The latest Prius news leaked by Toyota is interesting. The new Prius seems to have missed its 10% fuel economy improvement goal. The present model has a 50 MPG combined rating and Toyota’s news today is that the new car is expected to earn “only” a 52 MPG combined rating. Don’t be too disappointed if you were hoping for 55 MPG, especially if your commute is mostly city driving. Toyota is saying that its new Eco trim Prius will be rated at 56 combined when the EPA finalizes its review. Even more interesting, the new Prius Eco is expected to earn a 58 MPG city rating.
In most states where the Prius sells best a 58 MPG gasoline-powered car is going to rival or top the cost per mile for energy of EVs. Even in California’s over-priced gasoline market, where regular unleaded is averaging $2.80 this week, a 58 MPG Prius operating in the city will have a cost per mile of under five cents. In states where gasoline is now about $2.00 per gallon the Prius Eco’s cost per mile in the city is a shockingly low 3.4 cents per mile. Imagine traveling 1,000 miles per month without range anxiety for under $35.00.
We have not seen the CO2 production per mile figures yet for the Prius Eco, but we can guestimate that it will have a number near 160 grams per mile of CO2 production. This will make the Prius Eco one of the greenest vehicles one can operate in the city. It will be the greenest vehicle that one can drive from the city and travel 300+ miles in without stopping to refuel. Until the new Prius Plug-in arrives in mid-2016.