Is the 2017 Prius Prime the perfect long-distance green commuter car?
John Goreham's picture

2017 Toyota Prius Prime EV Proving Perfect Long-Distance Commuter Car

The all-new Toyota Prius Prime plug-in hybrid electric vehicle offers green commuters a no-sacrifice solution enabling longer commutes than most EVs can handle.

The 2017 Toyota Prius Prime plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) is proving to be a very popular green commuter car. In addition to outselling the Chevy Bolt and both Tesla models in the last two months, the Prius Prime has a shot at being the top-selling EV in America if it can just pull ahead of the popular Chevy Volt. This should be no surprise to Toyota Prius fans, who know that the Prius is the top-selling green car on the planet, now and since its introduction.

Our most recent evidence of the Prius Prime's success as a green commuter comes courtesy of Facebook Prius Owner's Club member Jesse. Jesse's own Prius just passed the quarter-million-mile marker. He enjoys talking up other Prius owners and spotted the vehicle above and its owner in Milford, Massachusetts at Waters Corporation. Waters is a life-sciences company that has been in business for a half-century in the Massachusetts area.
- Read About Jesse's Prius Here

Talking to the owner, Jesse learned that the car helps her with her 55-mile, interstate commute each day. She charges the Prius Prime up at home, and then plugs in again at work, making the most of the Prime's 25 miles of all-electric range. The Prime can recharge fully in under five hours on normal 110-volt power, or in about two hours on a level 2 charger. What struck us as important was that, aside from the more expensive Chevy Bolt, there are no affordable EVs that can handle this owner's commute. The distance is just too long. Even the Bolt offers less than half the total driving range of this Prius Prime.

With the Prius Prime's 133 MPGe fuel economy, it is one of the most efficient EVs on the planet. When the electric range has been fully utilized, it switches to a 54 MPG hybrid and can go a further 615 miles on its fuel. Were the charger for some reason unavailable, it wouldn't pose any problem at all for this long-distance green commuter.

Jesse learned from the owner of this Prius Prime that she and her husband have previously owned a 2003 Honda Civic Hybrid, as well as a 2009 and 2013 Toyota Prius.

Do you have a green car story to tell? Contact us or feel free to use the comments below.

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My 2011 Leaf gets 70 highway miles. How can this article say "there are no affordable EVs that can handle this owner's commute"? Is her 55-mile drive round-trip or total?
Excellent point Tim. Imagine yourself a mother who arrives at work after depleting 55 miles of 70 total in range. As you near work, the nurse from your kid's school calls... Or upon arriving, the single charging station is occupied/not working/plowed in etc. Just thinking out loud.
Your reply is a bit off-topic. I'm simply stating that the article says no affordable cars have that range. This is not correct, especially if her total round trip is 55 miles. (Again, the article is unclear.)
In what way is commuting 110 miles a day "green"? The Volt could handle this commute at least as well as the Prime, There is no point in saying that no affordable EV could handle that commute, since the Prime is not an EV. .
Well said. The Volt is another EV that could do this commute with no problems at all. You make a great point about choosing lifestyles that result in greener living. That said, the line of cars from New Hampshire that commute into and back out of the Boston Metro area each day is about 40 miles long and continuous for about 6 hours per day. Many are breadwinners from families that cannot move closer. This is a reality all over the country. Criticize those that do their best if you so choose. Your comment that PHEVs and EREVs are not EVs is out of synch with every electric vehicle advocacy group and EV publication. Cars that can travel on EV power alone and that can charge with a plug are EVs.
You just described my commute in Raleigh, NC, except several times a month I have to drive daughter in to school so that's 45 miles in making for a 70 mile day. I can't charge at work, but sometimes I can get 10-14 at the gym near work. I burn about 8 gallons every 1100 to 2200 miles. The Volt sacrificed some gas mileage for 7 sec. 0-60 and a bit more to be the lowest NOx gas motor sold in U.S. as of 2016. I hope the Prime and the Ionic are cleaner.