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3/4 Front Glamour 2013 Toyota Prius c

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Expert's Rating

4.5Excellent

MPG 53 City / 46 Highway
Pros
  • Exceptional fuel economy
  • Sporty feel
  • Priced for entry-level buyers
Cons
  • Sluggish acceleration
  • Noisy cabin at highway speeds
  • Lower-quality interior materials
, Automotive Editor -
Lethargic acceleration and cheap interior materials won't impress Prius c shoppers?but a starting price under $20,000 and 53 mpg on the highway will.

Introduction

As the nation's best-selling hybrid—and California's best-selling passenger car—the Prius continues to impress buyers with its blend of economy and eco-friendliness. These traits were only enhanced in 2012, when Toyota expanded the model lineup to include a smaller variant dubbed the Prius c.

Heading into 2013, the Prius c shuffles some higher-end features into lower-level trim levels, but remains largely unchanged. Speaking of trim levels, the Prius c has four of them: One, Two, Three and Four. They all feature the same 1.5-liter engine that works with an electric motor to deliver a meager 99 horsepower.

So equipped, the Prius c crawls to 60 mph in a snail-like 11.3 seconds. But the trade-off for tepid acceleration is splendid fuel economy: 53 mpg city and 46 mpg highway.

The Prius c appeals to younger buyers with a nearly vertical hatch that gives it the look of a "hot" hatchback. Even better, a Prius c One still costs less than $20,000, even with additional standard features. It's one of the lowest-priced cars to get well in excess of 40 mpg in the city and on the highway.

This low price comes at a cost, though. The subcompact’s cabin—a sea of multicolored plastics—has a downmarket feel, and gets noisy at highway speeds.

Which Style To Buy?

2013 Toyota Prius c
Starting price
$11,487

2013 Toyota Prius c One

Recommended for: Buyers who want an inexpensive city runabout.

The One is the base level for the 2013 Prius c and comes standard with: projector halogen headlights; power side-view mirrors with turn-signal indicators; 15-inch steel wheels with hubcaps; intermittent wipers; a rear spoiler; automatic climate control; a four-speaker AM/FM/CD/MP3 audio system with an auxiliary input, USB port and Bluetooth connectivity; a 3.5-inch TFT multi-information display; cloth seating with four-way manual adjustments; a tilt steering wheel with audio, cruise and audio controls; digital gauges; power windows and door locks with keyless entry; 12-volt power outlet; nine airbags; and daytime running lights.

2013 Toyota Prius c
Starting price
$11,487

2013 Toyota Prius c Two

Recommended for: Buyers who want exceptional city mpg in the $20,000 price range.

The Two includes the One’s basic equipment and adds in some premium features: projector headlights; power side-view mirrors with turn-signal indicators; variable intermittent windshield wipers; 15-inch steel wheels with hubcaps; a six-speaker AM/FM/CD/MP3 audio system with an auxiliary audio jack, USB port and Bluetooth connectivity; cloth-trimmed seats with a six-way manual-adjusting driver’s seat and a four-way passenger seat; a 3.5-inch TFT multi-information display; a 60/40 folding rear seat; cruise control; a center console with armrest and a storage compartment; a tonneau cover for the cargo area; a cargo area light; and an engine immobilizer.

2013 Toyota Prius c
Starting price
$11,487

2013 Toyota Prius c Three

Recommended for: Buyers who want a compact hybrid with upscale standard and optional equipment.

The Prius c Three carries all of the Two’s standard features and adds in more premium features, like: color-keyed door handles with one-touch locking and unlocking; a optional moonroof and 15-inch alloy wheels; a Display Audio system with six speakers, a 6.1-inch touchscreen, Entune, AM/FM/CD/MP3/SiriusXM/HD Radio capabilities, Bluetooth connectivity and an auxiliary port; a Touch Tracer Display; voice-command controls; and Toyota’s Smart Key System with remote keyless entry and push-button starting.

2013 Toyota Prius c
Starting price
$11,487

2013 Toyota Prius c Four

Recommended for: Buyers who want the fully-loaded Prius c experience.

The Four takes the Prius c to a whole new level with a slew of premium features added to the Three’s base features. The Prius c Four adds in: integrated fog lights; heated and power side-view mirrors with turn-signal indicators; 15-inch, eight-spoke alloy wheels with V-rated tires; optional 16-inch alloy wheels; SofTex faux leather seating with heated front seats; and a SofTex-rimmed tilting and telescoping steering wheel with audio, climate, MID, Bluetooth and voice-command controls.

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Used Toyota Prius c in 07095

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