Posted on November 2nd, 2012 No comments
Consumer Reports posted a nice article on what to look for to avoid buying a flood damaged vehicle.
Some good basic tips in there and something to keep in mind when considering that “almost new steal” at a local dealer lot.
Posted on February 10th, 2012 No comments
Posted on November 28th, 2011 No comments
Here’s a commercial for Japan’s Prius Alpha. The Alpa is the “v” in the US. It’s the wagonized version of the Prius we all know and love.
And speaking of love, I love this spot.
Posted on November 15th, 2011 No comments
Thanks to Prius Chat for the video…
Posted on May 23rd, 2011 No comments
You want to know about the first and newest member of the Prius family? Of course you do. I got to drive the v and spent some serious time taking it apart and learning about it. What I saw is at the page below.
Posted on April 6th, 2011 No comments
Martyn Williams of IDG News posted…
Microsoft and Toyota Motor will announce a collaboration between the two companies later Wednesday, they said.
Details of the tie-up between the world’s biggest software maker and world’s biggest auto maker will be disclosed in a video conference by Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft, and Akio Toyoda, president of Toyota Motor, at 1 p.m. PDT (8 p.m. GMT).
So what will happen to Entune? Details as this develops.
Posted on January 10th, 2011 No comments
So, the live event is over. The streaming walk-through is done. What do we know? And, almost always importantly, what do not know yet?
Prius V, what we know:
-Set for delivery in “late summer”
-42 city, 38 hwy, combined 40MPG
-30 cubic feet of storage space, more cargo space than the Escape
-Sliding second row of seats
-optional resin “moonroof” with electric covers but which doesn’t open to the outside
-Will “connect” to 95-98% of cell phones for calling
-new generation of Nav, most of which will still be disabled during driving
-No video in the vehicle, no second row video screens
-11.9 gallon gas tank
-0-60 in 11.5 seconds
-The same 1.8 liter engine in the current Prius
-New reheating system to increase efficiency
-Backup cameras are now standard
-Pitch and bounce control for a smoother ride
-NihM batteries. same as current Prius
-300 lbs. heavier than Prius
-Designed to carry more cargo/passenger weight than Prius
Full specs here via Prius Chat
Prius V, what we do not know:
-What it’s like to actually drive it
-Upper end options details, such as what size is the larger screen
Mostly nothing we didn’t already know.
Prius C, What they said:
-Smaller Prius, four doors and hatch, looks very “Sciony”
-”Hybrid hybrid MPG that isn’t a plugin”
-Nothing about pricing
-Set for delivery in “the first of half 2012″
What do you think?
Posted on January 10th, 2011 No comments
Via Prius Chat comes this shot from AutoBlog of the new Prius family. Hmmm, Prius V, Prius plug-in, Prius and the rumored Prius C.
Want to the reveal LIVE? Just click here. Danny Cooper, Linda Weidemann and I will be doing commentary.
Posted on December 28th, 2010 No comments
I just finished an almost 2,000 mile trip in my Prius. I have to say, it forced to re-look at a lot of things about the vehicle both good and bad. I’m working on a video that may better illustrate what I mean but here are some highlights.
-The real core truth about Prius is simple, it works, all the time, under any condition and it delivers. This is the basic stock Prius offers and which Toyota trades in on the Prius brand name. You don’t have to have to a lot of disclaimers and exclusions, it just does what it does better than any other hybrid on the market right now.
-Three adults, two dogs and the every other cubic square inch of my car stuffed with luggage and xmas presents. Almost 2,000 miles with high winds, rain and in some places snow and freezing temperatures. The vehicle remains comfortable and still delivers 44.9 MPG with utterly no effort whatsoever. In fact, let me add in that I probably averaged 70 MPH on the freeway in horrible driving conditions with three different drivers, two of whom can’t even spell “hypermiler.”
-Plasmacluster doesn’t get half the favorable pub it deserves.
-Whoever put the accessory plug and power outlet in the console should be beaten with a stick.
-I love my sunroof. Yes. Even in the winter.
-The downside to the aerodynamic shape of Prius? You have to handwash the thing if you expect the back end to be clean.
-A lot of people still think you have to plug-in a Prius or that it can’t go over 70 MPH. A lot of people.
-The regional popularity (or un-popularity) of Prius is amazing. Contrast the difference in visibility of the vehicle in different parts of the country is just striking.
-I can’t shake the feeling that, deep down, some of the manufacturing differences between the second and third generation Priuses leave the third generation feeling less solid, less tight, more plasticky. It’s small things but overall they add up to a feeling I have to acknowledge.
-Why is the front passenger seat so much less comfortable than the driver seat? It shouldn’t be.
-Cupholders. Please. No, really. Please.
-A light in the upper glovebox would be nice.
-My window washer tank needs to be replaced, again. Tedious and annoying. And frankly, potentially hazardous when driving 1,000 miles home in the winter.
-A rear view camera that could be activated while driving would help, a bit, make up for Prius’s still mostly mediocre rear view issues. The camera is there, just give me a button.
-There is no reason or excuse for the seat heater button to be placed in a position that requires me to fold in half, while driving, to turn it on.
-Did I mention how much I despise the location of the audio accessory plug? Oh boy.
-And where’s my USB connectivity for my MP3 player? Seriously. It’s 2010, almost 2011. In excusable in a car such as Prius.
-And stuff the lawyers in a sack and tell them that customers come back and buy vehicles from your company based on usability. Stop playing around with not allowing me to change things on the MFD while the vehicle is moving. I have an adult passenger in the front passenger seat, it’s stupid to not allow them to make adjustments. Oh, and if you think it’s convenient to pull over on I-95 to do that, you’re effing nuts. This kind of stuff drives owners crazy and makes your vehicles less appealing which translates to less sales which means less money for Toyota Legal to protect.
-PWR mode rocks.
Posted on December 8th, 2010 No comments
Toyota has been very sly with their rollout of the next member/s of the Prius family. The first phase was a puzzle of images of the dash of the vehicle distributed through a group of sites. For the next phase they’re doing (sort of) the same thing, with different sites. Here is one piece of the puzzle which, when complete, should be an image of some part of the new Prius (Prius V?).
Posted on November 18th, 2010 No comments
Powered by Tesla. Not a bad tagline. Not bad at all.
Posted on November 15th, 2010 No comments
Good news, courtesy of Toyota’s Prius Team, here is the first official shot from the inside of the upcoming Prius V…
The bad news, front and center is the object of Toyota’s press release today, some new little bit of evil called, “iheartradio”.
Now, why would I hate something called, “iheartradio”? How about this tidbit from the PR release linked above:
Toyota Motor Sales (TMS) U.S.A., Inc. today announced that it will be working with Clear Channel Radio’s iheartradio, incorporating more than 750 of America’s favorite radio stations and other exclusive content into select Toyota vehicles beginning in 2011. This is the first partnership Toyota is announcing for mobile application integration. More details will be released at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in January 2011.
Aside from what has to be one of the most brain dead stupid names I’ve ever had the bad luck not to avoid, it’s from Clear Channel, one of the most vicious media consolidators in the history of this country. Clear Channel has done more to kill and eliminate local radio (and damage music in general) than anyone in my lifetime. Clear Channel has taken over hundreds (well over 1,000) stations and linked and syndicated them removing local control and programming in favor ot network broadcasts and automated, computerized formats. Aside from that, and homogenizing musical playlists, buying up venues and promoters to further consolidate their hold over performance as well as radio, Clear Channel’s only accomplished more quickly what was probably an eventuality, making terrestrial commercial radio, more or less, irrelevant.
So that’s why I’m not all that happy to see Toyota fluff up the covers and invite Clear Channel to now orchestrate what I can listen to in my Toyota.
Oh yeah, thank Beelzebub I can now listen to Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Dr. Laura, Glenn Beck and Ryan Seacrest with just one touch courtesy of iheartradio and Toyota. Yeah, that’s the kind of programming I want to have permanently installed in my vehicle. And yes, that’s right from the press release.
I don’t know all the details of how iheartradio will be implemented in the 2011 Toyotas but I can tell you that this is the kind of move that will have me considering something other than a Toyota for my next vehicle. Like all of us, all the serious time I spend with my Toyota product is inside it and for me, what I can listen to is important, very important. Rather than offer me more freedom to plug in my own content or partner with content distributors such as Pandora who let me “program” my own radio stations, Toyota has brought into the privacy of my (potential future) car the one company I would go a long way to avoid in public and I would never interact in my personal sphere.
It is possible that there is some detail/s in the implementation of iheartradio that might soften that view. I tend to doubt it because, frankly, I can’t really imagine wanting my car buying dollars to go towards furthering a partnership between Toyota and Clear Channel. I hate to say it but there it is anyway.
I think, in a bigger sense, this is very ominous. If this the direction Toyota is going, limiting what I can do inside of their products and forcing me to subsidize, through the purchase of my automobile, a company that I feel very negatively about, then I think that’s a loss for me but what’s more, a loss for all of us. I would much prefer, as I mentioned above, to see Toyota moving in the direction of allowing Toyota owners to create their own entertainment space inside the car. I don’t need to provide a company such as Clear Channel another chance to make me the captive listener I was before these other options existed. Toyota is still behind other companies when it comes to integration of devices like MP3 players and smart phones. And now, they’ve partnered with a company whose single mission has been controlling, tightly controlling what I can listen to. And it’s built into my car? I said “ominous” above because I think it is. I don’t think it’s hyperbole. For so many reasons this is exactly the wrong direction for Toyota and it saddens me to see this happening.
That’s just my personal opinion and YMMV.