Tag Archive for 'Prius'

New York Times: How Long to Recoup Hybrid/SFE Trim Level Costs?

Many of you are have seen hybrid versions of cars, or even hybrid-specific models like the Toyota Prius, which combine electric motors with gas engines to get huge gains in fuel economy.  Now there’s a new player in the fuel economy wars: the SFE, or Super Fuel Economy.  It’s a Ford acronym, but I’ll be using it to describe any non-hybrid which uses aerodynamic modifications, special transmission or tires to eke out a few extra MPGs.  The New York Times even posted a comparison on their site, so continue reading for that and my thoughts on it.

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Toyota Announces Repair Bulletin for 2004-2007 Prius, over Cooling

The Toyota Prius has seen its fair share of ups and downs over the last year, seeing unintended acceleration and other recalls.  Now, Toyota has announced a Repair Campaign.  While not a safety recall, it’s still a fairly serious issue.  From the press release, it looks like some 378,000 Priuses in the US can develop an issue with the hybrid drive’s cooling system.  Click past the jump for more details and the press release.

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Uh-oh: Prius driver loses credibility

Last week, it was reported that Jim Sikes was driving his Toyota Prius when it suddenly accelerated and wouldn’t slow down through the use of its brakes.  A California Highway Patrol officer showed up and gave him instructions on how to get the car back under control.  Now, through some research and testing, many facets of his story are starting to unravel.

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CNN: Cops help Prius driver stop runaway (w/Video)

As part of one of Toyota’s recalls, the 2004-2009 Prius already has enough attention.  Adding to this is a video and report of a California man whose Prius took off on him – unintended acceleration and all.  The man’s car took after trying to pass a slower-moving vehicle, and a California Highway Patrol officer used his PA system to talk the driver and inform him how to stop the car.  Read on for more details and video.

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PedalGate Update: Recall on 2010 Prius / Lexus HS

We knew it was coming, and Toyota has announced another recall; this time for the brakes on the 2010 Toyota Prius.  In a slightly surprising turn of events, the automaker also included their 2010 Lexus HS250h hybrid, which is based off of the same design as the Prius, with Lexus appointments and refinement.  Toyota is recalling a total of 148,500 vehicles for problems with the dual braking systems mentioned in the previous article.  The problem occurs when the car’s computer needs to mix the traditional friction braking system with the regenerative braking system employed by most hybrids.  This transition period can leave drivers without proper braking power, even though Toyota says that the brakes will work and that drivers just need to apply more pressure to the brake pedal.

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Update: 2010 Prius DOES have braking issues

From the previous posts on this subject, it has become apparent that the 3rd generation Prius, starting with the 2010 model, has issues when braking.  It seems that on slippery or bumpy surfaces, a loss of braking can occur.  In a move that is no longer shocking for Toyota, it appears that they knew about the issue and didn’t tell anyone until it became news earlier this week.  Hiroyuki Yokoyama, Toyota’s manager of Quality Control, told the New York Times that they had fixed the issue and any 2010 model year Prius sold since late January has the fix built in.  No specific date was mentioned, but expect when a recall is announced.  While Toyota has yet to confirm a recall, I highly doubt they can let this one go without announcing another recall.

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