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2013 Toyota Prius v Five

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Cheryl AutoZoneby Cheryl Eldridge

The Toyota Prius v  Five is without a doubt  a family-oriented car. Toyota introduces space savviness, family friendliness, and unbelievable fuel economy with it’s new Prius v Five.
My one-week test drive with barcelona red metallic exterior and  dark green interior Prius V was great. For $37,411 the Hybrid delivered 44mpg in the city and 40 mpg on the highway, which left me without having to make my normal a gas stop. It’s true!
With the 2013 Toyota Prius V, Toyota proves that it’s got the business of catering to family-oriented car shoppers down to a science.
The Prius hybrid hatchback has been a huge hit for Toyota on the strength of its outstanding utility and exceptional fuel efficiency. The 2013 Toyota Prius V is built using the same basic formula as its omnipresent sibling, with the addition of greater passenger and cargo capacity.
With the Prius V, what you get is essentially a stretched, wider Prius. The V is an inch wider, 6 inches longer and 3 inches taller than the hatchback, with 60 percent more cargo capacity; peek behind the rear seats and you’ll find 34 cubic feet available for your cargo. The cabin is designed to handle most daily tasks. The rear seats slide, recline and fold down, for instance, and you can even squeeze in unusually long cargo thanks to its fold-flat front passenger seat.
Superb fuel economy is, of course, a central part of the Prius’ appeal, and the Prius V shares its powertrain with the hatchback: a 1.8-liter gas engine teamed with an electric motor and a nickel-metal hydride battery pack to generate a combined 134 horsepower. Though the V isn’t quite as frugal as its smaller sibling (EPA ratings are 44 mpg city/40 mpg highway and 42 mpg combined), its mileage is still high enough to make it a compelling pick relative to most choices in the compact wagon/crossover segment.
The 2013 Toyota Prius V is available in three trim levels: the Two, the Three and the Five.
Standard equipment on the base Two includes 16-inch alloy wheels, keyless ignition/entry, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, automatic climate control, cruise control, a height-adjustable driver seat, a fold-flat front passenger seat, a 60/40-split-folding rear seat that slides and reclines, and a six-speaker sound system with a CD player, an iPod/USB audio interface and Bluetooth connectivity/streaming audio.
The Three adds a navigation system with voice controls along with a rearview camera, satellite radio and HD radio. You also get Entune, Toyota’s multimedia interface with text-to-voice functionality and app integration. The Five adds 17-inch alloy wheels, foglights, automatic LED headlights, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, upgraded upholstery (Toyota’s new SofTex – an eco-friendly alternative to leather) and heated front seats.
An Advanced Technology package is offered with my tester, the Five, and includes a panoramic sunroof, adaptive cruise control, an automated parallel-parking system, an upgraded navigation system with a larger touchscreen, a premium eight-speaker sound system, a pre-collision safety system and Toyota’s Safety Connect system.
The 2013 Toyota Prius V is motivated by a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine teamed with a pair of electric motors that yields a combined total output of 134 hp and 153 pound-feet of torque. Power is sent through a specialized continuously variable transmission (CVT).
In track testing, the Prius V went from zero to 60 mph in 10.3 seconds.
On the safety side, every 2013 Toyota Prius V comes standard with antilock disc brakes, stability and traction control, front side airbags, side curtain airbags and a driver knee airbag. Optional equipment includes a pre-collision safety system and Toyota’s Safety Connect telematics system (which includes emergency assistance and a stolen-vehicle locator). In brake testing, the Prius V stopped from 60 mph in 129 feet, which is a bit longer than average.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the Prius V its highest possible rating of “Good” in the frontal-offset, side and roof strength tests.
User-friendliness is the prevailing theme within the Prius V’s cabin. Controls are large and clearly labeled, and the shift lever is placed within easy reach, high on the center stack near the steering wheel. As such, this wagon is a good match for drivers with arthritis or other mobility challenges. Sadly, taller drivers still have to contend with a steering wheel that’s placed too far away. There’s a telescoping column, but it doesn’t extend nearly far enough.
On the plus side, storage opportunities abound within the cabin. For example, there’s a huge two-tiered glovebox that swallows more than just an owner’s manual, and there’s a large center console bin along with an open nook beneath the center stack.
There’s no shortage of tech amenities either. Toyota’s Entune – which offers Bing search engine functionality, Pandora Internet radio, MovieTickets.com and real-time traffic, weather and fuel price information – is standard on Three and Five models. All Prius V models come with Bluetooth connectivity and music streaming.
A reclining backseat slides fore and aft, allowing you to choose between limolike legroom and expansive cargo capacity. Luggage capacity logs in at a very generous 34.3 cubic feet. Total cargo capacity is also excellent. With 67.3 cubic feet available with the rear seats down, the Prius V rivals most small crossover SUVs.
Shifting gears for the Prius V Five was  new. Toyota has a gear shift that’s blue where you can shift gears for drive, reverse and neutral; however, to place the vehicle in park, one must push the P button. That was new to me and I think that the engineers should be applauded on such a small, but great adjustment.
Until next week, drive safe, don’t text and drive and let’s put a stop to road rage.