Thursday, April 28, 2016

Racing (Look) Prius

Well, not so much a racing Prius as there are no mechanical mods to the power train. It's still the same 4G Prius underneath but you can look like a race car...soon.

Photos from Wald International.

I Got Nuthin'

Honestly, sometimes these art projects excite and intrigue and other times I'm left with the feeling that, "well, we had this budget and if we didn't spend it we lose it next year so..."

I'm sure there are as many different viewpoints as there are viewers.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

I Click So You Don't Have To

There are tons of these sites out there. With one or two sentences seemingly strung together by a bot or a five year old and one headline with enough keywords to choke most Google algorithms, well, you get the idea.

And yes, the only reason I clicked was to see what could inspire a headline so insipid as this.

And no, no link. Because.

New Prius Gets Strong Safety Rating In Europe

The new fourth generation Prius scored a five star safety rating by the EU agency in charge of testing vehicles, the NCAP, despite additional criteria added this year.
...the Prius’ standard-fit safety equipment ensured that it achieved an impressive 85% score for safety assistance, which supplemented an impressive 92% score for adult occupant protection.
Source here.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

A Totally Different Kind of Prius Caravan

Who knew?
With a maximum towing capacity of 725 kg (1,598 lbs), the new-gen Prius has been engineered to tow a trailer or light caravan, for the first time in its 19-year history.

Its new ability has been made possible thanks to heat management measures introduced in its main electric motor-generator and differential. This, Toyota hopes, will endear the popular hybrid with its extended practicality to appeal to a wider range of customers. 

Those interested in the new Prius' towing capability will be able to equip the car with towing hitches and wiring systems from the automaker's official range of accessories, which are said to be "simple and easy to operate, with clear red and green indicators to show when a secure connection has been made". Most of the hardware is concealed behind the lower lip of the rear bumper and when the towing arm is not needed, it can be unclipped and stored in a special bag, in the boot. 

Toyota's announcement on the hybrid's towing ability comes right after Euro NCAP and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) have proved its safety, awarding it with 5 stars and Top Safety Pick Plus ratings, respectively. In the US, customers can buy the 2016 Prius from $24,200, while in the United Kingdom, it starts from £23,295 ($33,400). 
Obviously this was written for the UK market. I'm looking into this to see if it also applies here.

So I asked Toyota USA about this and this was there response...
"There is no Prius-specific Genuine Toyota Accessories towing hitch and/or wiring system available to US market consumers. As to whether or not this optional towing setup is UK- or EU-only, we cannot comment, nor can we comment on the Prius’ European specifications or capabilities."
We thank Toyota to taking the time to respond to our inquiry.

Prius Parade Sets New Guinness World Record

Confession: I've never liked world records.

Confession: I'm a jerk.

Confession: That first confession is a lie. When I was a kid, I had a Guinness book and thought it was awesome. I was eleven.

Last week, April 23rd to be specific, there was a gathering of Prius owners in Northern California (Alameda). During the day of fun they put together an attempt to set a new record for the largest number of Priuses or hybrids, or something, ever. What is impressive is that they managed to get 332 Prius owners to drive in this parade and they did indeed set a new, official, record. Congratulations to them and to organizers of the event. More Prius owners getting together is always a good thing.

Pictures from the Prius Chat facebook page. Do visit Prius Chat, it's the best online resource for Prius information anywhere.

It's All Fun And Games Until...

It actually happens...
A kidnapping suspect who fled a traffic stop in North Richmond led authorities on a pursuit that ended with his arrest in Albany on Saturday, according to the Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff. 
The incident unfolded at 2:30 p.m., when sheriffs deputies attempted to pull over a Prius committing a vehicle code violation. The Prius fled, but deputies managed to determine the car’s owner had an arrest warrant for kidnapping, evasion, false imprisonment and domestic violence. 
Also, a female passenger in his Prius at the time of the pursuit “appeared distressed and frantically waved her arms out of the window,” deputies said.
The pursuit, during which the suspect struck other vehicles and reportedly attempted carjackings as a law enforcement helicopter assisted in the chase, terminated on San Pablo Avenue in Albany, where the driver fled on foot and was apprehended by a Richmond Police K-9 unit.
Deputies determined that the female passenger was in fact the victim of a kidnapping.
The suspect’s identification was withheld pending further investigation. 
Anyone with any information on this case is asked to contact the Office of the Sheriff at (925) 313-2600.