezing temperatures. You have to charge at really slow rates until the battery heats up, or heat the battery before hand.
    BillLin and RedylC94 like this.

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