NEW FOR 2014:

– Touring Package adds synthetic leather upholstery, power driver’s seat, and heated front seats.

Arguably Toyota’s most recognizable car, the Prius has reinvented green motoring for the masses. A wedge-shaped slice of the future, it offers owners low ownership costs and is reasonably practical, too. An unusual interior layout including a centre-mounted all-digital instrument display hasn’t dissuaded most buyers from embracing the Prius – and neither have its choppy ride nor its vague steering.

For 2014, there is only one change to note for the Prius – the Touring Package now receives a shot of luxury in the form of heated and power-adjustable front seats that are trimmed in supple SofTex synthetic leather.

The Prius uses a 1.8-litre four-cylinder engine, combined with the Hybrid Synergy Drive hybrid system and nickel metal hydride (NiMH) battery, and continuously variable transmission (CVT). This setup delivers 134 net horsepower. The Prius offers drivers four modes. In addition to Standard Mode, the Prius can also be programmed into EV-Drive Mode, allowing battery-only driving at low speeds for about 1.6 km in certain conditions; Power Mode, which increases throttle input sensitivity for a sportier feel; and Eco Mode, which helps the driver achieve better fuel economy.

The plug-in model uses the same gas engine but receives an upgraded lithium ion battery pack. It offers approximately 25 km of range, and can be charged from a household 110-volt outlet in as little as three hours.

It comes in a single trim line, with available option packages.

The Prius features include 15-inch alloy wheels, 6.1-inch display AM/FM/CD/MP3/WMA audio with six speakers, USB and auxiliary input, Bluetooth capability, backup camera, automatic climate control, cloth seats, six-way manually adjustable driver’s seat, 60/40 split/fold rear seat, power locks, power windows with auto-up/down, outside temp gauge, multi-information display with ECO drive monitor, tilt/telescopic steering with steering wheel mounted audio and climate controls, touch tracer display, carpet and all-season floor mats, tonneau cover, push button start, driver door handle touch lock/unlock, cruise control, overhead console box, map lights, cargo net, keyless entry, illuminated entry, power adjustable heated mirrors, body-colour door handles and mirrors, LED taillights, and vehicle proximity notification system.

Moonroof Upgrade Package adds navigation, satellite radio, integrated garage door opener, proximity function for locking and unlocking doors, and power moonroof with solar panels.

Touring Package adds (to Standard model) navigation, satellite radio, integrated garage door opener, 17-inch aluminum alloy wheels, power eight-way adjustable driver seat, heated front seats, synthetic leather upholstery, fog lights, LED headlights, headlight washers, auto-leveling headlight system, and proximity function for locking and unlocking doors.

Technology Package adds (to Standard model) 7.0-inch display audio system with navigation, eight-speaker JBL audio system, satellite radio, power eight-way power driver seat, pre-collision system, dynamic radar cruise control, heated front seats, synthetic leather upholstery, synthetic leather-wrapped steering wheel, integrated garage door opener, front passenger door handle touch lock/unlock, power moonroof with solar panels, and rear bumper protector.

The Prius Plug-in features the same equipment as the base Prius plus Plug-in specific wheels, tailgate garnish, and front valance, satellite radio, navigation, heated front seats, auto-dimming rear view mirror, proximity function for locking and unlocking doors, and a lithium ion battery pack.

An additional Technology Package adds 7.0-inch display audio system, eight-speaker JBL stereo, power eight-way adjustable driver seat, pre-collision system, dynamic radar cruise control, synthetic leather upholstery, LED headlights, headlight washers, auto-leveling headlight system, and fog lights.

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